April 28, 2022

The Passing of Dr. Arnie Widen

This month, we lost a beloved member of our community, Dr. Arnie Widen (1929-2022). Dr. Widen was not only a member of our Board (and former President), but he served as a volunteer physician in the clinic for many years, both seeing his own panel of patients and supervising Northwestern Medicine residents. Dr. Widen was beloved by all at CommunityHealth, evidenced by the many times we sought to honor him. He was the 2002 recipient of our Visionary Award, 2011 recipient of the Serafino Garella Award, and the namesake of the Arnold L. Widen Legacy Volunteer Award first presented in 2017.


Dr. Serafino Garella presenting Dr. Arnie Widen with the Serafino Award in 2011


Dr. Widen was an instrumental force behind making CommunityHealth who we are today. Over his 18 years of volunteer service, he became known for his ‘how can I help?’ attitude. This is the spirit that he helped to build into everything we are at CommunityHealth. As a supervisor of medical residents from Northwestern University, he made a huge impact on the lives of both patients and providers alike.


Outside of CommunityHealth, Dr. Widen’s contributions to the health care sector and the city of Chicago were numerous. Among other honors, he received the Russe Award as recognition for Exemplary Compassion in Health Care, and indeed every area of his life was characterized by the kindness he shared with the world. If you would like to send flowers or other well wishes to the family, details are included at this link.


Dr. Widen will be truly missed. His spirit of service and lifelong commitment that health care is a fundamental human right will continue to live on through our work at CommunityHealth.