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In Memoriam Exhibit: Dr. Charles A. McCallum

This exhibit celebrates the supporters of the UAB Libraries Historical Collections. It also shows users how to navigate the In Memoriam digital collection.

McCallum Donations

Organization of nursing: an account of the Liverpool Nurses' Training School, its foundation, progress, and operation in hospital, district, and private nursing (1865)

This work is about the creation of the Liverpool Royal Infirmary Training School and Home for Nurses in 1865. It includes an introduction by Florence Nightingale who played an essential role in the formulation of the school, and for whom the work is dedicated. This book was donated to Reynolds-Finley Historical Library by Dr. Charles A. McCallum, the third president of UAB, and a physician who shared in Nightingale’s vision for better education and medical care for all.

Dr. Charles A. McCallum on getting the Reynolds collection to UAB

Charles A. McCallum, DMD, MD

Charles Alexander “Scotty” McCallum, Jr., was born in 1925 in North Adams, Massachusetts, and died January 16, 2021, at his home in Vestavia Hills.  He was 95 years old. McCallum attended Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, until he joined the U.S. Navy during World War II.  After his naval service, McCallum enrolled in the Tufts College Dental School and received his DMD in 1951.  That year he came to Birmingham as an oral surgery intern; he remained at UAB for the rest of his professional life. 

In 1957 he earned the MD from the Medical College of Alabama (now known as the UAB medical school), and he completed an oral surgery residency at University Hospital.  He became a member of the university faculty in 1956 as an instructor and was appointed a full professor in 1959.  In 1958 he was appointed chair of the Department of Oral Surgery, and in 1962 he became the second dean of the School of Dentistry, succeeding his mentor Dr. Joseph F. Volker, Jr.  McCallum was the UAB vice president for Health Affairs and director of the university medical center from 1977 until 1987 when he was named as the third president of UAB.  McCallum served as president until his retirement in 1993.  Even in retirement, he continued to teach at UAB and he maintained his professional practice, although he stopped accepting new patients in the mid-1990s.


Following retirement from his academic career, in 2000 McCallum ran for the office of mayor of the City of Vestavia Hills, where he and his family had long resided.  McCallum served two terms as mayor.  After his second retirement, in 2010 the city re-dedicated one of its parks as McCallum Park in his honor.

At UAB, the McCallum Basic Health Sciences Building is named in his honor and in 2006 a life-size statue of McCallum was formally dedicated in the UAB Mini Park.  McCallum was also inducted into the UAB Athletics Hall of Fame for his long devotion to Blazer athletics and for establishing a Division III football team during his tenure as UAB president.  The dental school has the McCallum Endowed Chair of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. 


McCallum was the recipient of many honors during his long career, including the 1972 UAB Distinguished Faculty Lecturer, 1975 Alabama Academy of Honor, the 1999 Alabama Health Hall of Fame, 2006 American Dental Association Distinguished Service Award, and the 2018 Lifetime Achievement Award by the Vulcan Park and Museum.  He held many honorary degrees, including those awarded by UAB, Tufts University, Georgetown University, the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, and Chulalongkorn University (Thailand).  Among his many affiliated professional and learned societies, he served as the president of the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, the president of the American Association of Dental Schools, the chair of the Association of Academic Health Centers, and the chair of the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations.  McCallum was also the President and CEO of the Alabama Symphony Association and the chair of the Birmingham Metropolitan Development Board.  He was a member of the board of trustees/directors for a wide range of entities, including Bread & Roses Hospitality House for Women, Operation New Birmingham, Bryant-Jordan Scholar Athlete Foundation, Birmingham Council of Boy Scouts of America, Birmingham Festival of Arts Association, and the University Way-Community Chest of Central Alabama.  He held membership in numerous professional societies, including the Alabama Dental Association, American Dental Association, American Medical Association, Association of American Medical Colleges, International Association of Oral Surgeons, and the Medical Association of the State of Alabama.


Dr. McCallum was preceded in death by his parents, Charlie and Mabel, one brother, one sister, and by his wife, Alabama native Alice Lasseter, a graduate of the hospital-based nursing school at University Hospital.  He was survived by four sons, eight grandchildren, and three great-grandsons.

Sterne Library's Scotty Catalog

Sterne Library Director Jerry W. Stephens shows Charles A. McCallum the new "Scotty" computer terminal at Sterne Library.

When the Mervyn H. Sterne Library acquired a new computerized cataloging system in 1994, the system was named “Scotty” in honor of the long-time library supporter and beloved former university president who had helped fund the acquisition of the system.

Historical Collections Supporter


 Charles A. McCallum looks at a book in his office.

Dr. McCallum was a long-time member of the steering committee of the Reynolds-Finley Associates and was a member of the UAB Archives Advisory Committee.  During his tenure as president, McCallum also formally established the university’s archives as an official campus office.

Archives of the Southern Surgical Association

Dr. Charles A. McCallum was a supporter of the Southern Surgical Association and helped facilitate the naming of UAB's Lister Hill Library as the official archival repository of the association during his presidency at UAB. This process was completed in 1987 upon his proposal to the Board of Trustees of the university.

Click here to view the digital collection of the Southern Surgical Association's annual transactions from 1888-1996.

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