Margaret Wacker, MD

Dr. Margaret Wacker joined the board of directors of Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles in 2006. Her commitment to peacemaking has very deep roots — During the second world war, Dr Wacker’s parents were among the leading scientists in Washington DC. Her chemist mother led the government’s effort to create synthetic rubber, and her father, a theoretical physicist, worked on the Manhattan Project and later helped develop military radar. Both were very opposed to war, except as a last resort. Her father later participated in numerous scientific exchange programs with East European countries during the Cold War. Margaret met many of the guest workers and often traveled with her parents behind the Iron Curtain during this period. These experiences taught Margaret that these people were not enemies, just other people with similar needs and wants.

Margaret attended the University of Colorado as an undergraduate where she studied physics and mathematics. In the 1970’s, she relocated to Seattle, attending the University of Washington, where she received an advanced degree in physics and did research in bioengineering, and later received a medical degree. From 1982-1989, Margaret performed her residency in Neurosurgery at Loma Linda University, and, later, a fellowship in Neuro-oncology at the University of California, San Francisco.

Dr. Wacker worked from 1993 to 2000, at King-Drew Medical Center. Here she witnessed the unabated horror of gun violence. King-Drew saw three thousand trauma incidents per year, half of which are penetrating wounds, knife and gun-shot wounds. In the 1990’s Margaret worked with the Los Angeles County Violence Prevention Coalition, Handgun Control and Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles. She spoke at press conferences and testified before city councils. More recently, she has been active in the anti-nuclear activities of PSR. She currently is on the faculty of the Western University/Arrowhead Neurosurgery Residency Program. She frequently travels to LA to participate in PSR programs.