Nearly a century ago, Dr. William Mayo set the standard for treatment of patients at Mayo Clinic with these words, "the needs of the patient are the only needs to be considered." In 2003, the IMF decided to bestow a Lifetime Achievement Award annually to a physician whose work against myeloma reflected the dedication and compassion inherent in Dr. Mayo's vow. The IMF chose to name this award for Robert A. Kyle, M.D., whose life and work give new meaning to these words.
In his more than 40 years at Mayo Clinic, Dr. Kyle has never wavered from his commitment to the needs of patients with multiple myeloma. He has devoted his life's work to them. He has gained recognition the world over as a pioneer and respected leader in the advancement of research, clinical treatment, and education about myeloma.
When Brian Novis began doing his research to learn more about his disease, he was looking for the finest doctor available to help him. When he heard about Dr. Robert A. Kyle at the Mayo Clinic, Brian didn't know at the time that Dr. Kyle was considered to be the "grandfather" of myeloma treatment.
When Brian Novis and Brian Durie decided to create an international foundation dedicated to helping others with myeloma, the first person they contacted was Dr. Kyle. With a simple phone call, Dr. Kyle agreed to collaborate with the two Brians. He became a founding member of the Board of Directors and chairman of the IMF Scientific Advisory Board, a position he still holds today.
Dr. Kyle is the most frequently requested speaker at the IMF Patient & Family Seminars around the world. Through the IMF, Dr. Kyle has made himself accessible to thousands of patients and their families as well as to IMF staffers. His guidance and encouragement are as important today as when the IMF first began.
When Dr. Kyle was first approached about receiving his own Robert A. Kyle Lifetime Achievement Award his response to Susie Novis was, "I'm not done yet." His humility, dedication, sense of humor, and truly caring and compassionate nature are among the many reasons for which the IMF named this award in his honor.