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The Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine is sorry to announce the passing of Dr. Donald Krogstad, a long-time professor of tropical medicine and a renowned malaria researcher. Don was a major contributor to the school and was known as an excellent colleague to the many faculty and researchers with whom he worked.

Donald J Krogstad M.D. passed away at home in Palm Coast, Florida on August 14th at age 77. He retired from Tulane University in October of 2019.    

Dr. Krogstad was a physician and researcher who devoted his life to the treatment of infectious diseases, with an emphasis on malaria. That interest was first triggered when doing a two-month elective in Haiti at Hôpital Albert Schweitzer during his final year of medical school. It was furthered by two years at CDC as an EIS officer followed by a two-year stint as a physician in the Peace Corps in Malawi (1973-75). During his Malawi service he was proud to have treated a significant cholera outbreak in which he believed he was able to save many lives.

He became an internationally respected malaria researcher while at Washington University in Saint Louis. While on sabbatical at the NIH he was recruited to be chair of the Department of Tropical Medicine in the SPHTM of Tulane University in New Orleans. Don was a major contributor to the school and was known as an excellent colleague and mentor to the many faculty, researchers, and students with whom he worked in different leadership positions. Following his time as Department Chair Dr. Krogstad was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to advance infectious disease research and training in Mali, West Africa. This allowed him to lead a team of investigators from the US and West Africa to establish an NIH-funded International Center of Excellence in Malaria Research in 2010.  

Dr. Krogstad was known for his gentle nature, diligence, collegial partnerships, and the students in whom he invested so much of his energy. He was always grateful for the opportunities and educational advancement that his undergraduate (Bowdoin 1965) and medical degree (Harvard 1969) programs afforded him. He is survived by his wife Fran, sons, Aric and Kirk, as well as three grandchildren. Donations can be made in memory of Don Krogstad, Past-President of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, at on the donation page or to Hôpital Albert Schweitzer Haiti,

24 Replies to “In Memoriam: Dr. Donald Krogstad”

  1. Memory on a wonderful teacher
    In a time of thankfulness, I am celebrating the life of my beloved teacher, Donald J. Krogstad, MD. My journey with Don began in August 1996. Jackie Alger, Ousmane Koita, Yao-lung Tsai, and Seydou Doumbia were also around during my time. We had a Monday seminar where each student presented their works and discussed the problems. We always fondly remember this time as a joyful moment with comments coming from many people, including Frank Cogswell, who had to drive across the Lake Pontchartrain and Fran Krogstad. With his kind nature, Don always guides us in a Platonian style to develop the knowledge on our studies. We love how his expression of “A ha” when students say something interesting.
    While he prowess in his knowledge of malaria research, Don was a superb doctor in caring for patients. Sometimes Don asked me to follow him on his early morning ward-round in the hospital, and I was impressed how deep his clinical skills in guiding infectious diseases fellows. Not only that, once Don asked me what my father did, and I informed him that my father loved mathematics, and directly Don talked about mathematics. During my time, I learned how hard Don was working, and we learned from him the importance of time management. He always informed us about the problem of our works in nice ways.
    After graduating in 2002, Don congratulated me by saying, “Now you are doctor squared,” as Jackie, Seydou, and I were medical doctors before becoming his students. We still met during the ASTMH meeting, and Don is a Life Member of the organization. His love for supporting the works on tropical medicine continued through his works with Ousmane and Seydou in Mali.
    Now, it is the time for all his students to keep Don’s love for helping the people from the dire effects of tropical diseases. Thank you, Don, for being a wonderful teacher and human being.

  2. AS CEO of ASTMH, I knew Don only after many years post his Presidency. Nevertheless, I saw him at most if not all the Annual Meetings continuing to contribute in formal and informal ways. If he wasn’t a speaker, he was meeting with current and former mentees, speaking to a reporter, had someone waiting to talk with him, and/or was talking with other former ASMTH Presidents – and always ready with kind words of support and encouragement. I had occasions over the years to contact him and every single time he helped me out promptly and without question. It was always a reminder to me of what a professional he was, and with a big heart.

  3. Don was a great collaborator and mentor. I enjoyed every bit of our interaction in the ICEMR and his meticulous approach to ensuring proper note of actions and quality of data was a lesson for me. His mark on malaria research and development of African scientists will not be forgotten. We deeply miss him.

  4. I met Don the first time, in 2009 in Dakar, Senegal and thereafter was fortunate to work with him in the ICEMR West Africa consortium, which he led for the next several years. It was always a pleasure to him drop in on us, at the Gambia, something he did with such regularity that we always marvelled at his outstanding commitment and stamina. Don was a calming influence on all of us and eventually built a family out of the disparate teams in Mali, Senegal and Gambia. Despite his lofty achievements in international research, Don always showed as much interest in the progress of each member of the team as in the next key research question. I have very fond memories of driving the 6-8 hours journey to our upcountry field site with Don and other colleagues from Tulane University. On several visits to New Orleans, in the course of the ICEMR project, Don was always such a gracious host and a calm and steady presence. It was such a privilege to know you, Don. Working with you made such a lasting impact on the team in Gambia and you will be sorely missed.

  5. I met Don for the first time in 1994, as I was prepping to go into the field for my first research project as a PhD student in the Dept. of Epidemiology at Tulane. He gave me my first prescription for mefloquine for that trip to Mali, beginning a long professional association with both Don and that fascinating country. Don was always available as a mentor and advisor throughout my PhD program. Later, I moved on to other positions, but continued to do work in Mali off and on. In 2011, I joined the President’s Malaria Initiative and was assigned to backstop Mali. On my frequent trips there (and Senegal too sometimes), I would often run into Don working at Ousmane Koita’s lab inspiring a new generation of Malian researchers in malaria control. Throughout his illustrious career, Don always put mentoring students, especially Malian students, at the forefront of his endeavors. He contributed greatly to the outstanding cadre of Malian researchers at MRTC and LBM in Bamako now, and the tremendous body of work they continue to generate. His legacy lives on in those Malian researchers and their contributions to malariology. He will be deeply missed.

  6. I was fortunate to have Don Krogstad, as a mentor, a leadership builder and a family for me. When I first met Don in 1993 at the Malaria Research and Training Center in Mali
    I was impressed by his scientific talent, his humility, his attachment to family value and friendship. My journey started with Don when he invited me at Tulane and facilitate my enrolment to Ph.D program in Epidemiology. Don had a vision of building a multidisciplinary capacity for next generation of African scientists.
    He attached a strong value to the training of African scientists in malaria epidemiology and modern biology combined with public health experience. He introduced me to Dr. Eric S.Johnson and Fran Mother for supervision in Epidemiology and Biostatistics emphasizing on strengthening those capacity in Mali. He made me attend to several Clinical Rounds at University Hospital to connect to clinical research on infectious diseases. He was committed to innovation and technology transfer in Africa, facilitating capacity building in GIS/S, molecular biology, and Bioinformatics, to integrate those skills in public health research. Don prepared me for scientific competitions and competing for research and training grants as independent researcher. Beside research and academic activities, Fran and Don support our family and contributed to our career development for research and academic leadership. I thank the Krogstad’s family for their generous donation to establish the new Donald Krogstad Award for Early-Career Malian Scientists. Don Krogstad will be remembering for ever for his great achievement in research and academic leadership development in Africa.

  7. I met Dr.Krogstad 2001 . I feel very fortunate he was my first boss after I moved to America. He was generous, gentle, intelligent, patience and successful researcher. For me, he was not only a boss, he also was friend and family. He and Fran supported me going through hard time in my life. He had a tremendously positive and profound impact on my life. I miss him dearly!

  8. I will always be grateful for the opportunity I had to work in Mali, over a decade ago, as a MHIRT student researcher with Dr. Krogstad’s team. In fact, I consider it to be the formal beginning of my international public health and development career and I will never forget the people and warm experiences that cultivated my desire to live and work abroad.

    Dr. Krogstad will certainly be missed and his contributions never forgotten.

  9. I started working with Dr K in 2010. The project was a lot of work and at times a roller coaster, his calm steady leadership was exactly what our group needed.
    On a personal note, it was a time of transitions for me and I always knew that I could go to him for comfort and guidance. I miss stopping by his office to chat about life, I miss going to 9 roses for lunch, I miss Dr K. He became a mentor and a trusted colleague. Most importantly though, he became a dear friend. I will always look back on our time together with fondness and joy. You are missed my friend.

  10. Don has left an indelible mark on the minds of so many people that he touched! I first met Don in 1999, when I arrived at Tulane. Needless to say, I was immediately impressed by his brilliance. Although it took me a while to get used to his way of thinking and expressing himself, it was only later on that we became friends. The vivid memories of coming across him while hurrying between Tulane buildings, being stopped and then delving into long conversations right there on LaSalle street, still stay with me. Once he became free of department admin responsibilities, he had more time to drop in by my office for informal chats etc. I loved hearing his stories. He had a wealth of experience to draw upon, and it was interesting to hear about them, right from his time in medical school (with Michael Crichton as his classmate!)
    We all miss you, Don! Latha

  11. Starting a PhD right during Katrina, was challenging! Dr. Krogstad was a great mentor and an inspiring teacher. I appreciate his guidance! During my PhD. program I learned not only about mechanisms of drug resistance to malaria, but also how to cultivate perseverance. He will be missed!

  12. I wouldn’t be where I am now in my career without Don’s guidance, mentorship, and friendship. As my PhD he always had my best interest in mind and offered me the best advice needed to help me advance my career, and I valued that advice so much that I continued to seek it throughout my career. I continue to be amazed by the impact he has had on those around him both personally and professionally, as is evidenced by the words here as well as the legacy of excellent scientists he has mentored. I would be proud to have even a fraction of the impact he has had on malaria, and my only regret is that I didn’t thank him for his impact on me and let him know how much his mentorship meant to me more often while we were together. You will be missed Don.

  13. Don embodied everything you wish for in an academic and reseacher. He went about his work with a level of calmness that is infectious. I will miss him.

  14. Dr. Donald Krogstad was a longtime mentor, colleague, and friend of mine. He was one of the most intelligent people I have ever known…a real big picture thinker. I was fortunate to have carried out international research activities and traveled with Dr. Krogstad on numerous occasions, mostly to Mali, The Gambia, and Senegal. During our time together, something that influenced me was Dr. Krogstad’s ability to make everyone around him feel important.

    I fondly remember our regular office meetings and what I would give for another one of them! Dr. Krogstad would prepare the most eloquently written, lengthy e-mails and follow them up with a phone call (to make sure they were received, read, and understood). Dr. Krogstad had a way of bringing large groups of international collaborators together focused on a common goal. He showed me how to be an effective team player, leader, and communicator. I also recall Dr. Krogstad regularly mentioning the importance of pursuing regional, collaborative solutions to public health problems by considering problems in other countries as your own, which also influenced me.

    I remain deeply saddened by Dr. Krogstad’s passing, but I take comfort in knowing that his work will perpetually inspire others. Dr. Krogstad had a tremendously positive and profound impact on my life. Thank you so much, Dr. Krogstad, and rest in peace, my dear friend.

  15. Dr K was an outstanding Professor, Mentor, Researcher and a dear friend. I always felt so insignificant around him UNTIL he spoke and you realized just how generous and gentle a man he was. I spent many hours, all hours of the day and night, working with Dr K on his grant submissions. It was an honor and a privilege.
    He is gone from this world but will never be forgotten.

    Ron Cail, MHA
    Past Senior Department Administrator
    Tulane Department of Tropical Medicine

  16. I feel very fortunate to have have known Don. I often spoke to my family about Don telling them of his pleasant demeanor, patience, intelligence, and professional contributions. It is rare to know someone with so many good characteristics. I learned so much from Don, not just professionally, but through his kindness towards everyone. Some people talk about helping others, Don just did it.

  17. The kind soul that he was, Dr. Krogstad knowing that my husband Steve and I were dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, he offered for Steve and I to stay with he and Fran (Fran did you know this? 🙂 . Also , knowing that I am in the Sponsored Projects Office, he promised not to bother me with his needs for his project in Mali. Not sure about that, but I would have done whatever possible to help!
    He also discovered that I arrived to work very early in the a.m., so this was his in to meet with me. I would arrive at the door and he would be there with a cup of coffee for me and it worked EVERYTIME!
    I miss him dearly!

  18. I first met Don when he hired me as a project coordinator for his studies testing the anti-malarial drug that he developed. I was then a PhD student in the Department of Epidemiology. Very soon he was not my boss anymore. He became a teacher, a mentor, and a close friend with the best that these words mean. He touched my and my family lives in so many ways, but I will tell only one story about him. After Hurricane Katrina hit, we, his research team, came back to the half-destroyed city to continue working in his lab at Tulane. We were all a kind of off-balance and under severe distress. Don sensed that. So, one day he took us–his entire team, with our families–to Baton Rouge, where he and Fran had a big house. And he showed each one of us, literally, in which room we are going to stay in case another hurricane hits New Orleans. This was Don’s way of showing empathy and support.
    Sure enough, Hurricane Gustav hit us two years later, and we all took shelter in Don and Fran’s home in Baton Rouge.

  19. Don Krogstad was a perfect example of what a Tropical Medicine expert should be. He combined extensive clinical field experience with superb research skills. He never failed in supporting his colleagues and friends. He was ambitious too, as shown by his development of a new antimalarial drug. He was determined to reach his goals without fear of barriers and challenges. I remember being concerned about Don being in the middle of a conflict zone, but he told me “Don’t worry, I sleep in the lab.” We miss Don and his calm and reassuring presence at Tulane.

  20. I considered Don a mentor, colleague and friend. His advice and wisdom that he gave me throughout the years were always timely, and spot on. I will miss him.

  21. I would like to share that Don visited Honduras, Central America, to participate in the V Meeting of the Central American Society of Parasitology and Tropical Medicine which took place in Tegucigalpa in August 2001. Within that meeting, a Tulanian Reunion was organized as a welcoming and interchange among Tulane University faculty and alumni from Honduras and elsewhere that were participating in that meeting. In addition to Don, in this reunion also participated Antonio D’Alessandro (RIP), Elizabeth Didier and Daniel Bausch. You can see details and pictures of this reunion in the Asociación Hondureña de Parasitología web site at the Honduras Virtual Health Library:

    Don gave two talks during the meeting. His visit meant a lot and he was very supportive as he used to be. He is very much missed in our related organizations, Asociación Hondureña de Parasitología (AHPA) and Instituto de Enfermedades Infecciosas y Parasitología Antonio Vidal.

  22. I’m touched and privileged to be able to share a few thoughts about Don here. I first met Don around 1993 when I was a Tulane ID Fellow and he was the new Head of the Trop Med Department. We were soon on service together at Charity Hospital and got along well. As an attending, he had the knowledge to guide me when needed, and the faith in me to afford me the right degree of independence so I could build my skills and confidence. This started a long period of Don providing mentorship and contributing to my professional development. After completing my Fellowship and MPH&TM, I moved on to other opportunities in applied public health and research with CDC, but Don kept in touch, and always left the door open for a return to Tulane. As it turned out, in 2003 the time was right for such a move. Don continued to play an important mentorship role for me upon my return to Tulane, teaching me how to be an “academician”— how to set up a lab, apply for grants, recruit and mentor students, and build a program. He was always patient, thoughtful, and sincere. His guidance was a major factor in enabling me to build a successful career in tropical medicine. Thanks Don. We will miss you, but your legacy lives on in the many people you’ve trained and lives you’ve touched.

    With affection and respect,
    Dan Bausch

    ID Fellowship and MPH&TM, 1992-94
    Faculty Member in various contexts since then

  23. Don Krogstad is present in his contributions that continue to develop and stand out in the endemic countries where his students and collaborators are. He is very much missed.

  24. Thank you all for contributing to this blog post honoring Don Krogstad. A great malaria investigator, an inspiring mentor, and a dedicated advocate for ASTMH and the field of tropical medicine. He is and will be greatly missed!

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