2019 Eugene Bleck Visiting Professors

Lawrence A. Rinsky, MD

Professor Emeritus Orthopaedic Surgery, Stanford

Lawrence Allen Rinsky was born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio.  He completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Cincinnati, followed by medical school at the University Cincinnati College of Medicine, where he graduated first in his class.  He was headed towards a cardiology residency on the East Coast, but changed his life course after an epiphany while drilling in a tibial Steinman pin.

He completed residency at Stanford, finishing in 1976, and immediately joined the Stanford as the youngest faculty member.

He worked with Dr. Eugene Bleck, and in 1982, and they then welcomed Dr. James Gamble to the team.  Showing an early interest in spine surgery, he has been part of the revolution of instrumentation from Herrington rods to pedicle screws.  In 1983, Dr. Rinsky did a sabbatical spine fellowship with Dr. Eduardo Luque in Mexico City. His work with Dr. Luque inspired the direction of his subsequent interest and practice.

Drs. Bleck and Rinsky were pioneers, performing the first anterior thoracolumbar spinal instrumentation at Stanford.  He headed the pediatric orthopaedics section at Stanford from 1987 until 2016, and was Orthopaedic Department Chair 2002 through 2004.  Dr. Rinsky has a long history of medical volunteerism going on 30 solo or group missions to Nicaragua, Peru, Ecuador, Guatemala, Colombia, Mozambique, and China, and has been an invited lecturer in most of those countries.  His specialty interests in pediatric orthopaedics include spine deformity, pediatric tumors, CP, and limb deformities.  

He has been married to his wife, Susan, for 51 years, and has 3 sons and 6 grandkids.  He considers his greatest medical accomplishment to be the skills and professionalism demonstrated by the residents, fellows, and foreign orthopaedic surgeons whom he helped to train.

James  G. Gamble, MD, PhD

Professor Orthopaedic Surgery, Stanford

James Gibson Gamble, III was born during some of the darkest days of the Second World War.  His Father was a soldier serving in the South Pacific, and his Mother was living with relatives in Leominster, Massachusetts. 

He grew up in Akron, Ohio, where he graduated from John R. Buchtel High School and ran cross-country, routinely losing but never once giving up with the goal of winning in sight.  He matriculated at Ohio State University where he earned his Bachelor of Arts degree.  

Gaining an NIH pre-doctoral fellowship, he studied biochemistry with Dr. Robert H. McCluer and received a Philosophical Doctorate in 1969, showing that mitochondria synthesize mRNA similar to the bacterial mechanism.  With an NIH post-doctoral fellowship, he spent two years at Johns Hopkins University studying bioenergetics and metabolic traffic across the inner mitochondrial membrane with Dr. Albert L. Lenninger.  Seeing the light, he entered the University of Maryland Medical School where he graduated Magna Cum Laude.  Intent upon studying neuropsychiatry, he did a year of residency in psychiatry before again seeing the light and switching to a general surgical internship, followed by an orthopaedic surgery residency at Maryland.  Recruited by Dr. Bleck and Dr. Rinsky, he came to Stanford in 1982, entering a busy pediatric orthopaedic practice with Dr. Bleck and his long-term orthopaedic co-conspirator, Dr. Rinsky.  

While at Stanford, Dr. Gamble earned a Master of Liberal Arts degree with a focus on nineteenth century English literature.  His published essays explore an interpretation of nineteenth century life through a modern medical lens.  His orthopaedic research and clinical practice concern improving the diagnosis and treatment of children with musculoskeletal conditions.  He has taught surgeons and treated children in many different countries.  One of his most gratifying experiences has been working with a generation of students and residents at Stanford.  

Dr. Gamble is married to Beatriz Lara-Gamble, and between the two of them, they enjoy their 7 children and 3 grandchildren.  Dr. Gamble has numerous avocations.  As a bibliophile, he collects and studies first-edition nineteenth and twentieth century English and American literature, Dickens and Steinbeck in particular.  In his greenhouse, he grows and propagates the fastidious Euphorbiaceae species.