Greg Alexander died on 20 February 2007 at the age of 56. Greg will be remembered for his many contributions to the field of perinatal epidemiology. His work on fetal growth curves for singletons, twins, and triplets represents one of the most highly-cited references in the field. Similarly, his R-Gindex (revised graduated index) for quantifying prenatal care is widely used to estimate the adequacy of prenatal care, especially among high-risk mothers.
Greg worked in the service of public health. From 1971 to 1975, he served at the Charleston County Health Department in South Carolina. Subsequently, he became a research biostatistician at the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (1976–1979), during which time he obtained a Masters degree in Public Health from the University of South Carolina. He was awarded a Doctor of Science degree from the School of Public Health at John Hopkins University in 1989. After teaching at Hopkins for a few years, he left to become the Chair of Maternal and Child Health (MCH) at the University of Minnesota (1990–1995), and subsequently Chair of the MCH Department at the University of Alabama in Birmingham (1995–2005). Greg became Professor of Pediatrics and Public Health at the University of South Florida in 2005.
Within the relatively short span of his professional career, Greg received more than a dozen national awards recognizing excellence in research, teaching and service. More important, he left a legacy by mentoring a new crop of perinatal epidemiologists to uphold his principles and beliefs—seeking evidence rather than relying on blindfolded belief, being passionate about one's work, teaching the next generation, and treating students with dignity. If you do not treat your students respectfully, he said, “you will harm them, harm yourself, and harm the spirit of good science.” We have lost a wise colleague, an outstanding scholar, a creative mind and a wonderful mentor.
Greg maintained an admirable balance of work with leisure and family life. He is survived by his wife, Donna, and 2 daughters, Kerry and Morgan.