Archive for Friday, February 22, 2013

Riordan thinks doctor’s perspective, problem solving skills would be asset to City Commission

February 22, 2013


The simple answer to why Terry Riordan chose a career as a pediatrician, as opposed to some other more glamorous medical specialty, is that he likes kids.

As a father of six, he'd better.

But there’s another answer that is a bit more telling.

“The other thing is adults don’t always tell me the truth,” Riordan said. “Kids almost always tell me the truth.”

Riordan is one of 11 candidates seeking a seat on the Lawrence City Commission.

Terry Riordan

Address: 1613 Tennessee Street

Age: 61

Profession: Physician

Education: Undergraduate degree in biology from Rockhurst College, Kansas City; medical degree from Kansas University; medical residency at Letterman Army Medical Center, San Francisco

Family: Wife, Elaine; six children

He is the first medical doctor in recent memory to seek a seat on the commission, and Riordan said he thinks it would be a good prescription for the community.

“Every day as a physician I’m helping people, and that is what this job as a city commissioner should be about too,” Riordan said.

A caring place

Riordan, 61, is a partner in Lawrence’s Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine Group. But before he came to Lawrence in 1983 to join the practice, he was an Army doctor looking for a new home upon his discharge.

He and his wife have a daughter with a mild mental handicap who would need some special attention in the school system. Riordan grew up in Johnson County, and it didn’t take him long to remember Lawrence’s reputation.

“We wanted to go to a place where she would be accepted, and that place was Lawrence,” Riordan said.

Ensuring that Lawrence continues to be that type of place is one of the goals Riordan has as a commissioner.

“I hope this city can continue to be the type of city I saw when I came here — the type of city that cares for its citizens and desperately wants everyone to do well,” Riordan said.

Riordan said having a physician in a leadership position in the city may provide a valuable perspective. If nothing else, it should provide a unique one. Riordan said his research indicates Lawrence has never had a doctor who has served as mayor. And Riordan has done a little bit of mayoral research. A history buff, he and his family live in the historic Ludington-Thacher home in Old West Lawrence. Reuben Ludington was a Lawrence mayor during the time the city was rebuilding from Quantrill’s Raid.

“There is an art of medicine,” said Riordan, who said he has no plans to retire from medicine if elected. “Part of that is understanding what people’s real needs are instead of what they say their real needs are. You have to really like to talk to people, and you need to be intuitive. You have to like the challenge of solving problems.”

Riordan said he likes the idea of trying to solve problems as a city commissioner, but he also said it will be interesting to see what it is like to do so from a political office. Riordan said he figured out long ago — during his senior year at Rockhurst University, when he was student body president — that he didn’t want to be a politician.

“Politicians take a poll and decide what they are going to say after they see the results,” Riordan said. “My thought is to find out what the best situation is for the people, and then do that. That is what leadership is.

“It is not doing what 50 or 60 percent of the people want you to do. You need to do what is right and what is best for everybody.”


Riordan said one of the issues he hopes to tackle is a problem that has been hanging over the city since before he decided to move here 30 years ago.

“I was told not to come to this town because there was too much fighting,” Riordan said. “People told me that is all they do there. We need to get past that perception. I have a concept of one Lawrence. Not east or west or north or south or Chamber (of Commerce) or non-Chamber.”

On other issues, Riordan said he:

• Wants to work on making Lawrence stronger from an economic development standpoint, particularly by increasing the vocational education opportunities in the city.

• Would continue to promote the special role downtown Lawrence plays in attracting people to the community.

• Plans to seek ways to find significant funding to improve the Lawrence Police Department’s facilities. “The situation they have today doesn’t work,” Riordan said. “It is atrocious what they are having to deal with. We have limits to what we can do, but we need to try to do as much as we can for that department.”

A Feb. 26 primary will narrow the field of 11 city commission candidates down to six. The general election — where the top three vote winners will take a seat on the commission — will be April 2.


pti3 1 year, 1 month ago

Current issue on the topic of vaccine testing, please see: US Government Plans To Test Anthrax Vaccine on Children Sunday, 24 February 2013 "Government Fear Mongering: Phony "Pandemics" and Bioterrorist "Threats"  Help stop the US government from injecting children with anthrax vaccine in an experiment whose aim is to justify increased expenditure for BioThrax for civilian stockpile. "


toe 1 year, 1 month ago

A good old fashioned tax and spender. He will do well in the general election.


pti3 1 year, 1 month ago

A couple more on interesting links on reliability of published medical journal articles, bias and ethics in medical research:

The Ethical Nag Marketing Ethics for the Easily Swayed A philosopher’s take on Big Pharma marketing

The New York Review of Books Drug Companies & Doctors: A Story of Corruption January 15, 2009


pti3 1 year, 1 month ago

RE: Chootspa: Not about vaccines or Riordan, but a google search on related topic "bias and reliability in medical research"

The Atlantic Lies, Damned Lies, and Medical Science David H. Freedman Oct 4 2010

Merck Paid Elsevier to Publish Phony Peer-Review Journal

Beware the creeping cracks of bias

Drug Trials Unreliable Because Of 'Spin And Bias', Toronto Study 2013/ 01/ 09/ drug-trials-unreliable-study_n_2443631.html

current ethical violations (in this case, government sponsored research); EPA Diesel Gas & Pollutant Inhalation Experiments Tuesday, 18 December 2012


rooster 1 year, 1 month ago

It's all about the context. I suppose by that same line of reasoning I can call you a Penis Wrinkle since as a human male you likely have one.


letsbehonest 1 year, 1 month ago

then together they would make quite a pair


letsbehonest 1 year, 1 month ago

Riordan is a smart man. He is a good doctor. He is a man who knows what to say and when to say it. And he will go to bat for you as long as it is something that he too believes in, especially if there is money involved. And you know, he is always right and believes what is best for him is indeed what is best for everyone else as well. It is difficult to see others' views when you are used to getting or buying your way in life. That said, if he does not agree with you or your views, or you don't agree with him and his views, he will drop you like a hot potato while turning his back on you as he is walking away. Is that what this city really needs??


rooster 1 year, 1 month ago

I think Dr Riordan is a nice guy for the most part but if he intends on treating those in the community or in the Commission, when he has a disagreement, the way he treats those in his practice who disagree with some of his recommendations he will be an abject failure.
My family really wanted him as the doctor for our two children but when we stated we would not be immunizing our children he bluntly stated he no longer wants our family in his practice. Obviously his choice. Since then I have spoken with a number of other families who he has treated with the same disdain. Our family does not have some hippy mentality where we based our decision on not immunizing on irrational beliefs but when looking at the CDC recommendations for immunizations we determined that the schedule was not appropriate for our family. Giving an infant ages 0-18 months 14 immunization shots for things like Chicken Pox and Tetanus is something we disagree with. Furthermore my wife is a 3rd year Med student so our understanding of Human Biology and Medicine is not something we gleaned from Jenny McCarthy books. I personally think the CDC herd immunization philosophy is so extreme that we will soon see a day when HPV vaccines are given to infant girls.
That said, I think to be a successful commissioner (like anyone in politics) you need to be able to treat those who disagree with you better than he treated us and many other families who disagree with him. I think when becoming a doctor many have a propensity to believe they are always right (that tends to happen after more than a couple of decades of education).


Alceste 1 year, 1 month ago


Nobody makes people rent units in the Oread Neighborhood. Too, the very one's who do the renting do the tearing apart and blight creating.

The more "Ling" houses that can be created in the Oread.....the better....eventually common sense will rule supreme and the bulk of the "neighborhood" will be razed.

With ever increasing crime being allowed to persist and even grow in the Oread KU watches with glee and the simple simons who bought into the neighborhood for "single family dwelling puposes" come to realize just what a horrible mistake they've made....."things" will change in the Oread. What family in it's right mind wants to purchase one of those beat up houses and "refurbish" it only to be surronded by worthless, sense of entitlement children who trash it up? Answer: Only a fool.

Old_Oread_Phart: When are you going to stop your attacks on progress? 1950 done came and went.


oneeye_wilbur 1 year, 1 month ago

Most public meetings have very little worth. They are a place where the wannabes can be seen. The whoring of Oread is done by the city and the county. The city collects , provides very litte services. The county uses Oread as a tax magnet.

KU endorses Oread to be slum like as it prohibits development due to KUEAs involvement with backdoor zoning policies and Oread Residents Association members are used as pawns under the the leadership of Cotton Candy and JJ, who might want to shovel his walks as a dutiful member of ORA, the titular group endorsed by the city commission to be the pawns of Planning and Development.

The true colors of the good doctor will soon surface. Better a brain surgeon run, than a general practitioner.


Old_Oread_Phart 1 year, 1 month ago

Well, there is Alceste, best friends with one-eyed Wilbur. Front-people for the landlords who whore the Oread out on a regular basis.

Alceste, aren't you and Wilbur officers of the Oread Neighborhood oops, Oread Landlords Association now? Seems like you are now responsible for that which you complain about. Such great work you've done.

How many public meetings have either of you been asked to leave in the past, anyway?

If you are a "regular" guy, I'm the King of England.


Alceste 1 year, 1 month ago

Riordan was part of the "inner circle" of the Oread Neighborhood Associaton several years back. He "punted" when he was actually asked to do some real work; and then resigned.

Riordan has never really supported the "regular gal/guy....especially when eating pastry with the sewing circle ONA, which was overturned after the people who had a real stake in the neigborhood bounced the "good doctor" and his cronies out of "office".

Riordan represents and speaks for the wealthy in Alceste's view: If you're from that ilk, you're vote for Riordan will help you control and manipulate your wealth.

On the other hand, if you're just a regular working stiff, this guy is one which you want to make certain does not get elected: He'll side, over and over and over again, with the monied sector.

Heck....his own section of the Oread Neighborhood is fraught with one one agravated burglarly after another; and one battery upon a person after another. Where's Riordan been in making public remarks to address same? See: case number is 02-13-651 from Jan. 19, 2013 and which is an aggravated burglary some three blocks from where Riordan resides in his welfare subsidized estate. (He got his then cronies from the Oread Neighborhood group to help him secure grant monies from the public to assist in his "purchase" of his's not like his doctor's income wasn't enough or anything....but then it's also understood he don't rake his own leaves or shovel his own snow either.......shrug

Putting this "good doctor" in office is like putting a fox in the hen house. What was it that Nancy Reagan said? Something like "Just Say No". Amen


George_Braziller 1 year, 1 month ago

Good luck with that one. Except for the aftermath of Quantrill's Raid, Lawrence has never been unified on anything. It has a long history of internal strife dating back to the late 1800s. The players may have changed but the game's still the same. And it's a lot of the same issues.

"I have a concept of one Lawrence. Not east or west or north or south or Chamber (of Commerce) or non-Chamber.”


jellybeanies 1 year, 1 month ago

I love Terry Riordan. He was a great doctor to my boys when they were growing up. Without him, one of my sons would not have been diagnosed with a medical condition as early as he was. Other doctors had ignored the issue despite the fact that my son had stopped growing at the age of 3. Dr. Riordan didn't take the situation lightly and immediately got us to the right people to properly diagnose him. Without this early detection, my son would have not reached his true growth potential. Children's Mercy explained that without any intervention, my son's adult height would have been 3'6". He made it to 5'5" and he is grateful for that as an adult.

Dr. Riordan has always treated my children with dignity, respect, patience and true concern. I really feel he is a great man and is an asset that should be utilized.


toe 1 year, 1 month ago

A doctor's broad and relentless experience in squeezing every dime from their patients should come in pretty handy in a government job.


Richard Heckler 1 year, 1 month ago

I love this rhetoric ...

" I believe Lawrence residents would benefit from the addition of paths for biking, walking, and running. We have a unique opportunity with K-10 to almost encircle the city from I-70 to 23rd Street. Funding for such paths should be funded within existing budgets for parks and recreation and/or through a public/private partnership or partnership with the state."

How would Terry Riordan get this through the city commission.? The votes are not there now. Lip service is plentiful..... not substance.

All candidates will be good listeners and all past candidates have claimed they would be good stewards of our tax dollars. Year after year voting taxpayers hear this.


ljreader 1 year, 1 month ago

"There is an art of medicine,” said Riordan, who said he has no plans to retire from medicine if elected. “Part of that is understanding what people’s real needs are instead of what they say their real needs are.". Sounds like he knows what is best for us. Now we won't have to think about it.


Richard Heckler 1 year, 1 month ago

His votes on the planning commission had Chamber of Commerce/real estate industry influence written all over them..... if my memory serves me well.

"Member & chairman of the Lawrence-Douglas County Planning Commission. During my term as chairman, I oversaw the drafting and negotiated the passage of the current development regulations."


frankwiles 1 year, 1 month ago

Dr. Riordan is a kind, funny, and excellent doctor. My daughter is only 7 months old, but the few interactions I've had with him make me think he would be an excellent commissioner.


patkindle 1 year, 1 month ago



Catalano 1 year, 1 month ago

Is he planning to be the first doctor-mayor?


JayhawkFan1985 1 year, 1 month ago

How about actually promoting walking and biking in this town by building streets on a traditional grid or a modified grid. You can live a block from somewhere in this town but are often forced to drive a mile to get there. That is why we are so fat. Another idea would be to eliminate drive thru windows at fast food restaurants. Make people take 10 steps to get. Their 1500 calorie value meals...


Commenting has been disabled for this item.