David S. Alberts, MD

Class Year




Posted on: August 10, 2023

Dr. David Samuel Alberts passed away on July 29, 2023, after a courageous battle with Parkinson’s Disease. David Samuel Alberts was born December 30, 1939, in Milwaukee, WI.

He was the youngest child of the late Ben and Esther Alberts and sibling of Chip (Eugene) Alberts and Bunny (Roberta) Alberts Fried. In 1958 he graduated from Shorewood High where he was the editor of the school’s student newspaper and captain of the swim team. In 1958 he entered Trinity College in Hartford Connecticut as pre-medical student on a full scholarship and graduated in 1962 with Phi Beta Kappa honors. He then received a full scholarship to the University of Virginia Medical School.

While at Trinity he met the love of his life, Heather Axelrod Alberts, a student from Connecticut College. Heather and David were married on June 16, 1963. They began to build a beautiful life together and had two children, Timothy, and Sabrina (Plattner).

David Graduated with honors and distinction from UVA Medical School in 1966 and went on to pursue a career in oncology. Clinically, Dr. Alberts pioneered new treatments for advanced ovarian cancers. Alberts authored or co-authored over 550 peer reviewed publications and 100 book chapters and served as editor of nine books. Dr. Alberts conducted his internal medicine residency at the University of Minnesota and then served on the faculty of the University of California, San Francisco, for five years and obtained Board certification in Medicine and Medical Oncology in 1973. He joined the UArizona College of Medicine in 1975 as a professor, where he has served for over 48 years and served as the UArizona Cancer Center Director from 2005 to 2013. Dr. Alberts was a Regents Professor of Medicine, Pharmacology, Nutritional Science, and Public Health at the UArizona College of Medicine.

Dr. Alberts retired from full time work in 2017; however, that could not keep him away from his passion of curing women’s cancers. He continued to work part time at UACC. While Dr. Alberts will be remembered for his dedication to cancer research and development of new oncology drugs and treatments, his biggest impact will be on the lives he touched and saved as an outstanding physician. Dave was always there for his patients at any time of the day or night. His compassion, commitment and overall care for his patients was unmatched. He will be remembered by his patients and their families forever.

David’s life dedication was not only to his career but also to his loving family. He was an especially proud grandfather to Samuel, Sydney and Tate Alberts and Sophie and Emma Plattner. He had a great sense of humor and passion for sports, especially the UArizona basketball and football teams, where he was a season ticket holder for 48 years. David religiously read the Greg Hansen column with his son. David is survived by his wife and best friend Heather Axelrod Alberts, sister Bunny Fried (The late John Fried), brother Chip Alberts, his children Tim (Angelle) Alberts and Sabrina (Danny) Plattner, honoree daughter Kaja Lewinn, grandchildren Samuel, Sydney and Tate Alberts and Sophie and Emma Plattner, many loved sister/brother-in laws, nieces, nephews, and cousins.