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In Memoriam: James Loucks, M.D., Former President of Crozer-Chester Medical Center

James H. Loucks, M.D., 82, of Haddonfield, a former President of Crozer-Chester Medical Center who was instrumental in developing the medical center’s burn treatment center, died recently.

During his 18 years at Crozer, Dr. Loucks transformed the medical center into a nationally recognized hospital with some of the latest technology. Dr. Loucks was hired as director of medical education in 1967, but less than a year later he was asked to fill in as administrator. The hospital board eventually persuaded him to take the job permanently, and the title was later changed to president.

One of his most lauded accomplishments was the establishment of the Burn Treatment Center in 1973, now called the Nathan Speare Regional Burn Treatment Center. It was the first such center in the region and one of only several around the country.

“One of the most significant contributions Dr. Loucks made during his tenure as administrator of Crozer was the development of medical subspecialties, including Nephrology, Oncology and Cardiology that began to transform Crozer from a community hospital to the major suburban teaching hospital it is today. Additionally, his tenure will be noted for the development of the Nathan Speare Regional Burn Treatment Center,” says Joan K. Richards, president and chief executive officer of Crozer-Keystone Health System.

As soon as Dr. Loucks stepped into his role at Crozer, he started moving forward. He hired more administrative staff while balancing a construction project. In 1971, the northwest wing of the hospital was dedicated, creating a new X-ray department, a pediatric and cardiac unit, modern inpatient rooms, and an outpatient clinic.

The medical center became the first general hospital in the nation in the 1970s to install noninvasive fetal-monitoring equipment.

But the one change he was most proud of, according to his wife, Dolores, was installing a solar-energy system in 1981, before being environmentally friendly was trendy. The system supplied large quantities of hot water for the burn center, regional laundry, and domestic water supply.

Dr. Loucks was born in Tarentum, Allegheny County, and raised mostly in Ohio before his parents moved to Longport, Atlantic County, during his last year of high school. He graduated from Atlantic City High School in 1948.

After graduating from Muhlenberg College in 1952, Dr. Loucks studied medicine at Jefferson Medical College, where he earned his medical degree in 1956. Dr. Loucks served four years in the Navy Medical Corps, retiring in 1961 as a medical officer of the Naval Air Material Center in Philadelphia with the rank of lieutenant.

After completing his residency in internal medicine at Jefferson Medical College in 1963, Dr. Loucks went to work as director of Medical Education at St. Agnes Hospital in Philadelphia.

Besides his wife, Dr. Loucks is survived by a son, James M.; a daughter, Linda L. Roberts; seven grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren. A daughter, Kim, died in 1995.

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