In Memory of Prof John Harper (1950 - April 5, 2021)

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The ISPD mourns the death of Professor John Harper, who passed away suddenly on April 5, 2021. Professor Harper was a giant in our field and a mentor to hundreds of pediatric dermatologists. For many years he led the team at Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) in London. In 2001, John was awarded a personal chair and, in recognition of his contribution to Pediatric Dermatology, became the first Professor of Pediatric Dermatology in the UK at GOSH and the Institute of Child Health. 


He made landmark contributions to the literature and his work and networking were pivotal to the growth of the field of pediatric dermatology. He was instrumental in establishing and supporting many patients support groups in the UK and lectured across the globe as an acclaimed speaker.


John was the founder Secretary and Chairman of the British Society for Pediatric Dermatology from 1988 to 1991 and President of the European Society of Pediatric Dermatology from 1993 to 1996. A prolific author, he served as Associate Editor of the Journal “Pediatric Dermatology” (1993-98) and was a Referee for major journals. He is well known for Harper’s Textbook of Pediatric Dermatology, 4th Edition of which was last published in 2020. He has published more than 185 scientific papers in various peer reviewed journals.


In 2011, he received the International League of Dermatological Societies’ Certificate of Appreciation. He was greatly looking forward to being honored at the upcoming European Society for Pediatric Dermatology meeting with its inaugural Masters Award for Lifetime Achievement in Pediatric Dermatology, which will now be given posthumously. We will miss John dearly, but his impact will live on for generations to come. 


From the ISPD Board of Directors

Amy Paller, Christine Bodemer, Margarita Larralde, Arti Nanda, Gail Todd, and Mark Koh