William A. Pusey, MD

December 1, 1865 - August 29, 1940

William A. Pusey, MD was a charter member of the Chicago Dermatological Society, a past president of the American Dermatological Association (ADA) and a past president of the American Medical Association (AMA). He was chair of the department of Dermatology at the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Chicago which later became the University of Illinois College of Medicine. He was an expert in the study of syphilis and advocated for the use of radiation for the treatment of a variety of dermatologic conditions. In addition, he authored the first history of dermatology to be written in English.

He was born as the son of a physician and graduated from Vanderbilt in 1885 and New York University School of Medicine in 1888. He received additional training in the dermatology in Europe.

During his tenure as AMA president, he argued against the specialization of medicine and drew attention to the costs of obtaining a medical degree, which he felt kept poor rural students from attending medical school and contributed to the lack of physicians in less urban localities. He is one of the individuals who signed the first charter of the American Academy of Dermatology.