Professor emeritus Rajam Ramamurthy elected president of retired faculty and staff association


Rajam Ramamurthy, MD, professor emeritus, department of pediatrics, division of neonatology, was recently elected as president of the Association of Retired Faculty and Associates (ARFA).

Rajam Ramamurthy, MD, professor emeritus, department of pediatrics, division of neonatology, was recently elected as president of the Association of Retired Faculty and Associates (ARFA). The association was founded in 1995 to provide retired UT Health San Antonio faculty and staff an opportunity to remain connected to the university and its programs through luncheons, campus events and an annual holiday party. Spouses of retirees are also welcome to join.

In addition to serving as a connection point for its members, ARFA supports a scholarship award to a deserving student from one of the university’s schools on a rotating basis each year. In 2023, a $2,000 scholarship was awarded to a School of Health Professions student.

“I am happy to say that in 2024, a student from the Joe R. and Teresa Lozano Long School of Medicine will be the recipient,” Ramamurthy said.

As the association’s 17th president, Ramamurthy succeeds ARFA President Rajia Tobia, former executive director of libraries at the university. She will serve a two-year term along with eight board members, including Tobia.

“Dr. Ramamurthy brings a wealth of experience to the ARFA presidency,” said Tobia. “She was the first woman to be elected as president of the Bexar County Medical Society, successfully leading this organization of physicians. She is passionate about keeping retirees involved with UT Health San Antonio.”

Ramamurthy began her career at the university in 1977 as an assistant professor and rose to the rank of full-time professor with tenure in the department of pediatrics, division of neonatology. During her time at the university, she received the outstanding faculty award from the class of 1983, the Presidential Teaching Award in 1991 and in 2013 and the UT Regents Outstanding Teaching Award.

Among her many accomplishments, she directed the Premature Infant Development (PREMIEre) Program created to ensure that infants at risk of developmental delays due to prematurity, catastrophic illness at birth or environmental factors are evaluated for growth, neurological and developmental abnormalities in an intense follow-up program with developmental testing, appropriate interventions and family education.

Ramamurthy also served as the chair of the board of trustees of the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin. Her pioneering work in India contributed to the development of neonatology as a specialty in India.

“She has been a lead organizer of the “Compassionistas,” an interprofessional group promoting the values of Compassionate San Antonio,” Tobia said. “The campus’s Compassion Path is one the projects that benefited from her enthusiastic support.”

The Compassion Path — a trail of 11 trees along the walking and jogging path in front of the Joe R. and Teresa Lozano Long Campus — is part of the Compassionate San Antonio Resolution, which affirmed San Antonio as an official Compassionate City.

During her presidential tenure with ARFA, Ramamurthy would like to focus on a “compassion agenda” that explores the transition from working at the university to retiring. While there are a variety of reasons for retiring, that transition typically entails a shift in perspective and Ramamurthy is interested in addressing that journey, perhaps with a group at the university that works with those contemplating retirement.

“I thought our [group] could be a good resource for that kind of conversation,” she said, adding that members from ARFA can share stories about their experiences after retirement. “You retire and then the world is different and that has to be addressed.”

Ramamurthy encouraged university faculty and staff who have worked for the university for at least five years and are contemplating or nearing retirement to join the association by completing an online membership form or contact Community Engagement and Special Projects Coordinator Cindi Adcock at

“We are a voice for a large number of people who have a lot of experience and a lot of knowledge,” she said.


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