President and CEO of Life Connection of Ohio, Dayton, OH
Clinical Instructor, Department of Urology, Department of Public Health,
School of Allied Health and Graduate Faculty
University of Toledo Medical Center
Class of 1973
Michael G. Phillips, following four years of military service, returned to his home state of Indiana and enrolled in pre-med at Indiana University. He completed three years of undergraduate studies before enrolling in the PA program at Duke University. He received his Bachelor of Health Science from Duke and completed the PA program in 1973. During his training at Duke, Mike became captivated with organ procurement, and he has devoted his career to preservation and transplantation . He worked as the Transplant Coordinator and Chief of Organ Procurement and Tissue Donation at Duke and UNC until 1981. From 1981 until 1996 he was the Director of the Alabama Organ Center at University of Alabama-Birmingham. He accepted the position of President and Chief Executive Officer at Life Connection of Ohio (LCO) in 1998 and currently holds that position; LCO is an independent, non-profit, organ procurement organization designated to serve 23 counties in northwest and west central Ohio.
Mike's contributions to the field of organ and tissue transplantation are numerous; he is described by his peers as a pioneer in this field of medicine. His extensive writings include two books (Organ Procurement, Preservation and Distribution: 1st and 2nd ed.), book chapters, hand books, and journal publications. Remarkably, he has been directly involved in recovering organs from over 2,000 donors. Mike and the team at UAB began heart, heart-lung, lung, liver and pancreas procurement and transplantation and a bone and tissue recovery and processing program during the early 1980’s. They also began the heart valve homograft procurement and processing program, which was duplicated nationally and internationally. He has been a leader in national organizations such as: United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS), South Eastern Organ Procurement Foundation (SEOPF), North American Transplant Coordinators Association (NATCO), International Society for Organ Preservation (ISOP), and the Association of Organ Procurement Organizations (AOPO).
His vision for a program to teach, train and prepare students to work in the field and, ultimately, decrease the high turnover rate of procurement coordinators in the U S became a reality in 2003 at the University of Toledo Medical Center. Starting as a one year graduate certificate program, the Human Donation Science (HDS) Program has grown into a Master’s Degree Program and Mike, the program’s founder, serves as Clinical Instructor, Department of Urology and Department of Public Health, School of Allied Health and Graduate Faculty.