Richard G. Ellenbogen was born in New York in 1958 and attended New York Public Schools followed by Brown University and Brown University Medical School on an US Army Scholarship. After his surgical internship at Walter Reed Army Medical Center he completed his residency at Children’s Hospital/Brigham and Women’s Hospital/ Harvard Medical School Program, receiving the Farber Award for the most outstanding physician in the Harvard/Longwood area. During his assignment at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Dr. Ellenbogen was deployed to Saudi Arabia during Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm, serving as Commander of the 252nd Medical (Neurosurgical) /XVIII Airborne Corp and was awarded the Bronze Star. In 1996 he was selected as the first Chairman of the Combined Neurosurgical Residency Programs of Bethesda Naval Hospital and Walter Reed Army Medical Center.
Dr. Ellenbogen arrived at The University of Washington in Seattle in late 1997, as a Pediatric Neurosurgeon at Children’s Hospital & Regional Medical Center, and Associate Professor of Neurological Surgery with the University of Washington School of Medicine. Dr. Ellenbogen, was appointed Chief of the Division of Neurological Surgery at Children’s Hospital & Regional Medical Center in January 1998. In 1999, Dr. Ellenbogen was awarded the Theodore S. Roberts Endowed Chair in Pediatric Neurosurgery. In 2002, Dr. Ellenbogen was appointed Acting Chairman for the Department of Neurosurgery and in July 2004 became the official Professor and Chairman for the Department of Neurosurgery, University of Washington School of Medicine. That same year, a grateful and generous donor named an Endowed Chair after him to recruit another Pediatric Neurosurgeon to the UW. Dr. Ellenbogen’s practice is somewhat unusual in that is encompasses both a pediatrics and adult emphasis. He primarily performs brain tumor, craniofacial and birth defect operations at the Children’s Hospital, and performs trauma, brain tumor, and spine operations at Harborview Medical Center. He is fortunately surrounded by a substantial group of academically/surgically gifted and dedicated colleagues at the University of Washington, who have made his current job a pleasure.
His NIH research projects cover two disparate topics. He is funded to study the CSF physiology, MRI anatomy and clinical presentation of patients with Chiari malformations, and is a co-PI on an NIH contract to study the application of Nanotechnology to targeted molecular therapies and molecular imaging of pediatric brain tumors. His peer-reviewed publications have covered those two topics as well as trauma and spine subjects. He has been on the Scientific and Annual Meeting Committee of the CNS for over a decade and is currently the President-elect of the CNS. He is an active member of the ASPN, and recently finished a term as its Scientific/Annual Meeting Program Director. He is currently one of the Section Editors for the journal Neurosurgery. He and Setti Rengachary just (2004) published a general textbook called Principles of Neurosurgery.
Dr. Ellenbogen has been married to Sandy Ellenbogen for nearly 2 decades and has three children, ages 16 to 11. His hobbies include fly fishing, skeet shooting and skiing, none of which he has time to do particularly well.