Walter Mazen, Sr., M.D., receives Enloe’s Physician Legacy Award

Walter S. Mazen, Sr., M.D., a community physician in Chico since 1950 and a member of Enloe’s Medical Staff since 1969, received the 2006 Enloe Physician Legacy Award. Dr. Mazen’s son Walter Mazen, Jr., presented the award at Enloe’s Medical Executive Committee meeting.

Dr. Mazen received his medical education from the University of California San Francisco Medical School in 1945, and then completed an internship at San Francisco County Hospital and a residency at San Mateo County Hospital, which included serving as chief resident in medical-surgical services. After his schooling, Dr. Mazen worked as a general practice physician in San Mateo until he moved to Chico in 1950, where we served the community as a specialist in Family Practice.

Early in his career, Dr. Mazen worked with the local health department and traveled throughout Butte and Glenn counties immunizing adults against tetanus, polio and diphtheria. He also worked with patients suffering from post-polio syndrome.

In 1998, the California Medical Association recognized Dr. Mazen with the Frederick Plessner Award for Outstanding Contribution. He also received the 1997 Salvation Army Community Service Award, the 2002 Seniors in Retirement Award for outstanding service, as well as the 2005 Enloe Foundation Outstanding Community Service Award.

Dr. Mazen has provided  many years of service to community organizations throughout the area. He belonged to the Chico State Association since its onset. Also a member of the local Rotary, he received the Paul Harris Fellowship, Rotary’s lifetime achievement award. He also worked with a select group of doctors who worked with the local Boy Scouts organization for many years, providing physicals and immunizations to boy scouts going to summer camp, often free of charge.

Dr. Mazen has served as president of the Butte-Glenn Medical Society, and as a member of SIRS, the Lake Almanor Racing Sailing Club, the Elks Club and the SOSES (Secret Order of the Single Egg Society), a fly fisherman’s club. He has also been involved with the Chico Community Concert Association and its board for more than 30 years, including time as president.

Comments from Legacy Award nominations include:

  • “He was the quintessential ‘country doctor’. He has been a wonderful representative of the medical community in general and is an admirable citizen who is a valuable role model for us all.” – Bob Ryan
  • “I’d like to nominate Dr Mazen … as a testament to all the patients he once cared for who have since expressed to me their admiration of his caring demeanor, empathy, wit, remarkable clinical abilities and dedication.” – Attila Kasza, MD
  • “(For being) a Chico MD for 45-50 years, a hospital leader, community leader, national leader, world leader and fisherman” – Joe Matthews, MD
  • “True old-fashioned doc” – Vimali Paul, MD
     

During the Legacy Award presentation, Marcia Nelson, MD, Enloe’s Vice President of Medical Affairs, said that Dr. Mazen “is a true inspiration to this present generation of physicians. He embodies what is great and admirable about this profession: compassion, caring, integrity. He has continued to live out his professional passion well beyond when many others have fully retired. Walt is all about relationships and his patients and colleagues are richer because of that.”

The first recipient for the award, introduced in 2004, was Donald Heithecker, M.D., an ear, nose and throat specialist. The 2005 recipient was Pediatrician James Wood, M.D. See a list of the Enloe Physician Legacy Award recipients.

The Physician Legacy Award selection process includes a review of nominations made by Enloe physicians, administrators, employees, volunteers and patients. The Medical Executive Staff makes the final decision. Criteria includes an Enloe physician whose leadership at the hospital and in the community both locally and at large has changed our world for the better; who has been a member of the medical staff for more than one year; and who has excellent clinical knowledge and skill.

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