Ronald S. Wade


Since 1974, Ronn has served as the Director of the Maryland State Anatomy Board, Public Health Services, Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and Director of the Anatomical Services Division, University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland.  His personal and professional interests in advancing and promoting anatomical Science, medical education, clinical, surgical and allied training, and research study has been his dedication to contribute toward improving public health.

Ronn’s preparation for his vocation came early in his formative years.  His father served as WWII Navy Medical Corpsman and followed his life spent in funeral service.  With a library at home filled with books on anatomy, first aid, field surgery, hygiene, micro, pathology, embalming and funeral directing his education began early.  Working alongside his father at the funeral home rendering care to the deceased and the bereaved and aggrieved survivors, his empathic caregiving internalized.  After one college semester, Ronn enlisted in the US Air Force Medical Service with assignments both hospitals and a field hospital.  With the enlistment over, he returned to college, majoring in biology and mortuary science. Ronn then went on to earn a Certificate in Mortuary Science, National Board Certification and a Maryland Mortician’s License in 1976, an AA degree in 1977, BS degree in 1981.  During his tenure as Director, he held faculty positions as instructor and associate professor teaching health and thanatology courses. In 1975-76, he proposed and amended State Anatomy Board laws and reformulated the State’s Body Donation Program to gain more public participation, then numbering only several hundred pre-death donations to the 75,000+ today, designed and developed various anatomical preparation methods for cadavers and specimens for gross and clinical study use.

 In 1978-79, Ronn established the protocols for the use of decedent bodies for clinical training for EMT and Paramedical programs and the first “hands-on” trauma ATLS courses.   In 1983, licensed in plastination, he began introducing polymer preserved specimens enhance gross anatomy courses, allied health and student/adult education.  Today, under Ronn’s leadership, the Board administers one of the largest and most successful willed body programs in the country and receives 2,600 decedent bodies per annum.    

 In 2010 Ronn established a state of the art Clinical Surgical Training Laboratory that is used daily and widely by many disciplines of surgery, trauma and allied health programs in Maryland and beyond.    In the mid 1980’s Ronn was invited to attend a meeting in NYC by Dr. Andy Payor; the group later formed the AACA.  The meeting and discussions were eye-opening.  Ronn has been a member of AACA since 1998.   From 2001-2007, he served as the first co-chair of the Anatomical Services Committee, previously a Special Interest Group (SIG) and as Councilor / Board Member from 2003-2006.