FREDRIC BRUCE MEYER was born on May 5, 1955, in Springfield, Massachusetts. His father was a maxillofacial surgeon while his mother is a geriatric social worker. He spent much of his childhood growing up on Cape Cod where the favorite family activities included fishing, sailing, and skiing. Growing up on the Cape included many diverse experiences such as working in a fish market for over 13 years and serving as mate on lobster and swordfishing boats. This early experience on the docks taught him the value of hard work, discipline, and the importance of diversity.
He attended Deerfield Academy for high school and then received his B.A. with Honors at the University of Pennsylvania. Thereafter, he obtained his M.D. degree at Boston University in 1981. Dr. Edward Spatz, Chief of Neurosurgery was quite influential in his decision to become a neurosurgeon. Dr. Meyer subsequently trained at the Mayo Clinic from 1981 to 1988. Thereafter, under the guidance of Dr. Thoralf Sundt, he spent one additional year in cerebrovascular research. He was appointed to the Mayo Clinic as staff consultant in 1989. He rose through the academic ranks, becoming a full Professor in 1998. He was appointed Chair of the Department of Neurologic Surgery at the Mayo Clinic in July 2004 and named the Alfred Uihlein Family Professorship in Neurologic Surgery in 2006.
Dr. Meyer is proud to note that his training occurred during a true golden age of neurosurgery at Mayo. He was fortunate to learn under many great neurosurgeons including Drs. Thoralf Sundt, Edward Laws, Burton Onofrio, David Piepgras, Patrick Kelly, and Ross Miller. During his career he has won several awards including the CNS Resident Award in 1984, Honorable Mention Menninger Award in 1985, the Charles Elsberg Award in 1987, AANS Faculty Research Award 1989, and the Distinguished Alumnus Award from Boston University in 2000.
When first joining the Department of Neurosurgery he directed a basic science research laboratory that focused on the pathophysiology of stroke and epilepsy with an emphasis on calcium metabolism. From 1988 through 1998 he was the Principal Investigator on three NIH RO-1 research grants. Dr. Meyer has published over 325 articles in peer-reviewed journals, 3 books, over 50 book chapters, and a number of published editorials and abstracts. He has served on multiple institutional, national, and international committees and belongs to many of the major neurosurgical organizations including serving as president of the AAcNS and chair of the American Board of Neurological Surgery. He is a reviewer for multiple scientific journals and served as chair of the Editorial Board of the Journal of Neurosurgery. His emphasis on resident education is evidenced by having won the resident teacher of the year award 14 times. He has been honored by receiving a prestigious Mayo Clinic Distinguished Educator Award. As Chair and Program Director, he made teaching and scholarship a priority goal of the Department. He has a very active clinical practice performing over 350 major cases each year focused primarily on brain tumor, pituitary, epilepsy, and vascular pathologies.
He currently is the Uihlein Professor of Neurological Surgery, Enterprise Chair of Neurological Surgery at Mayo Clinic, Executive Director of the American Board of Neurological Surgery, the Distinguished Waugh Executive Dean of Education Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science, and the Dean of the Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine.
He is fortunate to work with a great group of colleagues, residents, nurses and operating room staff.
Certainly, the focus and love of his life is his wife and family. His wife, Dr. Irene Meissner, is Professor of Neurology at Mayo with a subspecialty interest in vascular disease. They have six children, three girls and three boys. Dr. Meyer’s extramural activities include fly-fishing and sailing.