The Tipton Award was founded through both the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) and Orthopaedic Research and Education Foundation (OREF). It is an award given to a living AAOS Fellow or Candidate Member who best demonstrates leadership qualities through mentorship, diversity and collaboration that offer benefit to the orthopaedic community and its patients.
Yaszemski is chair, division of spine surgery in the department of orthopaedic surgery and also a member of the musculoskeletal oncology division at the Mayo Clinic. He has been chair of the AAOS Device Forum for the last eight years. The Mayo Clinic's orthopedics department is considered the top program in the country.
Moreover, Yaszemski is in his 33rd year with the United States Air Force Reserve, ascending to the rank of Brigadier General. He currently serves as reserve military advisor to the President of the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences.
Yaszemski completed his bachelor's and master’s degrees in chemical engineering from Lehigh University in 1977 and 1978, respectively, before earning his M.D. at Georgetown, followed by a surgical fellowship at Harvard and a doctorate in chemistry at MIT.
Yaszemski, who also played offensive tackle for the Lehigh football team, is currently a member of the university's Board of Trustees, having joined in 2011.