Dr. David Seitzman...distinguished physician, military officer, groundbreaking entrepreneur, business leader...died at the age of 92 on March 7, 2021 in Sarasota, Florida. Growing up in Passaic, New Jersey, his next stop was Vanderbilt University (1947 – 1954) for his B.A. and M.D. degrees. There he met and married (1952) the love of his life, Rochelle Pollack. Their two children Stephen and Mona, have added adored grandchildren (5) and great-grandchildren (4) to the family.
From Vanderbilt, Dr. Seitzman headed to Yale for his internship, and then in 1956, by way of the generosity of the military and via San Antonio, Texas and the Army’s Medical Field Service School, to Walter Reed General Hospital in Washington, DC. Upon completing his three-year residency in urology, he became a staff member at Walter Reed and ultimately Assistant Chief of Urology. Leaving the Army in 1963 as a Major, Dr. Seitzman entered a private urologic practice that grew rapidly into a major player in the Washington, DC medical community.
Dr. Seitzman became one of the most renowned urologic surgeons in Washington, DC. He was loved and revered by his patients. But as hard as he worked, he also found time to ride his bike, enjoy a good cognac and scotch, and play...and regularly win...at bridge. And because being a great doctor was not enough for him, Dr. Seitzman found multiple ways to contribute to medicine outside of the surgical suite, contributions that impacted lives beyond those of his patients and that he continued to make throughout his career.
He had and brought to medicine a prescient view of the future and tremendous financial acumen. Well before others, Dr. Seitzman saw the need for outpatient surgery, also called “same day” or ambulatory surgery. He developed one of the first free-standing ambulatory surgical centers in the U.S., with its success leading others throughout the country to duplicate his model. While it was difficult at the time to convince both physicians and insurance companies that outpatient surgery could be done safely, today surgery is routinely done on an outpatient basis.
In 1976 Dr. Seitzman helped develop a 120,000 square-foot medical building in downtown Washington, DC and became the managing partner of a group that owned a 50% interest in that building. In 1980 he helped start a successful physician-owned medical malpractice company, called NCRIC, which became a publicly traded company in 1999. He served on its Board as Treasurer and was Chair of the Finance and Audit Committees, continuing to serve until the company was sold in 2005.
Dr. Seitzman was devoted to and a leader in his profession in other ways as well. He became active in the Washington Medical Society early in his career, subsequently becoming Chair of its Finance Committee, President in 1989 and Chairman of the Board. He sat on the Boards of BlueShield, Board of BlueCross, and finally the Board of the combined Blue Cross & BlueShield. From 1996 – 2003 he served on the Boards of Brown Brothers Harriman Family of Mutual Funds in New York.
While his professional achievements are part of Dr. Seitzman’s public legacy, it is in his private role and accomplishments as a loving husband and father, nurturing and supportive business partner, and loyal friend that he would want to...and will...be remembered. Indeed, he continues to live in the memory of those who admired and learned from him, who held him in esteem and whose love for him endures. The totality of Dr. Seitzman’s contributions is emblazoned in their minds and hearts. He will not be forgotten. May his memory be for a blessing.
The care of Dr. Seitzman and his family has been entrusted to David C. Gross Funeral Home.