Established in 2008 through commitments made by nearly 300 individuals, families, and organizations in honor of Dr. Nicholas J. Fortuin

NICHOLAS J. FORTUIN, MD, interned at Johns Hopkins Osler Medical Service in 1965, then entered fellowship training in cardiovascular medicine under Richard Ross, conducting research involving new concepts in the distribution of blood flow in heart muscle. He was drafted into the U.S. Pubic Health Service, assigned to the University of North Carolina School of Medicine to conduct research on the effects of air pollution on the heart. While there he employed the new technique of ultrasound to study heart function. In 1971 he returned to Hopkins, rising through the faculty ranks to professor of medicine in 1986. During his early faculty years he developed the first laboratory of echocardiography at Johns Hopkins, and promoted the use of this important technique in clinical cardiology.

Dr. Fortuin’s commitment to medical education at all levels was a strong feature of his professional life at Johns Hopkins. With colleagues Thomas Traill and Lowell Maughan, he organized and ran the annual "Topics in Cardiovascular Medicine" course for practitioners from outside the institution. He served as a member of the board of trustees of The Johns Hopkins Hospital for over 20 years, and also was a member of the Johns Hopkins Medicine Board. He was president of the School of Nursing Board for a two-year period. Dr. Fortuin passed away in 2010.


HUGH G. CALKINS, MD, the inaugural Nicholas J. Fortuin, M.D. Professor of Cardiology, is known throughout the world as one of the foremost authorities on catheter ablation, syncope, and ARVD, an inherited cause of sudden cardiac death. He is also founding director of the Johns Hopkins Arrhythmogenic Right Ventricular Dysplasia (ARVD) Program. He has played a pioneering role in the development of radiofrequency catheter ablation for treatment of cardiac arrhythmias, abnormalities in the heart’s rhythm that can cause palpitations, heart racing or sudden death. He is also credited with first recognizing the close link between neurally mediated syncope and post-syncopal fatigue.

Dr. Calkins received his cardiology fellowship training at Johns Hopkins. He is a professor in the Department of Medicine, where he serves as director of the Electrophysiology Service. Under his leadership, the Electrophysiology Service has become one of the premier research and clinical electrophysiology programs in the world. He has authored more than 50 book chapters and published more than 290 articles in leading publications. In 2013 he was named president of the Heart Rhythm Society.