(Vienna, 29 March 2010) On Friday, 26 March 2010, Rector Wolfgang Schütz conferred the title Honorary Citizen to the two Emeritus Professors Rainer Kotz and Ernst Kubista on behalf of the Medical University of Vienna. For many years the two professors were successfully involved in the further development and positioning of MedUni Vienna in their capacity as members of the Senate.
Until his retirement last autumn, Rainer Kotz, 69, headed the Department of Orthopaedics with excellent success and turned it into one of the most successful clinics worldwide in terms of research output and new treatment methods. As well as his function as the Head of Department, Kotz held a large number of important functions within MedUni Vienna. In 2003, for example, being a member of the founding convention of MedUni Vienna, like his colleague Ernst Kubista he played a key role in the change management process when the Medical Faculty of Vienna University was transformed into MedUni Vienna. A permanent member of the Senate since 2004, he headed many working groups (such as on the amendment to the 2002 University Act) and appointment committees. Rainer Kotz thanked his staff and assured that he would also make his expert knowledge on university policy issues available to MedUni Vienna in future.
Ernst Kubista, 65, is one of Austria's leading breast cancer specialists and, until his retirement, headed this country's only Division of Special Gynaecology. He developed this division into a major reference centre for breast and ovarian cancer. Kubista also played a pivotal role in the foundation of the Centre of Breast Health at MedUni Vienna. Like Kotz, Kubista was also a member of MedUni Vienna's founding convention. A member of the Senate from the early days, he was actively involved in the Senate commission on the new construction of the research building as well as in a large number of working groups (e.g. access to higher education institutions). In his laudatory speech, Rector Wolfgang Schütz thanked Kubista in particular for his pioneering work in senology in Austria. In his acceptance speech, Kubista above all addressed his family and colleagues.
Prof. Kubista and Prof. Kotz jointly thanked Univ. Prof. Dr. Rudolf Valenta for his initiative to help them gain honorary citizenship.