William D. Edwards, M.D., was born in Kansas and began his lifelong love affair with the cardiovascular system after seeing Frank Capra's film "Hemo the Magnificent" in eighth-grade science class.
He graduated from the University of Kansas in 1970 and from the University of Kansas School of Medicine in 1974. His training in anatomic pathology was at the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City, and he had the privilege of training in cardiovascular pathology with Jesse E. Edwards, M.D., in St. Paul, Minn.
Dr. Edwards joined the staff at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., in 1978 and is still in practice on that campus. He achieved the academic rank of professor of pathology in 1988.
His general interest is in autopsy pathology, and his specialty interest is in all areas of diagnostic cardiovascular pathology, both acquired and congenital. He was a member of the panel of pathologists responsible for creating the Dallas criteria for the diagnosis of myocarditis in biopsy specimens. Moreover, he has an aptitude for superb medical photography and has published on this topic.
Dr. Edwards also has an avid interest in teaching and has garnered numerous teaching honors, including eight best teacher awards and the prestigious Mayo Distinguished Educator Award in 2013. He has presented many subspecialty conferences and short courses on cardiovascular disorders at the annual meetings of the United States and Canadian Academy of Pathology.
He has served as program director for Mayo Clinic's Cardiovascular Pathology Fellowship, head of the Cardiovascular Working Group and head of the Autopsy Working Group. Dr. Edwards has trained 12 fellows in cardiovascular pathology, including John P. Veinot, M.D.; Marie-Christine Aubry, M.D.; and Joseph J. Maleszewski, M.D.
He routinely interacts academically not only with other pathologists but also with adult and pediatric cardiologists, cardiovascular surgeons, and cardiovascular radiologists. These include clinicians specializing in congenital heart disease and cardiac imaging (particularly echocardiography), cardiac interventions and cardiac electrophysiology.
During his career, Dr. Edwards has authored or co-authored more than 420 peer-reviewed publications and more than 90 book chapters dealing with various aspects of cardiovascular diseases. In 2008, he received the Distinguished Achievement Award from the Society for Cardiovascular Pathology. He is a co-author of a forthcoming fascicle on non-neoplastic cardiovascular diseases.