Professor emeritus passes away

Dear colleagues,

Longtime and beloved faculty member Dr. Ken Kellner passed away on Saturday. Below is a note and biography from Dr. Stan Williams, chair of the department of obstetrics and gynecology. We will miss Ken, his infectious optimism and energy and his tremendous dedication to our UF medical students, residents and medical school.

Michael Good, M.D.
Dean, UF College of Medicine

A note from Stan Williams, M.D., chair of the department of obstetrics and gynecology:

It is with a heavy heart that I let everyone know that Dr. Ken Kellner passed Jan. 14 after a long battle with cancer. Below is a brief bio of who Ken was and his legacy that will live on in the department of obstetrics and gynecology and the College of Medicine, but most of all to his friends and family. Donations can be made in Dr. Kellner’s honor to Temple Shir Shalom (3855 NW 8th Ave., Gainesville, FL 32605), Haven Hospice or the American Cancer Society.


Kenneth R. Kellner, M.D., Ph.D.
Professor emeritus, division of maternal-fetal medicine

Dr. Kellner was raised on Long Island, New York, and began his career with an interest in embryology at Union College, where he was an Eliphalet Nott Scholar. Attending the State University of New York, Downstate Medical Center in the Combined-Degree Program, he received both a M.D. and Ph.D. degree in 1973 doing research in embryology. This was followed by a residency in obstetrics and gynecology at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami and a fellowship in maternal-fetal medicine at the University of Florida. He was board-certified in both fields and had been on the faculty of the University of Florida since 1977.

Dr. Kellner’s interests were diabetes and pregnancy and psychosocial aspects of obstetrics. He was director of the Perinatal Diabetes Program at the University of Florida and founder and director of the Perinatal Mortality Counseling Program. He was an internationally recognized expert on perinatal bereavement and perinatal loss, and served as president of the North American Society for Psychosocial Obstetrics and Gynecology.

Dr. Kellner was director of the Third-Year Clinical Clerkship in Obstetrics and Gynecology for 25 years. The Association of Professors of Gynecology and Obstetrics (APGO), the specialty’s national educational organization, recognized the UF clerkship as the best in the country. During his tenure, the clerkship was recognized by the graduating medical school class with the Golden Apple Award as the best clinical clerkship nine times, more than any other clerkship. He was recognized by the UF College of Medicine as an exemplary teacher every year and twice by his department with the J. Lee Dockery Teaching Award and APGO Award for teaching excellence. Dr. Kellner served on numerous educational committees and was instrumental in the development of many pioneering courses, clerkships and curriculum designs. In 2012, he was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the College of Medicine Society of Teaching Scholars, only the eighth faculty member so honored.

Since his retirement from clinical practice in 2012, Dr. Kellner continued to be active in student and resident education both at the college and departmental level. A dedicated family man, Dr. Kellner and his wife, Irene, had two sons and five grandchildren. In his leisure time, he enjoyed Gator sports, adventure travel, photography and tinkering.