Joel Swartz was born and raised in Toledo, Ohio, and graduated from Devilbiss High School in 1967. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics from Ohio State University, Columbus, in 1971. He remains an intense and loyal Ohio State Buckeye football fan. Joel attended George Washington University Medical School in Washington, DC, and graduated in 1975. After completing a rotating internship at Riverside Methodist Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, Joel completed his residency in diagnostic radiology at the University of Michigan in 1979. Afterward, he moved to Philadelphia to become fellow in neuroradiology at the University of Pennsylvania.
Joel and Nina were married on July 1, 2000. Nina is a kindergarten teacher. The Swartz family includes three sons, Matthew, aged 21 years, who is a junior at the University of Pennsylvania; Daniel, aged 18 years, a freshman at Penn State University, and Charles (“Chucky”), aged 11 years, who is in sixth grade. The Swartz family also has a 1-year-old beagle named Eddie. Joel has two brothers: Bob, a retired plastic surgeon who is living in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, and Jim, a pharmacist who lives in Toledo and Palm Beach Gardens, as well. Joel’s mother, Belle Swartz, lives in Toledo. His father, Charles Zale Swartz, passed away in 1987.
Joel’s interest in the temporal bone dates back to his medical school anatomy class, during which he discovered that he was far more interested in the skull base than in other areas. This discovery stimulated his interest in the ear, nose, and throat (ENT) specialty, and he was interviewed for otolaryngology and radiology residencies at the same time. His interest in the temporal bone was piqued when he attended a refresher course that Tom Bergeron presented at the Radiological Society of North America annual meeting in 1978. Joel spent many hours near the end of his residency investigating the anatomy while reading the December 1974 issue of the Radiologic Clinics of North America numerous times. Joel chose to complete a fellowship at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia because of its busy otolaryngology department. During his first year as a junior staff member at the Medical College of Pennsylvania Hospital, under chairman George L. Popky and with the support of Drs Bob Wolfson and Frank Marlowe of the Division of Otolaryngology, Joel discovered his first really useful tool, a General Electric 8800 CT scanner. Confident that he could do a good job for their patients, Joel contacted virtually every ENT private practice in the Philadelphia area to tell them how interested he was in studying the ear and its diseases. The results were gratifying, and he was able to build many professional relationships that he still maintains to this day.
With his persistence and attentiveness to detail, Joel was able to amass the cases necessary to begin writing. His first real success in this area was an introductory trilogy that focused on high-resolution CT of the middle ear and mastoid, which appeared in Radiology in 1983. Since that time, Joel has enjoyed an outstanding career and is the authority in his field. Approximately 80 of Joel’s articles, mostly about the temporal bone, have been published. A text, Imaging of the Temporal Bone, co-authored with H. Ric Harnsberger of the University of Utah, was originally published in 1986, and it is now in its third edition. Joel has been a co-editor of the Seminars in Ultrasound, CT and MR since 1994.
Joel remained at the Medical College from 1981 to 1991 and became a professor in the Department of Radiologic Sciences. In 1991, Joel became chairman of the Department of Radiology at Germantown Hospital in Philadelphia, a position that he held until 1999. Also, during that time, he became interested in the business of providing efficient remote interpretation of MR and CT images via teleradiology. This is currently his primary pursuit, and he is responsible for providing comprehensive interpretive services for numerous locations in several states. He serves as the medical director of National Medical Imaging, a rapidly growing developer of free-standing imaging centers. His office is in the basement of his home in Villanova, Pennsylvania. Joel is also on the staff of the radiology departments at Cooper Hospital in Camden, New Jersey, and the Graduate Hospital in Philadelphia. In his spare time, he enjoys playing golf and taking long walks.
The American Society of Head and Neck Radiology is in good hands with Joel Swartz as its President.
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