The Stikeman Endowment Fund for Surgical Advancement was established following the untimely death of Richard Alan Stikeman in August 1965 of a malignant mesothelioma. The Stikeman and McCall families set up the endowment under the guidance of Mr. Stikeman’s surgeon, Dr. D.D. Munro, who was the Surgeon-in-Chief at the Royal Edward Chest Hospital (now the Montreal Chest Institute) affiliated with McGill University. The fund was mandated to be "people oriented", with the main objective to "sharpen people" who are engaged in the practice, training and research in cardiovascular and thoracic surgery. For more than forty-five years, this fund has supported the Annual Stikeman Visiting Professorship, in which world leaders in cardiovascular and thoracic surgery were invited to visit McGill, gave lectures and participated in discussions. Over the years, it evolved into an occasion for the reunion of previous residents in cardiovascular and thoracic surgery at McGill University, providing a forum for professional, scientific and personal interactions among the alumni, current staff and trainees. Thus, the Stikeman Visiting Professorship has become an outstanding occasion both for scholarship and friendship, contributing significantly to the development and vitality of cardiovascular and thoracic surgery at McGill University. This professorship has been referred to as the “glue” which holds the McGill Division together.