Anita Ruffino Stiffelman, MD
Associate Professor of Clinical Pediatrics, WUSM Community Pediatrician, Rainbow Pediatrics
Pediatric residency: St. Louis Children’s Hospital
Medical degree: New York Medical College, Valhalla, N.Y.
Pediatrics and geriatrics were both of interest to Dr. Stiffelman during medical school because they offered an opportunity to nurture and educate patients. She chose to work with children for several reasons: She liked that her young patients had their whole lives ahead of them, she could coach parents on raising their children and managing their health, and she wanted to be among the most personable set of colleagues in the various medical fields.
Originally from New York City, Dr. Stiffelman first came to St. Louis in 1979 as a National Merit Scholar at Washington University. After returning to New York state for medical school, she married a St. Louis native and moved back to St. Louis for her pediatrics training. She established permanent roots in the community when she went into private practice, founding Rainbow Pediatrics in North St. Louis County in 1990. She now has the pleasure of serving a new generation of families and watching new immigrant populations find their places in American society.
Dr. Stiffelman served as chief of pediatrics at Christian Hospital for 10 years and was a member of the hospital’s Medical Executive Committee. She is a preceptor for residents in the Community Outpatient Practice Experience (COPE) program and for third-year medical students. She was the founding board president for the Circus Day Foundation at the City Museum and has done volunteer work with the National Marrow Donor Program and Catholic Charities.
Dr. Stiffelman’s husband, Louis, is a sound system engineer. Their daughter Andrea graduated from Lehigh University with a degree in computer science and business and now works for Bank of America in New York City. Their daughter Rebecca, a Division I diver, is majoring in business at Boston University.
Dr. Stiffelman’s lifelong hobby has been collecting family history, with the mission of giving children in the family tree (“a forest now!”) a sense of their roots and an appreciation of their ancestors’ journeys. She is compiling family stories into an anthology called Ancestral Spirits. She also enjoys St. Louis’ vibrant landscape of easily accessed cultural events like plays, concerts and symphony performances.