Sydney C Butts
Chief of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
SUNY Downstate Medical Center
Sydney C. Butts, M.D., is one of a set of triplets. Born and raised in Queens, N.Y., Sydney Butts earned a bachelor’s degree in the history of science and history of medicine from Yale and graduated, cum laude, from the Yale University Medical School in 1998. She chose to specialize in otolaryngology (head, neck, ear, nose and throat surgery) and completed her residency training at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine/Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx in 2003, at the end of which she received the Chief Resident of the Year award. “This was a real honor because it was bestowed by my co-residents and recognized dedication to teaching and patient care,” says Dr. Butts.
She spent an additional year in fellowship training in facial plastic and reconstructive surgery at the State University of New York Upstate Medical Center in Syracuse. Since August 2009, she has served as chief of facial plastic and reconstructive surgery at the SUNY Downstate Medical Center/University Hospital of Brooklyn, where she is also assistant professor of otolaryngology.
In addition to the impact her parents have had on her personal and professional growth, Butts credits her high school teachers with “creating an environment where excellence was encouraged and for caring about me as a person.” She also acknowledges the role her medical school professors and classmates played in her accomplishments. Her work in reconstructive surgery of children with cleft lip and palate and other congenital craniofacial disorders allowed her to travel with a team of surgeons to Vietnam to operate on patients with these anomalies. Teaching and mentoring, which she describes as “a common theme in my work and service,” enhances her sense of professional fulfillment.
Favorite food: Peking duck
Favorite author: Richard Wright
Favorite charities: PBS, The Schomburg Library