Celebrating David Mutch, MD : Pioneering Excellence and Establishing Legacy in Gynecologic Oncology 

David Mutch, MD, former chair of the FWC board of directors, recipient of the 2023-2024 SGO/FWC Service Award, and luminary in gynecologic oncology, has left an indelible mark in the field through his passion for and commitment to patient care, mentorship, and groundbreaking research. Reflecting on his journey, Dr. Mutch traces the evolution of his career, from its humble beginnings to his pivotal role in shaping the future of gynecologic oncology. 

Growing up in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, Dr. Mutch was surrounded by medicine; his father, an obstetrician gynecologist, instilled in him a passion for health care from an early age. Initially drawn to maternal-fetal medicine during his residency, Dr. Mutch’s trajectory took a decisive turn towards surgery and the care of critically ill patients. Inspired by the exemplary mentorship at Washington University in St. Louis (Wash U) where he completed his training, Dr. Mutch found his calling in gynecologic oncology. 

Upon completing his fellowship at Duke University, Dr. Mutch returned to Wash U. Reflecting on his contributions, Dr. Mutch takes immense pride in the establishment of a robust fellowship program at Wash U. Under his guidance, the program has flourished, producing a cadre of outstanding physicians who continue to advance the field of gynecologic oncology. “Of the fifty fellows we have, two thirds of them are in academic medicine and all of them are outstanding physicians and contribute to the care of women with gynecologic cancers. I am probably most proud of this,” he shared. With a 100% board pass rate and a significant presence in academic medicine, the impact of Dr. Mutch’s mentorship reverberates across the nation. 

Looking toward the future, Dr. Mutch sees the field of gynecologic oncology poised at the threshold of a new era: molecular medicine. The burgeoning understanding of the molecular underpinnings of gynecologic cancers promises to revolutionize treatment paradigms. He envisions a future where targeted therapies, guided by molecular insights, offer tailored and efficacious treatments for patients. “As we learn more and more about what causes our diseases from a molecular standpoint, we can employ various therapies and develop treatments or drugs that can target those abnormalities,” he explained. With knowledge advancing at an exponential rate, he remains optimistic about the possibilities that lie ahead. 

Though Dr. Mutch embarks on a well-deserved retirement, his passion for medicine remains. Serving as principal investigator on a specialized research grant, he continues to contribute to the advancement of knowledge in the field. Dr. Mutch is committed to nurturing the next generation of physicians, guiding them as they navigate their early career endeavors. In his personal life, he looks forward to spending quality time with family and embracing new experiences with his children who share his love of adventure.  

In the history of gynecologic oncology, Dr. David Mutch represents excellence as a clinician, mentor, and visionary whose contributions have transformed the landscape of patient care and research. As he bids farewell to clinical practice, Dr. Mutch leaves behind a legacy that will continue to inspire and guide generations of physicians to come.