RLI Podcasts

Episode 9: James H. Thrall, MD, FACR

Leading with Integrity

May 16, 2019

In this episode, James H. Thrall, MD, FACR, Chair Emeritus of the Department of Radiology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Juan M. Taveras Distinguished Professor of Radiology, Harvard Medical School and former chair of the American College of Radiology’s Board of Chancellors discusses his experience in medical school at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, his groundbreaking digital transformation efforts at MGH, his focus on research and the innovative marketing initiative he led to garner stronger support from the physician community outside of radiology. He shares how he’s leveraged technology throughout his career to enhance the practice of radiology, as well as his unwavering commitment to developing generations of leaders who continue to make a difference in the lives of patients.

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About James H. Thrall, MD, FACR

James H. Thrall MD is a 1968 graduate of the University of Michigan Medical School. He completed his radiology and nuclear medicine training at Walter Reed Army Medical Center where he then served as Assistant Chief of Nuclear Medicine. In 1988 he was appointed as radiologist-in-chief at the Massachusetts General Hospital and as the Juan M Taveras professor of Radiology at Harvard Medical School. He held those positions for 25 years and now serves a Chairman Emeritus at MGH and as the Distinguished Taveras Professor of Radiology at HMS.

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Married to my wife Jean for 36 years. We enjoy doing many things together including playing golf, walking the waterfront in Boston, bicycling, puttering around Boston harbor in our little electric boat and traveling the world. Most impressive man-made objects in our travels were the pyramids in Egypt and the most outstanding natural beauty was in the Chilean fjords with their mountains and glaciers.

With a little more time to do things, I started playing the euphonium, a baritone pitch brass instrument. My instructor lives in my home town of Ann Arbor, Michigan and we use the internet for face-to-face lessons each week. Last December we got together in Ann Arbor to play in an event called “Tuba Christmas” that is open to all tuba and euphonium players. We had a total of around 65, a record number for Ann Arbor but well below the world record of over 800.

I am attempting to relearn the German language. After spending my junior year of college there, I never had a chance again to immerse myself in it. Boston has a Goethe Institute sponsored by the German government where I have taken language lessons. I hope to follow that up with some concentrated time in Germany.

On rainy days I love to read and more recently I attempt to do cross word puzzles. No, not the Sunday puzzle in the New York Times but the much easier ones offered in the Boston Globe. Not sure how anyone gets the answers for the former.

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