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Tenney, Stephen Marsh, 1922-2000



  • Existence: 1922 - 2000

Stephen Marsh Tenney was born in Normal, Illinois and was a graduate of Dartmouth College, Class of 1944. He attended Dartmouth Medical School and received his MD from Cornell University College of Medicine in 1946. Dr. Tenney trained in internal medicine at the Strong Memorial Hospital at the University of Rochester and returned there in 1949, after two years in the U.S. Navy, serving as senior medical officer in Shanghai, China. Except for one year as a teaching fellow at Dartmouth Medical School in 1950-51, Tenney served on the staff of the Strong Memorial Hospital and as a member of the faculty of the University of Rochester until 1956 as a Markle Scholar in Medical Sciences.

In 1956 Tenney returned to Dartmouth to establish the department of physiology at the medical school. He would serve as chair of that department for 21 years. Simultaneously, upon his arrival in Hanover, he was appointed Associate Dean for Planning and Research and charged with the responsibility of initiating what became known as the "refounding" of the medical school, which was at that time offering a two-year program in the basic medical sciences, with eight faculty and 46 students. A year later Dr. Tenney was appointed to the newly-created position of Director of Medical Sciences with overall leadership of the school in order to expedite the reorganization. He was also appointed Dean of the Medical School in 1960 following the death of Rolf Syverton in an automobile accident.

Tenney resigned as Dean in 1962 in order to concentrate on teaching and research as professor and chairman of the physiology department. At the time of his resignation the medical school faculty had risen to 60 and the student body to nearly 100. Tenney served two more terms as acting dean, in 1965-66 and again in 1973

For his scientific achievements Tenney was named a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1970 and a member of the Institute of Medicine at the National Academy of Sciences in 1974, the same year was appointed Nathan Smith Professor at Dartmouth Medical School. In 1988, Tenney received the highest honor from the American Thoracic Society, it's Presidential Citation for "lifelong contributions to the understanding of pulmonary and circulatory physiology and disease." Tenney died on October 28, 2000 in Hanover, NH.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Stephen Tenney papers

Identifier: MS-901
Scope and Contents The papers of Stephen Tenney contain professional correspondence (restricted until 2036), planning documents, reports, theses, press releases, lecture notes, photographic slides, histories of Dartmouth Medical School and other material relating to Dr. Tenney's career at the Dartmouth Medical School.