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Remembering Dr. Jack Burks

We are saddened to share that Dr. Jack Burks passed away on November 18, 2022. Dr. Burks was a core founder of the Rocky Mountain MS Center, and was at the forefront of developing a comprehensive approach to treating multiple sclerosis.

N. Daren Writer (left) and Dr. Jack Burks.

The Rocky Mountain MS Center was founded in 1978 by Dr. Jack Burks at the University of Colorado and N. Daren Writer, after Writer was diagnosed with MS in 1974. At that time, Writer was told, “there was nothing anyone could do about MS,” and to “go home and put his affairs in order.” This was unacceptable to this exceptional man of action and business leader. He sought out a brilliant, young neurologist who was dedicated to finding the cause of MS and a cure for the disease. That led Writer to Dr. Burks, who believed something could be done for people living with MS. Together they created a single, comprehensive facility to treat people with MS and find the cause and a cure.

Dr. Burks was an MS neurologist, writer, lecturer, and researcher and was instrumental in developing treatment to address all aspects of the disease and to care comprehensively for MS patients.  He served as chief medical consultant for the Multiple Sclerosis Association of America (MSAA) for nearly 25 years, retiring in 2019.

Our friends at MSAA shared that Dr. Burks traveled internationally to educate other physicians about the disease and its treatments, advised clinical trials, published peer-reviewed articles and medical textbooks, and treated patients through his own MS practice.

“Dr. Burks recognized the importance of tissue bank development, clinical care and basic science research, and the formation of a strong relationship with a dedicated patient advocacy organization,” says Rocky Mountain MS Center’s Medical Director Dr. John Corboy.  “All of these elements are core to our MS Center today, in great part due to his efforts.”

So many have benefitted from Dr. Burks’ decades of hard work, and we are grateful to have the opportunity to continue expanding his legacy. Our thoughts and deepest sympathies are with Dr. Burks’ family and friends.

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