Alumna Service Award

Dr. Victoria Saracco Brander ‘80 was born and raised in Oak Park, with her sister Mary (Trinity Class of 1981) and brother, Bill. Her parents, Vic and Hilde, were born of immigrant Italian parents and were the first in their families to attend college. Vicky graduated from Trinity in 1980 as Valedictorian. She was admitted to and graduated from the Six-Year Honors Program in Medical Education at Northwestern University.

Dr. Brander serves as Associate Professor of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (PM&R) at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine and Adjunct Faculty in Northwestern’s Institute for Public Health and Medicine, Global Health Initiative. A board-certified PM&R Specialist, Dr. Brander is an attending physician at Northwestern Memorial Hospital and NorthShore University Health System.

Dr. Brander has held leadership roles in a variety of national organizations including serving as President of the Illinois State Society of PM&R and as an advisor to various academic organizations, including the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control. She was awarded the prestigious Knee Society for research in joint replacement outcomes.

Dr. Brander co-founded and directs Operation Walk Chicago, a medical not-for-profit organization that performs free hip and knee replacement surgeries for underserved patients throughout the world. In recognition of her humanitarian service, Dr. Brander was presented with the “Unsung Heroes of Compassion” award by His Holiness The Dalai Lama.

Dr Brander and her husband Bill (who is a family physician) have three children Caroline: Class of 2008, who graduated from the University of Chicago and is now in her second year of medical school at Rush Medical College, Billy is in his senior year at Purdue and Andrew is a senior at Fenwick.