Operation Walk was founded in Los Angeles, California in 1994 by world-renowned orthopedic surgeon Lawrence D. Dorr. During a teaching trip to Russia, Dr. Dorr realized that one of the best ways to teach physicians was to actually demonstrate surgeries exactly as they are performed at advanced medical facilities in the United States. Dr. Dorr then gathered a volunteer team of surgeons, internal medicine doctors, anesthesiologists, nurses, and physical therapists and conducted the first Operation Walk trip to Havana, Cuba.
Operation Walk Denver was started in 2003 after Dr. Douglas A. Dennis, also an internationally known orthopedic surgeon, traveled to Managua, Nicaragua with Dr. Dorr as part of his surgical team and was inspired to create an Operation Walk branch in Denver.
Initially Dr. Douglas Dennis and key Denver medical team members joined core teams from Los Angeles and Indianapolis in order to gain the experience that ultimately launched Operation Walk Denver’s first solo trip to Nicaragua in 2004. Since then, Operation Walk Denver teams of highly-trained healthcare professionals have traveled twice annually to countries such as Panama and Dominican Republic and have successfully helped hundreds of people regain the joy of walking.
Operation Walk Denver relies on the generosity of donors to fund trips each year. Without these donors, it would not be possible to do this amazing work and fulfill the vision of Dr. Dennis to continue changing people’s lives in developing countries.