Greg McDonald, DO '89, dean, was recently accepted to the Vidocq Society which aims
to solve cold cases.
This summer, Gregory McDonald, DO ’89, dean, school of health sciences and chair of the forensic medicine program at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine was named to the internationally-renowned
Vidocq Society. The Vidocq Society brings together forensic experts from all over
the world to assist law enforcement agencies with cases that have gone unsolved, also
known as cold cases. At the heart of the Society is the belief that even the most
experienced investigator can benefit from another professional’s opinion and that
each member brings with them a wealth of life experience that may serve to be helpful
in a cold case.
In addition to his role at PCOM, Dr. McDonald serves as the chief-deputy coroner for
Montgomery County and has completed more than 8,000 autopsies. Like other members
of the Society, Dr. McDonald hopes to gain insight from, and share his personal insight
with, the Society. “We all have cold cases, cases that we could never quite solve,”
shared Dr. McDonald of his experience working in forensic investigation. “These cases
are like an itch you can’t scratch, but if I can help someone else solve their cold
case and scratch that itch, I will. I may look at something and based on my life experience
see something that a previous investigator may not have noticed.”
The Society was named for Eugène François Vidocq (1775-1857), a French detective who
is considered by many to be the first modern detective. Founded in Philadelphia in
1990, the Society has grown from a regional organization to one that is now internationally
recognized by governing bodies of law enforcement. The U.S. Department of Justice’s
National Institute of Justice named the Vidocq Society as a source in a recent publication
titled “National Best Practices for Implementing and Sustaining a Cold Case Investigation
To be accepted into the society, Dr. McDonald was required to submit his curriculum
vitae, explain in writing why he should be a part of the society and gain the support
and recommendation of two existing fellows of the Society. Today, the Society exists
of 82 core members, as well as countless “Special members.”
About Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine
Founded in 1899, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) has trained thousands
of highly competent, caring physicians, health practitioners and behavioral scientists
who practice a “whole person” approach to care—treating people, not just symptoms.
PCOM operates three campuses (PCOM, PCOM Georgia and PCOM South Georgia) and offers doctoral degrees in clinical psychology, educational psychology, osteopathic
medicine, pharmacy, physical therapy and school psychology, and graduate degrees in
applied behavior analysis, applied positive psychology, biomedical sciences, forensic
medicine, medical laboratory science, mental health counseling, non profit leadership
and population health management, organizational development and leadership, physician
assistant studies, school psychology, and public health management and administration.
PCOM students learn the importance of health promotion, research, education and service
to the community. Through its community-based Healthcare Centers, PCOM provides care
to medically underserved populations. For more information, visit pcom.edu or call 215-871-6100.
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