Richard Swartz, M.D.

Lives Lived

Richard Swartz, M.D.

Winter 2022
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Richard Swartz (M.D. 1970), professor emeritus of internal medicine, died October 11, 2021, at the age of 75. Swartz was born in Charleston, West Virginia, raised in Detroit, and attended Mumford High School. He received his bachelor’s and medical degrees from U-M. Following his service in the Army, Swartz completed his internship and residency at Boston City Hospital, Harvard Medical School. He then completed a residency at Boston City Hospital, Boston University Medical School, and a nephrology fellowship at Beth Israel Hospital, Harvard Medical School. 

Swartz joined the U-M faculty as an assistant professor in 1977. He was promoted to associate professor in 1982 and full professor in 1987. In the Department of Nephrology, Swartz served as medical director of acute dialysis (1977-2007), chief of clinic (1988-91 and 2003-10), director of the inpatient service (1996-2001), and chief of staff (1999-2003). 

He was widely regarded for his expertise in the areas of chronic kidney disease, end-stage renal disease, and end-of-life care for patients. He published more than 100 peer-reviewed articles and presented regularly at national meetings. His expertise was also recognized by his appointment to the editorial board of the American Journal of Kidney Disease and in his role as assistant editor for Advances in Renal Replacement Therapy.

Swartz was the recipient of numerous awards, including the U-M H. Marvin Pollard Award for outstanding resident teaching and the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan’s Distinguished Service Award. He was listed as one of the “Best Doctors in America” every year since 2006. His commitment, dedication, and advocacy to his patients, coworkers, and students drove him throughout his long career.

Swartz was dedicated to his family and friends, of which he had many. He was a loving husband, an amazing father, and a doting grandfather. He also was an avid cyclist, fisherman, world traveler, crossword-puzzle afficionado, cribbage player, cook, scholar, and reader.


This obituary is based on one published in the Ann Arbor News.