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University of California, San Francisco

Excellence Integrity Relationship


William Elder Jr., M.D.

Wright State University, Boonshoft School of Medicine; Bill spent the first year of his life in Omaha, Nebraska before his family decided to move out West. He grew up in the Rocky Mountains of Genesee, Colorado where he first fell in love with nature. He was forced to leave the mountains as his family moved to Northern California, but he quickly found the Pacific Ocean every bit as powerful and majestic as the Rockies. His family continued to move numerous times allowing Bill (“Billy” at the time) to live in Florida, Southern California, and Ireland. He returned to the Bay Area to study Human Biology and Ethics in Society at Stanford. He was always fascinated by science as a child, but his entire world-view changed when he was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis (CF) at 8 years old. Inspired by his CF doctors and the comprehensive approach to patient care in the CF clinic, Bill began to see that he could unite his love of science with his passion for helping others through the study of medicine. Bill has spent years working on behalf of the CF Foundation including testifying in front of Congress regarding the “Breakthrough Drug” designation at the FDA and being involved in CF research. In 2012, a new drug (ivacaftor) was approved by the FDA that targets the basic defect in CF. Bill saw dramatic changes in his health with this new drug and suddenly his dream to become a doctor was within reach. During his third year of medical school in Dayton, OH he was invited to be a guest of the First Lady at the 2015 State of the Union Address and later at the President’s Precision Medicine Initiative. Bill aspires to practice humanism in medicine and serve his local community. His hobbies include guitar, knitting, running, hiking, automotive racing, and video games.

Alumni Year: 2019