Barry McNamara  |   Published January 23, 2021

It’s No Wonder He Gives

Dr. Robert Litchfield ’71 supports his alma mater for the way it influenced his life.

MONMOUTH, Ill. – One of Dr. Robert Litchfield’s most cherished memories of his time as a Monmouth College student came when he was asked to drive a young performer to campus after picking him up at the Galesburg airport.

DR. ROBERT LITCHFIELD: 1971 graduate, who once chauffeured Stevie Wonder, traces the beginning of... DR. ROBERT LITCHFIELD: 1971 graduate, who once chauffeured Stevie Wonder, traces the beginning of his professional success to his time at Monmouth College.That artist, Stevie Wonder, was in the early stages of a music career that has spanned more than half a century.

Perhaps Wonder’s best song to describe how Litchfield feels today about his alma mater is “From the Bottom of My Heart.” A 1971 graduate, Litchfield credits Monmouth for providing the education, experiences, maturity and confidence that carried him through a successful career as a cardiologist in the Midwest.

“So many people influenced my life, and that began at Monmouth,” said Litchfield, who recently made a gift of stock to support a newly created unrestricted endowed scholarship at the College.

“I hope more students have experiences like I did. I want Monmouth to continue for generations to come.” Dr. Robert Litchfield

In addition to serving as Wonder’s temporary chauffeur, Litchfield was exposed to a variety of other opportunities and campus activities while a Monmouth student – student government, Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity and serving as the first student dorm director. He also recalled attending convocations and hearing exceptional speakers, including legendary criminal defense attorney F. Lee Bailey.

“Those experiences all helped me mature and develop my character and personality,” he said. “I hope more students have experiences like I did. I want Monmouth to continue for generations to come.”

Litchfield’s relationship with Monmouth began with his first visit to campus. He said the personal attention then-director of admissions Glen Rankin offered him and his mother during his tour of campus made Monmouth stand out from the other colleges he was considering.

“I liked the look and feel of Monmouth and decided to attend,” he said. “It just felt right.”

“I knew everybody, and the level of education was very good. It prepared me well for medical school and gave me the confidence I needed.” Dr. Robert Litchfield

As a Monmouth student, Litchfield was influenced by professors that included Dick Griffiths in music and science faculty Milt Bowman, John Ketterer and Dave Dunham.

“I made a lot of friends – guys like Ted Hartridge, William Daniel, Tom Bathrick and (future Monmouth mayor) Pat McManus,” said Litchfield. “I knew everybody, and the level of education was very good. It prepared me well for medical school and gave me the confidence I needed.”

After graduating from Monmouth, Litchfield attended the Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine (later renamed Midwestern University). He completed his internship and residency at Chicago Osteopathic hospitals, serving as chief resident. He completed his cardiology fellowship at the University of Iowa, which is one of the top cardiology programs in the country. While there, the faculty named him chief cardiology fellow.

Litchfield also served as associate dean of graduate and continuing medical education at the Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Litchfield is board-certified in cardiology, internal medicine and nuclear cardiology and is a fellow of the American College of Cardiology and the American College of Osteopathic Internists.

He practiced cardiology for 40 years with Cardiospecialists Group. After retiring from that position, he worked as a consultant for Community Hospital in Munster, Indiana, for three years. Now retired, Litchfield lives in Buchanan, Michigan, with his wife, Mary.

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