After completing his Bachelor of Science degree at the University of California, Irvine, Dr. Maxwell attended medical school at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland. His specialty training was completed at the Naval Hospital in San Diego, California (surgery), and at the University of Tennessee in Memphis (thoracic surgery), after which Dr. Maxwell became Head of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the Naval Medical Center in San Diego. During his distinguished 20-year naval career, Dr. Maxwell was also appointed Specialty Advisor for Cardiothoracic Surgery to the Navy Surgeon General. He is a Fellow in the American College of Surgeons and a member of the Society of Thoracic Surgeons. He retired as Captain in the United States Navy.
In 1997, Dr. Maxwell moved to Missoula to join The International Heart Institute of Montana. He became Director of Cardiovascular Medicine in 2000. He performs coronary artery bypass surgery, heart valve surgery, thoracic surgery, and specializes in robotic and minimally invasive heart valve surgery. One of only a handful of surgeons nationwide to perform the Ross Procedure, Dr. Maxwell has also trained in and brought several new technologies to St. Patrick Hospital and Health Sciences Center, including minimally invasive surgery and robotic surgery.
Dr. Maxwell has published numerous academic articles on topics including general and thoracic surgery, interesting case studies, the Ross Procedure, and mitral valve repair. He has given presentations and taught during the Rocky Mountain Valve Symposium, mitral valve workshops, and off-site courses for more than 10 years and regularly gives community talks on topics of current interest, including the childhood obesity epidemic. Dr. Maxwell is a past President of the Medical Staff of St. Patrick Hospital and Health Sciences Center, has served on the American Heart Association Community Board, the St. Patrick Hospital Community Benefit Board, and numerous quality improvement and patient care excellence committees. Under his leadership, St. Patrick Hospital and Health Sciences Center Cardiovascular Medicine has received several national awards, including the 2007 Premier Award for Quality for excellence in acute myocardial infarction (heart attack) treatment. Dr. Maxwell serves as the Chief Executive Officer of the International Heart Institute of Montana Foundation.
In their spare time, Dr. Maxwell and his wife, Marian Maxell, Pharm.D., and their two daughters enjoy outdoor activities, including hiking, fly fishing, and biking.