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Several pictures of doctors who are featured on the Local Legends web site

MEET LOCAL LEGEND: Kim Templeton, M.D.

Picture of Kim Templeton
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Kim Templeton, M.D.

“The most rewarding part of my work is seeing patients diagnosed with really serious problems overcome their illnesses after surgery. Years later they are going to college, working and living normal lives.”


Dennis Moore



Medicine, music and sports have been important elements of Kim Templeton's life. In high school and college she loved science and was a talented pianist who played well enough to consider a career in music. And she excelled at tennis, for which she was named a Scholar Athlete by the Intercollegiate Tennis Coaches' Association in 1984 and which initially motivated her to consider a sports medicine career.

From sports medicine it was a logical jump to orthopaedics, where she has become a nationally known surgeon specializing in orthopaedic oncology, as well as a gifted teacher and mentor of medical students at the University of Kansas School of Medicine. She also lectures and advocates nationally about musculoskeletal health, especially for young women.

Templeton began her career with an orthopaedic residency at Chicago's Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Center, then accepted a Musculoskeletal Oncology Fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. In 1995, she came to the KU School of Medicine, where her commitment to excellence and orthopaedic education has opened the way to positions of leadership.

She is passionate about orthopaedic surgery: "I love to help somebody get a new lease on life! When you see a patient with a tough diagnosis and can turn it around, that's a great feeling."

Nominated as a Local Legend of Medicine by Rep. Dennis Moore (D-KS-3), Templeton received the Chancellor's Award for Outstanding Classroom Teaching in 2002 and a William T. Kemper Fellowship for Teaching Excellence in 2004. She is Director of the Orthopaedic Residency Education Program at the University of Kansas School of Medicine, holds the first Joy McCann Professorship for Women in Medicine and Science, and currently serves as president of the KU Medical Center's Women in Medicine and Science program.

Active in the American Orthopaedic Association, she is only the second female orthopaedic surgeon to be accepted into the AOA in its 116-year history. Also, she is president of the Ruth Jackson Orthopaedic Society (RJOS), a support and networking group for women orthopaedic surgeons, serving as the group's national spokesperson and advocate for women's musculoskeletal health.

With a fellowship from RJOS, she evaluated curricula at various medical schools to help determine women's musculoskeletal health issues and continues to help develop appropriate musculoskeletal testing material for medical students.

She has served on the National Board of Medical Examiners Step 2 committee and its musculoskeletal task force, and now is national chair of the public education committee for the U.S. Bone and Joint Decade, a global, multi-disciplinary initiative targeting the care of people with bone and joint disorders.

Widely published and the recipient of numerous honors, most recently she was selected as one of America's Top Physicians (2005), and tapped as a Fellow by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons Leadership Program (2005) and the Harvard-Macy Program for Leaders in Medical Education (2004).

Lauds a colleague, Dr. Vernon Tolo, "Kim has accomplished more to advance the role of women in orthopaedics than just about anyone else in the country."



Director, Musculoskeletal Oncology Service, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City


Twice Elected President, Kansas Orthopaedic Society


Appointed Director, Residency Education Program, University of Kansas Medical Center


Elected President, Women in Medicine & Science, University of Kansas School of Medicine


Appointed Associate Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of Kansas Medical Center


Elected President, Ruth Jackson Orthopaedic Society




University of Missouri School of Medicine, Columbia, MO



Sub Specialty

Musculoskeletal Oncology