Dr Lawton
<h3>Ronald Lawton, MD</h3>
Phone: 970-625-1510

Emergency Department Medical Director

Dr. Lawton was born in Denver, then moved to Kansas as a child. Growing up, he remembers his mother loving the Glenwood Springs area. They visited often, and he fondly recalls getting his first sunburn there. When asked what drew him halfway across the country to Rifle, CO from Chicago, he told the story of how his great grandparents, John and Nora May Ruple, actually arrived in Western Colorado from Ohio in the early 1900’s. They were both teachers and John was also a photographer. They were on a trip to Yellowstone with a group of other teachers in 1905 when John Ruple proposed to Nora May with the stipulation that they live in Colorado. They first settled in Grand Valley (now known as Parachute) where they both taught. John Ruple was offered the principal position in Rifle and rode his bike there nearly every day to build their home. After retiring from teaching, the Ruples bought a farm in Rifle. John sold their produce to people in Aspen, Carbondale, and all around. Dr. Lawton says he has always loved Western Colorado and hearing about his family’s history here. He is excited for the opportunity at Grand River Health and feels very fortunate to be able to call this area home now!

When asked about what drew him to emergency medicine, he states how much he enjoys the variety of cases he is able to see. “Every day is completely different in the ER, you have the privilege of treating all ages and the entire spectrum of medicine from sore throats to severe trauma”, adds Lawton. “You have the opportunity to help people in what could be one of their worst possible moments.”


  • Medical School: University of Southern California School of Medicine
  • Emergency Residency: Northwestern University in Chicago, where he served as Chief Resident


  • Certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine