Dr. Edward Barksdale bio

Dr. Edward Barksdale

Chief Division of Pediatric Surgery & Surgeon-in-Chief, UH Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital
Professor, Case Western Reserve School of Medicine

Edward M. Barksdale, Jr. MD HMS ‘84 is the Robert J. Izant, Jr. MD Professor and Surgeon-in-Chief at Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital/University Hospitals and Case Western Reserve School of Medicine (CWRUSOM). An All-American Athlete and honors graduate of Yale University (1980), Dr. Barksdale received his medical degree from Harvard University (1984). He completed a residency in General Surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston (1991) and fellowship training in Pediatric Surgery at Children’s Hospital Medical Center in Cincinnati (1994).

He began his academic surgical career at the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh (1994-2007) and was recruited to Rainbow/UH to be the Division Chief of Pediatric Surgery in 2007. Dr. Barksdale has been widely recognized and awarded by local and national colleagues and communities for his service to his various missions. He has served numerous invited visiting professorships, received several major medical school awards and gained national recognition for his accomplishments as a medical/surgical educator. He was recently inducted into the prestigious American College of Surgeons Academy of Master Surgeon Educators (2022).

He is a frequent lecturer on his clinical areas of expertise in childhood cancer and chronic intestinal disease. In addition, he has delivered major keynote addresses at graduate and medical schools. A member of numerous national medical/surgical organizations, where he has also held leadership roles. Dr. Barksdale is the immediate Past-President the American Pediatric Surgery Association.

Dr. Barksdale currently works at the nexus of academia, clinical surgery, medical education, public health and social justice as a passionate advocate for child health and healthcare. He endeavors to invest his academic, clinical and service efforts to inspire individuals and transform communities at the precipice of hope. In Cleveland, he has been devoted to building programs to address access, health disparities, particularly in fragile populations of children. He is the Co-Founder of the Antifragility Initiative, a novel holistic, person-centered, pediatric violence intervention funded by the Victims of Crime Act (VOCA). He was recognized by former Mayor Frank Jackson and The City of Cleveland for his contributions to the community (2021). He currently advises the new Mayor of Cleveland, Justin Bibb and City Council on public health around gun violence. His endeavors help make Cleveland and America more safe vibrant and prosperous, especially for children and young people.

He is the proud husband of one and father of four adult children. His life and career have been profoundly guided by strong values he learned from family and community growing up in Lynchburg, Virginia during the dynamic 1960s.