David Naylor was born in Woodstock Ontario and, following studies in Arts and Science, graduated with honors in Medicine at the University of Toronto in 1978. A Rhodes Scholarship took him to Hertford College (Oxford) where studies in the Faculty of Social and Administrative Studies earned him a PhD in the Faculty of Social and Administrative Studies. From 1983 to 1986 he undertook specialty training in Internal Medicine in London, Ontario leading to Certification and Fellowship in the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. He then held Medical Research Council Fellowship and Senior Scientistship awards in General Medicine and Clinical Epidemiology in Toronto. In 1988, Dr, Naylor was appointed to the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Toronto and rose rapidly through the ranks to achieve full professorship in 1996.
Over the ensuing nine years, in addition to his research and teaching responsibilities, he served on the clinical staff of the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and assumed senior administrative roles as Director, Clinical Epidemiology Unit, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre; founder and Chief Executive Officer, Institute of Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES); and Dean, Faculty of Medicine and Vice-Provost, University of Toronto. In 2005, Dr. Naylor was appointed President of the University of Toronto.
Dr. Naylor has been a highly active and productive researcher and highly regarded mentor and supervisor to students and postgraduate fellows. He has made a wide range of outstanding contributions to our understanding of health systems and in particular to outcomes- based evaluation of clinical medicine. He has brought intellectual rigor to marshalling the evidentiary base for designing effective clinical strategies. He has served on the editorial boards of prestigious national and international journals and on a variety of high level local, provincial, national and international committees; notably as Chair of the National Committee on SARS and Public Health which led to the establishment of the Public Health Agency of Canada. He has been an eclectic and prolific author of influential research papers, editorials, technical reports, book chapters and pamphlets.
The influence of Dr. Naylor's work is reflected in the many honours he has received from local, provincial, national and international bodies exemplified by his appointment as an Officer of the Order of Canada; election as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences and as a Foreign Associate Member, US Institute of Medicine; and by the distinctions bestowed on him by the Canadian Public Health Association, the Canadian Health Services Research Foundation, the Royal Australasian College of Physicians, the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, the Medical Research Council of Canada, and the Canadian Cardiovascular Society.
-citation delivered by mentor, Dr. Arnold Naimark