Darwin Palmer, MD

Internal Medicine


Dr. Darwin L. Palmer was born in Long Beach, CA, and attended Oberlin College in Ohio, graduating in 1953. After college, Dr. Palmer briefly considered a career in psychology, completing an MA at Columbia University in experimental psychology in 1954. He was drafted into the United States Army during the Korean war. He served most his service at Fort Ord, CA, where he helped the Army to conduct psychological studies to understand characteristics of successful soldiers.

After discharge from the Army, Dr. Palmer returned to the pursuit of his lifelong dream of becoming a physician. He obtained an MD at the NYU School of Medicine. Dr. Palmer then completed a Medical Internship (1961), Residency (1964), and NIH Postdoctoral Fellowship in Infectious Disease (1966), all at the University of Colorado Medical Center.

After completing medical training, Dr. Palmer moved to Albuquerque, NM. He became a Professor at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine and a physician at the Veterans Administration Medical Center where he served for many years as Chief of Infectious Disease. Dr. Palmer published numerous scientific articles. Among other things, he was an international expert on the plague, writing the chapter on the plague in Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine.

Dr. Palmer was elected as the Governor for the NM chapter of the American College of Physicians (1987-91), where he worked to advance goals of universal healthcare at a national level. He also served on a panel advising NM Governor Bill Richardson on health policy issues. After retiring, Dr. Palmer spent two years in Zimbabwe teaching medicine and investigating drug resistant tuberculosis on a Fulbright grant.