Mary Tobin, MD

Associate Professor
Department of Immunology/Microbiology, Rush Medical College
Role: Clinician, Researcher, Faculty, Director - Division of Allergy/Immunology
Joined Rush as a student, resident and fellow from 1973-1983; Joined as faculty in July 1999.


I am the first female doctor in a family of doctors. My grandfather, uncles and father all went to Rush when it was part of the University of Chicago. I elected to come to Rush because it was new and looking for better ways to care for patients. Initially, the students had both a large role in developing the curriculum and close relationships with the faculty because the classes were small. I did my Internal Medicine residency at Rush and my AI fellowship here as well before joining the faculty at Loyola. I started the first AI program there. Sixteen years later, I returned to Rush when my GI colleagues, Dr. Keshavarzian and Dr. DeMeo moved here to continue their research. I also wanted to teach in an AI fellowship program.

What inspired you to get into your field?

I was initially interested in women with autoimmune diseases, like Lupus. However, during my Internal Medicine training, I met Alan Luskin, MD, who was the first AI director. I realized that I could take care of both adults and children with allergic and immunologic disease, so I entered the new AI fellowship at Rush.

What excited you about your work at Rush?

I really loved the collegiality of working at Rush. I love working with teams of practitioners with different skill sets in order to help patients.

What is your opinion of mentoring and sponsorship? Please comment about your experiences.

I think it is essential. I am from an era where we did not have hardly any mentoring or sponsorship, so I am thrilled that the younger faculty will have this type of support.

Do you have tips or advice you would recommend for someone looking to enter your field of work?

It is a great field with a bright future because there are so many immunotherapies. It also allows you to work with both adults and children.

What are your hobbies? How do you like to spend your free time?

I like to travel, but walking and reading are what I get to do most often.