Remembering Dr. James Champoux

May 22, 2019

Remembering Dr. James Champoux

The Honors community lost a wonderful teacher, leader and friend last Monday with the passing of Dr. James Champoux. One week after he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer he died at the age of 76.

A longtime professor and former chair of the UW School of Medicine Department of Microbiology, Dr. Champoux inspired students to love what they studied.

Here’s a recent student comment on his teaching: “Without a doubt, [Dr. Champoux is] one of the best professors I have ever had. He cares so much about the information he is presenting and has (according to him) been teaching this content for 44 years. His expertise clearly shows! Very reasonable expectations in regards to exams and assignments. His excitement for viruses is very contagious.”

Champoux was among the first group of UW students to join the University of Washington Honors Program at its inception in 1961, while he was earning his bachelor’s degree in chemistry. His affection for Honors continued long after graduation and he served as a member of the Honors Advisory Board under two program directors, retiring in July of 2018.

Our colleague Paul Ramsey, Dean of the UW School of Medicine, wrote this touching account of Dr. Champoux’s many awards and appointments.

We join Dr. Champoux’s family, friends and former students and colleagues in gratitude for the time we were able to spend with this great person.