Written by: Daniel Holmes, MD, FRCPC

Dr. Trotter is retiring from the Department of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine, UBC

Martin J. Trotter BSc, MD, PhD, FRCPC

Dr. Martin Trotter was born in Ottawa, grew up in the Dunbar neighbourhood in Vancouver, and attended Lord Byng High School. He received most of his post-secondary education at the University of British Columbia. He obtained his BSc in Honours Physiology in 1981, his MD in 1985, and then did his rotating internship at St. Paul’s Hospital. He went on to complete his PhD in Experimental Pathology in 1990 at the BC Cancer Research Centre. Following his Anatomic Pathology Residency at UBC, Dr. Trotter received a McLaughlin Fellowship and trained in Dermatopathology for one year in London, U.K., at St. John's Institute of Dermatology under Dr. Neil Smith. Dr. Trotter is a Diplomate (Dermatopathology) of the Royal College of Pathologists (U.K.) and is a Fellow of the College of American Pathologists.

Dr. Trotter was a staff pathologist at Vancouver General Hospital (VGH) from 1994-2000 and was Assistant Professor at UBC. From 2000-2015, he worked as a pathologist at Calgary Laboratory Services and became a full Professor in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of Calgary.

Before relocating to Calgary in 2000, he was the Anatomic Pathology Division Head and Acting Laboratory Director at VGH. At Calgary Laboratory Services, he was Division Head, Anatomic Pathology and Cytopathology from 2002-2008. From 2004-2005, he was also acting Head, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine for the University of Calgary and acting Regional Clinical Department Head for the Calgary Health Region. He directed the Immunohistochemistry Laboratory in Calgary for 11 years. Dr. Trotter has been involved with the Canadian Association of Pathologists (CAP-ACP) since 2001 and was CAP-ACP President 2013-2015. After his tenure at Calgary Laboratory Services, Dr. Trotter joined St. Paul’s Hospital as the Head of Department—a position from which he retired on March 31, 2020. At St. Paul’s Dr. Trotter PHC Credentials Officer and Chair of the Medical Advisory Committee. He also served as the Secretary-Treasurer for the BC Association of Laboratory Physicians.

While all of these professional activities were deeply appreciated by PHC staff, there are other contributions that should not go unmentioned. With Dr. Janet Simons, Dr. Trotter helped PHC lab (finally) get a website up and running which includes medical bulletins, a test directory with specimen requirements, turnaround times and reference intervals. This has been incredibly useful to caregivers in PHC and elsewhere. He also established Friday morning coffee for the technical staff working with Dr. Karen Dallas to make this happen. He put a television in the hall that runs lab updates, which gives Pathology and Lab Medicine “a face” to the passer’s by—though we may change the background music, which has been a cover of Cyndi Lauper’s “All through the Night” for quite some time.

Dr. Trotter will be remembered as someone who has a kind heart and who forgives easily. He looks out for those who are struggling and helps get people on a path to career and personal success. He will be returning to his home in Calgary, Alberta with his wife, Theresa. We wish them many hiking adventures and photos looking down at turquoise glacial lakes. Thank you for your longstanding service to our profession and our patients.