It is with a heavy heart that I share with you news of the untimely passing of Dale Bieber, MD, MS. Our hearts go out to Carla, his family, and his close friends. We mourn with them in this sudden and tragic loss.
A clinical professor in the Division of General Internal Medicine, Dale had a globe-spanning life and career with an abiding dedication to patients of all ages and a belief in the power of forming tangible connections with them. The son of missionaries, Dale understood from an early age the need to commit to a cause greater than himself. After completing his MS in Physiology and an MD at Penn State, he practiced medicine for a few years in Grantwood, Pennsylvania. He returned to the Nigeria of his youth to become an assistant professor of Pediatrics, serving as acting department chair for a year.
“My dream was to be a small-town country doc,” he said in an interview with UI Health Care some years ago. And that is just what he did for twenty years, building relationships and serving as a foundational support for his community in Hershey, Pennsylvania. Eventually family and career led him to the University of North Carolina where he resumed educating future doctors as an associate program director for their medicine and pediatrics residency. In 2007 a job opportunity for his wife, Carla Nester, MD, MSA, in pediatric nephrology at Iowa was our opportunity as well. For nearly fifteen years, Dale practiced with us as a general internist, becoming one of our most sought-after providers at Iowa River Landing. He had a profound impact on generations of medical students and residents here at Iowa. As director of the ambulatory core elective for our residents and a long-running elective for medical students, Dale’s talents as an educator were legendary and represented the best of our Department. In 2011, he received the Collegiate Teaching Award, one of our highest honors for educators.
Dale’s interest was in people, how to have a lasting and beneficial impact on every person he met. Everyone who knew him will feel the sting of his absence. His good humor, the deep kindness and attention he showed each person equally, and even his rich singing voice, which he was known to break out on special occasions for our benefit—all of these qualities and so much more will be deeply missed.
Details on a remembrance in his honor will be forthcoming.