Featured Profile

Gail Darling, MD

Thoracic surgery is a fantastic career- I love the complexity of the patient problems, the diversity and complexity of the surgical procedures that I do— I would get bored doing the same operations over and over. I really enjoy the holistic approach to the patient from diagnosis to treatment to follow up—I am not just a technician—I am a surgeon who is an expert in thoracic diseases and as such I need to know about all management options for patients including nonsurgical ones- I am the quarterback of their care and their advocate.

Dr. Darling is current chief of the Department of Surgery at Dalhousie University and previous Kress Family Chair in Esophageal Cancer at University Health Network and University of Toronto. She is also the International Society for Diseases of the Esophagus Chair for 2020 and a member of the Canadian Cancer Trials Group and Co-Chair for the Esophagogastric Disease Oriented Group. Professor Darling is internationally recognized as a leader in Thoracic Oncology clinical practice and research. She is also an author and co/author for over 160 Peer reviewed Journal Articles including Journal of Thoracic Cardiovascular Surgery, The Lancet Respiratory Medicine, Annals of Thoracic Surgery, American Journal of Gastroenterology and European Journal of Cardiovascular Surgery among others. Dr Darling is the editor in chief of Pearson’s Textbook of Thoracic Surgery.

Professor Darling has presented over 65 oral presentations as invited speaker at International, National and Regional scientific conferences. In March 2019, Professor Darling was the faculty speaker at the European Society of Thoracic Surgeons, Knowledge Track Course, invited speaker at University Hospitals Cleveland ( February 2019), F. Henry Ellis visting professor Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital Boston ( May 2019), Marvin Pomerantz Lecturer Denver ( April 2019), University of Chicago Benfield Lecturer and Surgical Grand Rounds lecturer ( September 2019), Brigham and Women’s Hospital Boston, Dana Farber Institute Boston ( November 2019).

In November of 2018, she was an Invited Lecturer at Cleveland Clinic Antonio Roselli Lecturer: Minimally Invasive Esophagectomy and Enhanced Recovery. In October 2017, she was the Clifton F. Mountain Invited Lecturer at MD Anderson Cancer Center. Professor Darling is also an active reviewer for numerous manuscripts for a variety of journals including Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, Annals of Thoracic Surgery and the Canadian Journal of Surgery.

As highlighted in her nomination by  Dr. Mara Antonoff:

“In terms of her achievements, Dr. Gail Darling is a giant in Thoracic surgery. She is a talented surgeon and researcher, and she has broken through immense barriers to pave the way for women behind her. Despite her phenomenal accomplishments, she is an approachable, humble, kind, and generous leader. She is always willing to offer words of wisdom or humor to those around her. She makes herself available to students, residents, and junior faculty members near and far, truly serving as a global mentor for so many. She leads by example and her long list of achievements are an inspiring legacy. Dr. Darling has given so much to support women in surgery, and we are so lucky to have her continued contributions to our specialty.”