Eve Slater: Assistant Secretary for Health is a Doctor First and Foremost
BY PETER WORTSMAN
ITS A HOP, SKIP, AND A JUMP FROM HER OFFICE IN THE HUBERT Humphrey Building, headquarters of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, where the nations health policy is shaped, to the U.S. Capitol, where health-related bills await their turn to be debated beforepolitics willingpassing into law. The proximity is both exhilarating and daunting to Eve Slater71, U.S. Assistant Secretary for Health, whose job description includes the oversight of the U.S. Public Health Service.
Every once in a while, Dr. Slater admits, you pinch yourself and say, this is me, Im really here. Not that shes had much time to sit back and enjoy the view.
SOS Anthrax: A Public Health Call to Action
Officially confirmed on Jan. 25, 2002, though she put in time well before that, the new Assistant Secretary for Health and helmswoman of the Office of Public Health and Science hit the ground running. At 9 a.m. sharp on the very first day she reported to work, the telephone rang and the first report came through of a postal worker admitted to the Washington Hospital Center with anthrax infection. So, literally, my first few months in office were spent with dailythree or four times a daymeetings and briefings and huddles. The coordinated effort that included the Department of Health and Human Services, the Public Health Service, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Food and Drug Administration opened lines of communication with health officials, hospitals, and law enforcement in the affected areas, recommending precautionary measures and appropriate treatment, ultimately controlling the problem and helping to curtail the widespread panic.
And while the nation was shaken to the core and is still suffering the ramifications of 9/11, the unsolved anthrax attack, and the protracted war on terror, Dr. Slater takes some solace in the heightened public awareness. One of the few positive things that came out of all this, she says, is a rekindled interest in public health. We had been in a heyday of wealth and prosperity and what I term designer medicine. You got new hips, you got new hearts, you got new genesmaybe. And sure it was expensive, but the entrepreneurs were basically going full speed ahead, assuming there was going to be a market. In the meantime, for all intents and purposes, people forgot about public health.
In the wake of 9/11, Dr. Slater believes, America has awakened to the common good, that we do need a public health infrastructure. We need to worry about the kids in the inner cities who arent getting immunized. We need to worry about our senior citizens in nursing homes who are being overmedicated on the wrong medicines. I think, ultimately, weve come to realize that were all in this together.
Sorrows Silver Lining: The Will to Rebuild the Public Health System
Bristling at some critics suggestions that in focusing on bioterrorism and homeland security, Washington may be neglecting other pressing public health concerns, Dr. Slater is convinced that the new precautionary measures being set in place will ultimately benefit the entire system.
Under the bioterrorism bill, yes, the first priority is to make sure our citizens are not exposed to undue risk from biothreats, and to make sure that the states can respond to a nuclear, biological, or chemical attack. But in so doing, she points out, were rebuilding the public health system. This is the money that weve so desperately needed to put back into the states to rebuild the infrastructure. So just because they develop a list of the elderly invalids in nursing homes who might need a smallpox vaccination, that same list can be used for flu immunization. The same electronic communications system and administrative infrastructure now being installed in various states to facilitate rapid response in case of attack, she adds, will likewise facilitate response to AIDS, an enemy in some ways far worse than Mr. Bin Laden, obesity, and other pressing public health needs.
Clearly, one can never deny the power of money, the Assistant Secretary acknowledged in the Charles Leighton Memorial Lecture she delivered Oct. 19, 2002, to the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics of the University of Pennsylvania. Her talk, titled Fostering Innovation in Medicine and Research, stressed the governments role as a facilitator of private initiative and referee of quality control. While crediting the importance of a strong federal commitment to biomedical research, she underlined the substantial investment of funds and brainpower of the private sector. As the former senior vice president of Merck Research Laboratories (the first woman to attain this rank in the company), Dr. Slater herself helped harvest the fruits of innovation.
In the course of her nearly 18-year tenure at Merck, she was responsible for, among other notable accomplishments, the rapid approval of Crixivan to treat HIV infection, and she helped hasten the approval of major medicines to treat hypertension, cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, asthma, arthritis, prostate disease, and vaccines for chicken pox and H. influenzae.
Her erstwhile boss and fellow P&S alumnus, P. Roy Vagelos54, retired chairman and CEO of Merck & Co, salutes her appointment. As head of regulatory functions at Merck, Dr. Vagelos recalls, Eve was a superb spokeswoman because she understood the science so well, therefore bridging the gap between what is accomplished in the lab and what will have an impact on humans and human disease. The Department of Health and Human Services is an important new challenge and another place where she will, Im quite sure, make important contributions to human health.
From Academic Medicine to Merck to Washington
Dr. Slater has long been a leader, mastering multiple professional challenges in the course of her career and knocking down a gender barrier or two in the process. In 1976, she became the first woman appointed chief resident in medicine at the Massachusetts General Hospital. I was just the natural person to pick as I love to teach, she says. She later served as chief of the hypertension unit there and joined the Harvard medical faculty, becoming assistant professor of medicine in 1979. Directing laboratory research funded by the NIH and the American Heart Association, she published widely on biochemical mechanisms in blood pressure control and diseases of the aorta while simultaneously devoting much of her time to teaching and patient care.
Recognition was not slow in coming. In 1977, she was named one of the Ten Outstanding Young Leaders of Boston and the following year made Whos Who of American Women. In 1981, Boston Magazine included her in its list of Bostons 100 New Female Leaders, Next magazine ranked her among the 100 Most Powerful People for the Eighties, and the Journal of the American Medical Womens Association described her accomplishments in its Profile of a Young Achiever. Among more recent honors, Dr. Slater is the recipient of the 2003 Virginia Kneeland Frantz22 Distinguished Woman in Medicine Award at P&S.
Of Music, Medicine, and Motherhood
Her extra-medical achievements hardly lagged behind. A talented flutist, Dr. Slater appeared in 1975 as a soloist with Arthur Fiedler and the Boston Pops. She started playing the flute early in life and studied with some of Americas foremost flutists, including Murray Panitz of the Philadelphia Orchestra and Julius Baker, first flutist of the New York Philharmonic.
Harmonic skills would come in handy in raising her two sons, Peter and James, now college students. In the commencement speech she gave at James graduation from the Newark Academy on June 9, 2002, a speech that eloquently linked the needs of science, society, and the soul, she noted that being a mother is my most distinguished title.
But the balancing act of family and professional life was not always easy. I think its harder on women because of conflicting expectations, she says. Women invest so much in their careers and then, all of a sudden, oops, youve got kids, and parenting is a 100 percent full-time job unto itself. And then youve got to get very good at juggling your time.
Fortunately, she says, medicine has loosened up a little. Theyve allowed more flex time, larger group practices, half-time jobs for women with families, all of which is moving in the right direction.
As a Vassar undergraduate, though intrigued by biology, Eve Slater initially contemplated a professional career in music. Then one day, out of the blue, her father, an MIT-trained theoretical mathematician-turned actuary, said, Well, what about medicine? Who me?! I hate the sight of blood! was her knee-jerk response. And plus, she added, I would never want the responsibility. Whereupon her father replied, Well, if you dont take the responsibility, who will? His words hit home.
Her first choice of medical school was P&S. If I dont like it, she figured, I can always drop out and go to Juilliard. At P&S, she played with the Bard Hall Orchestra and managed to squeeze in music lessons on the side with master flutist Julius Baker, still a dear friend. But it was the art of medicine that really captured her imagination. Once I arrived on the wards and actually started taking care of patients, the decision was very clear. The whole educational experience at P&S really sold me on medicine.
Dr. Slater credits the influence of such truly inspiring teachers as Paul Marks, John Loeb, Andy Frantz, Henry Azar, and the late Sven Kister and Arthur Wertheim, among many others. They were all just so good at what they did and, clearly, so happy in their professional lives.
Women in medicine were still a minority at the time. She has stayed in touch with several other women in her class, all of whom are in active practice today. Though she cannot recall any overt gender-related hostility in medical school, she acknowledges, in hindsight, that over the years, women have had to evolve their own personal style of expressing themselves. Many of us have struggled with an identity issue of how aggressive or un-aggressive to be. Since there were fewer of us back then than there are now, people were kind of looking at us with microscopes. It was a fine balance to figure out how to come across. Unfazed by such close attention, it was only a matter of time before Dr. Slater turned the lens around and began to look outward at the big picture.
The Call to Public Service
I had no political background at all, she recalls, but gradually, I came to realize the importance to the practice of medicine of the health debates that occur on the floor of the Congress. So, increasingly, I became more involved, I read and learned. And actually, my last year at Merckthough I didnt know then it was going to be my lastI switched into a position concerned with external policy that put me right at the interface between the private sector, academic medicine, and government.
The fact that another high-profile M.D., the newly elected Senate Majority Leader, Sen. Bill Frist from Tennessee, a surgeon by training, is making waves in Washington prompts the question: Should more M.D.s get involved in government?
Dr. Slater is careful in her response. The simple answer is, of course, yes. The more youre aware of whats going on the more you can have a say in whats going on, instead of just simply letting it all happen. She cautions, however, against the dangers of information overload. I guess the trickdepending on your capacity and how many hours of sleep you needis to really hone in on just a few topics or issues in which you can make a difference. I do think that its increasingly important for medical schools to teach courses on health policy.
The Human Element in Translating Information and Putting Policy into Action
In a talk titled Attack on America: Rebuilding the U.S. Public Health Infrastructure, which she delivered April 23, 2002, to the Commissioned Officers Association in Atlanta, Dr. Slater saluted her troops, the 6,000 officers of the Public Health Service, as the human element in translating scientific information and policy into action at the state and local level...[working]... to bring the message of healthy life styles and education about behavior modification to our fellow Americans. The focus of public health has evolved, she said in the speech, always...embracing a new frontier, from health of seamen, quarantining of travelers, the improvement of workers safety, or dealing with natural disasters, or man-made events such as the tragedies of Sept. 11 and anthrax. While mourning the tragic loss of human life from terrorist attacks, she reminded her colleagues of the pressing need to address and control preventable diseases. High on her list of public health priorities is grappling with the epidemic of behaviors that place Americans at risk.
Fielding Goals for The Prevention Secretary
Dr. Slater predicts that her boss, Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson, will become known as The Prevention Secretary. She cites as a precedent Badger Care, the health insurance program he instituted in Wisconsin as governor. When it comes to prevention, the secretary and his assistant couldnt be more in sync.
In the United States today, we have a growing epidemic of our own making. We are literally eating ourselves to death, she declared in the Newark Academy speech. There are no magic bullets, she warned the fast food enthusiasts in attendance, proposing a national agenda to modify eating habits. Elsewhere, she has argued that chronic conditions such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes are among the most prevalent, costly, and preventable of all health problems.
As head of the Office of Public Health and Science, Dr. Slater oversees the functions of 12 offices, including those in charge of the national vaccine program, disease prevention and health promotion, minority health, womens health, and the presidents Council on Physical Fitness. The Office of the Surgeon General is also under her watch, as are offices for human research protection, research integrity, and population affairs. As if that werent enough for one plate, Dr. Slater adds, I also drive some special projects for the secretary on public health. Hes particularly interested right now in improving the system of health care practice in this country. To that end, Dr. Slater has launched the Best Practice Initiative, an ongoing effort to establish and address key factors, including substance abuse and tobacco abuse, that affect the health of the American family.
Health and the Information Highway
Gathering medical knowledge, data, and know-how is vital, she says, but no less important is the need to get that information into the hands of those who can use it to make a difference. I share the secretarys view that one of the keys to changing the health systemand improving care, reducing errors, and, over the long term, saving moneyis to fully incorporate information technology into the health care delivery system, she said in an October 2002 speech at the third annual Health Legacy Partnership Conference at the National Press Club.
She put the problem succinctly: An explosion of new knowledge resulting from biomedical and health research has surpassed the ability of individual practitioners to absorb and apply it during the normal course of delivering care.
To redress this information gap, Dr. Slater advocates the creation of electronic medical records for the general public of the kind that military personnel already carry throughout their careers and into veteran status. With the proven popularity and effectiveness of health websites, she argues, we still have a lot further to go to give people control over their own personal health information. In the same speech, she lauded the new bar coding technology, which Secretary Thompson has instructed the FDA to begin using in prescription drugs to reduce preventable medication errors.
Always a Doctor First and Foremost
While much of her day is taken up directing the smooth running of a massive federal bureaucracy, theres nothing the least bit bureaucratic about Dr. Slater. Forthright and plain spoken, shes still in the business of healing. I have always, throughout my career, considered myself a doctor first and foremost. Even though I did other thingsI taught, I did research, I ran regulatory affairs at Merckunderlying it all, I have just tried to practice good medicine.
At press time, P&S learned of Dr. Slaters resignation as Assistant Secretary for Health.
Rx for Travel:
Madcap, Messy, Magical Marseille, Frances Oldest (and Most Congenial) City
BY PETER WORTSMAN
An exchange agreement between P&S and the University of Marseille and medical roots that reach back to antiquity make Marseille a prime destination for medical students and M.D.s with a gusto for life.
Maybe its the mistral, the mythic north wind that can spread a premature chill or whisk a sky so clear of clouds youd swear it was competing with the sea. Theres no point sweeping up after it and nobody bothers. Or maybe its the city trying to make like the deep. Settled by Greek sailors in the 6th century B.C., Marseille, Frances oldest city, mirrors the whole Mediterranean basin with whirlpools of humanity and barnacles of habitation crawling up the bluffs.
Wed breezed through town eight summers ago to register my newborn son Jacques at the American consulate and liked it well enough to leap at an invitation from the southern branch of my wife Claudies extended family to visit between Christmas 2002 and New Years 2003. Whatever the season, the sky is always blue.
The throbbing heart of Marseille is the Vieux Port, once the worlds third most important commercial port, today a picturesque haven for small fishing smacks and pleasure craft. Fish mongers still peddle their fresh catch dockside every morning. Ste. Niccolo, a food stand on the Quai Rive Neuve, specializes in a favorite salty snack, pannisse, a fried chick pea paste. And for the nominal fare of half a Euro (50 cents), you can mingle with the gulls from an old ferry boat.
Behind the baroque Hôtel de Ville (City Hall), just off the Quai du Port, medically minded visitors can admire the shell of the 18th century Hôtel Dieu, the citys oldest hospital, now defunct. Though its original location is unknown, the ancient medical school of Marseille, established here by the Greeks and modeled after the famous medical school of Alexandria, counted among its most illustrious alumni Demosthenes, praised by Galen as an anatomist and oculist of note. The sunlight proved conducive to the study of the eye. Another medical site in the vicinity, the Pavillon Daviel, once housed the Faculty of Medicine, where in 1745 Dr. Jacques Daviel performed the first successful cataract operation.
Comprising multiple urban enclaves and cozy coves, Marseille has managed to temper its big city pace with a multi-layered, small town feel. Steep, winding streets climb the medieval hilltop district of Le Panier, atop which windmills once whirled. A short drive along the breathtakingly beautiful coastal road, the Corniche Kennedy, leads to the Vallon-des-Auffes, a tiny inlet lined with pastel- colored fisherman shanties. A seaward peak offers a dramatic view of Chateau dIf, the fabled island lockup of the Count of Monte Cristo. Up the road, another colorful fishing village-turned neighborhood, Les Goudes, hugs Marseilles maritime limits.
The citys salty essence bubbles up in its bouillabaisse, the world-famous fish casserole best savored at the Restaurant Le Miramar, a culinary fixture on the Old Port (12, Quai du Port, Tel: 33 (0)4/91-91-10-40reservations a must). The wide-mouthed gray rascasse, the king fish of the dish, sits like a grinning gangster atop the succulent heap doused in saffron-spiced broth. Once a humble fishermans stew, the scarcity of its fishy fixings has driven up the price. A dry white wine from nearby Cassis washes it down nicely.
Posh lodgings can be had at the Hôtel Le Petit Nice Passédat, on the Corniche Kennedy (tel. 33 (0)4/91-59-25-92; www.petitnice-passedat.com), along with, some say, the best restaurant in town. The New Hotel Vieux Port (Tel. 33 (0)4/91-99-23-23; www.new-hotel.com) is a more modest, albeit scenic, option. The impecunious can always stretch out on the beach.
Alumni Association Activities
Student performers from the Bard Hall Players presented a musical appetizer as a taste of their production, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, to kick off the Nov. 13, 2002, council dinner at the Faculty Club. Alumni Association president Shearwood McClelland74 introduced the guest speaker, Ethel S. Siris71, the Madeline C. Stabile Professor of Clinical Medicine at P&S and director of the osteoporosis center at CPMC. A noted endocrinologist and clinical investigator on osteoporosis and the skeletal complications of cancer, Dr. Siris is best known for her work on biphosphonate compounds and selective estrogen receptor modulators in metabolic bone disease. Dr. Siris discussed osteoporosis, which affects one of two postmenopausal women and one of eight older men. The diseases common complications include hip and vertebral fractures and the possibility of respiratory compromise. Dr. Siris elaborated on current treatment regimens, including antiresorptive agents. The speakers daughter, Sara, a second-year P&S student, was among those on hand.
Dean Gerald Fischbach hosted and delivered remarks at the Jan. 22, 2003, council dinner in Bard Hall. Applications to medical school have declined nationwide, he said, but P&S continues to compete effectively with our peer institutions for the most qualified applicants. In his state of the school address, Dean Fischbach reported the recent recruitment of two stars in their respective fields, gastroenterologist David Brenner to chair the Department of Medicine and gynecologist Mary DAlton to chair obstetrics and gynecology. On the physical front, the dean said Columbia has more than 3 million square feet available to grow. We can, with the will, cooperation, and money, expand into this space. On a more somber note, Dean Fischbach voiced concern that the pall of terrorism over the country had really changed the way government views science, a change in the culture of science. He cited, among other concerns, the challenge to stem cell research and his perception that important appointments to scientific advisory committees were being made on political, rather than scientific, grounds. For many of us in the profession it becomes obvious that science is not as free and creative as it once was.
Asian Columbia Alumni/ae Association Awards Dinner Honors Clyde Wu56
More than 250 Asian alumni joined faculty and friends from all schools of Columbia University at Low Library Nov. 4, 2002, for a gala benefit dinner to help launch the Asian Columbia Alumni/ae Association Scholarship Fund and to salute one of the Universitys most distinguished and successful alumni, Clyde Y.C. Wu56. The event was co-chaired by two other P&S alumni, David T.W. Chiu73 and Esther Ho Kung76. You have to experience Clyde Wu first-hand to know that he doesnt do things at a distance, said P&S Dean Gerald Fischbach in introducing Dr. Wu. He has been a wonderful adviser to me about programs, people, and strategy. When I asked him why he created three professorships at Columbia P&S, he replied quite simply because I felt the school needed them.
Dr. Wu received a standing ovation as he accepted the 2002 Distinguished Achievement Award of the Asian Columbia Alumni/ae Association. In addition to his work as a respected cardiopulmonary specialist in the metropolitan Detroit area and his teaching on the faculty of Wayne State University School of Medicine, Dr. Wu, a second-term trustee of Columbia University and chairman of the Trustees Health Sciences Committee, as well as member of the New York-Presbyterian Hospital trustees, has had a mighty hand in helping to spread Columbias international medical mission. He helped champion and coordinate medical educational exchanges between P&S and leading medical centers in China and Hong Kong.
I accept this award not for myself, said Dr. Wu, but for the forefathers who blazed the path so that we were able to enjoy our careers. I also accept this to thank you because you are welcoming in the next generation of Asian students.
Another Columbia University trustee, Savio W. Tung (Engineering73), a member of the Engineering Council and one of the co-founders of the Asian Alumni Association, introduced the evenings keynote speaker, Lee C. Bollinger (Law71), president of Columbia University.
President Bollinger saluted Dr. Wu as someone who really engages in a questioning of what Columbia is and what it might be. Reflecting on the role of the university in our society, the president continued, one of the things that we in the academic world have is the time to sit back and think about the things the rest of the world doesnt have time to reflect on. Medicine, he pointed out, situated as it is at the crossroads of science and humanism, literally soothes the heart as it feeds the soul. President Bollinger said friends of learning like Dr. Wu and his wife, Helen, a former concert pianist and equal partner in her husbands philanthropic endeavors, embody the very best of what Columbia is all about.
Minority Student-Alumni Dinner
More than 150 alumni, students, faculty, and friends turned out Nov. 15, 2002, for the annual minority student-alumni dinner at the Faculty Club. The program was directed by Lester W. Blair74, chairman of the Committee on Minority Affairs. Dean Gerald Fischbach delivered greetings and saluted the evenings honoree, Dr. Gerald E. Thomson (Hon. P&S96) as an outstanding role model for us all.
The dinner speaker, Dr. Hilda Y. Hutcherson, the new associate dean for diversity and minority affairs, saluted her predecessor, Dr. Thomson, as a mentor and a friend. In her remarks she said, Inequality in health care remains a reality today in America. According to the recent Institute of Medicine survey, health disparities among minorities still persist. Even when education and socioeconomic class are held constant, African-Americans, Latinos, and native Americans receive inferior medical care and are more likely to die of their illnesses than other groups.
If we are to address racial and ethnic disparities in health care we must work to increase the diversity of healthcare workers.
P&S Alumni Association president Shearwood McClelland74 presented, on behalf of the Alumni Association, a Tiffany weighted crystal plaque to Dr. Thomson in recognition of his outstanding contributions, dedication, and commitment to the College of Physicians & Surgeons.
Hes not a household name on Broadway or on TV but in the real world of life and death issues he is truly a time-tested healer, leader, teacher, role model, and heroand, most fortunately, also a friend to all of us, said Dr. McClelland.
Dr. Thomson is the Lambert and Sonneborn Professor of Medicine and senior associate dean at P&S. A prime mover in American health care, he served as president of the American College of Physicians and chairman of the American Board of Internal Medicine and was a founder and past president of the Association of Academic Minority Physicians.
Bard Hall Student Lounge Ribbon Cutting
On a chilly Jan. 22, 2003, wielding one gargantuan pair of scissors, representatives of the administration, the Alumni Association, and the student body surgically severed the ribbon that symbolically wrapped the newly renovated and virtually re-born Bard Hall Lounge, now called the Class of 1970 Bard Hall Student Lounge.
I dont know how much studying is going to go on here, but its going to be a great gathering place, remarked Thomas Q. Morris58, Alumni Professor of Clinical Medicine, vice president for health sciences, and vice dean of the faculty, who spoke on behalf of Dean Fischbach. Our student body is our greatest resource. Youre not only our present, youre our future.
As ice sheets flowed down the Hudson River in the arctic chill of a long winter, one memory warmed the mood of the occasion. Among the alumni on hand were married couple Norman Bank53 and Ronee Hermann54, who met in the lounge 50 years ago and marked their anniversary by snuggling on a brand new couch.
Regional Gatherings in the Lone Star State
Oscar Garfein65 and associate dean Dr. Anke Nolting represented the P&S Alumni Association at two Texas pow wows. On Jan. 24, 2003, Norman Diamond74 and his wife, Laura, hosted a dinner at their home in Dallas. The fare was spicy Tex-Mex. Attendees included internist Burton51 and pediatrician Mollie52 Combes, both originally from the East Coast, who enjoyed reminiscing, catching up, and comparing notes with old friends and alumni from later years. Then it was on to San Antonio for lunch at the Argyle Club on Jan. 26, hosted by Marvin Forland58, and his wife, Ellinor. Dorothy Brewer43D co-hosted the event but was not able to attend because of illness. The Argyle Club sits within an old plantation. Both events were characterized by a lively exchange of ideas between the New York contingent and those who have carried the P&S message to the Southwest.
BY MARIANNE WOLFF52
JOHN L. POOL serves as adviser on ethics to the First Selectman of Wilton, Conn. He is also a member of the Ethics Committee at Norwalk Hospital.
The University of Vermont Clinical Research Center established the ETHAN ALLEN SIMS Clinical Research Feasibility Award to honor its founder for his many contributions to clinical research, mainly in the fields of obesity and diabetes. This is the second award named for Ethan, the first being the Ethan Allen Sims Young Investigator Award, given by the National Association for the Study of Obesity.
HUGH BARBER, former chairman of ob/gyn at Lenox Hill Hospital, has been honored with the establishment of a lectureship in his name by the Society of Gynecologic Oncologists. The lecturers will be selected from among the leaders in the field who have significantly contributed to the advancement of the treatment, management, and cure of gynecologic cancers.
While continuing as associate dean at NYU medical school, MICHAEL S. BRUNO is now emeritus chairman of the Department of Medicine at Lenox Hill Hospital, a position he held for 35 years. Lenox Hill Hospital honored Mike by naming the chairmanship of medicine for him.
The Puerto Rico chapter of the American College of Physicians selected VICTOR M. TORRES for the 2003 Special Achievement Award. In addition to his medical activities, Victor is a painter (a 75x48 oil portrait of the first Puerto Rican saint will decorate the San Juan de la Cruz church currently under construction). Victor also has published a book of short stories, which he illustrated, titled Los Porfiricos y Otros Cuentos Hipocraticos.
JOHN B. HILL has published a novel, Watchers and Tellers, based on his experiences at P&S and the University of North Carolina medical school.
HERMAN GROSSMAN retired from the faculty of Duke University medical school in 1997. Upon his retirement, Dukes Department of Radiology established the annual Herman Grossman Lecture in Pediatric Radiology and presented Herman with a portrait of himself, which will hang in the pediatric radiology department.
A Commission on Health Science, Education, and Training has been appointed by the New Jersey governor, and it is chaired by P. ROY VAGELOS, former CEO of Merck and current chairman of the board of Regeneron Pharmaceuticals. Another member of the commission is Dean GERALD D. FISCHBACH.
JOHN P. LEDDY was elected master of the American College of Rheumatology in 2002. He still does some teaching at the University of Rochester.
GEORGE M. BURNELL had his latest book, Beating the Odds: A Boyhood under Nazi-Occupied France, published late in 2002.
Oxford University Press has published Listening to Patients, a book that its author RICHARD G. DRUSS believes should be of interest to his classmates and other P&S alumni.
GEORGE P. CANELLOS holds an endowed chair in medicine, the William Rosenberg Professorship, and continues his teaching, patient care, and clinical research in oncology at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute in Boston. FRED HOPPING has retired as professor of medicine and physiology at Brown University. He says he is still doing pretty much the sameI just dont get paid for it.
In November 2002, NORBERT HIRSCHHORN shared the first annual Pollin Prize in Pediatric Research for his discovery and implementation of oral rehydration therapy.
DOROTHY S. LANE has been named a Distinguished Service Professor by the State University of New York; she continues as vice chair and residency program director in the Department of Preventive Medicine as well as associate dean for CME at the medical school at Stony Brook. In addition, Dorothy is principal investigator for the NIH Womens Health Initiative Clinical Center at Stony Brook. At the 25th anniversary of the Crime Victims Treatment Center at St. Lukes-Roosevelt Hospital Center, ELEANOR SCHUKER was honored for her leadership and vision in founding the center in 1977. Her work and support forever changed the ways in which law enforcement and medical professionals respond to victims of crime, read the citation. The event was celebrated at a gala at the American Museum of Natural History. The Crime Victims Treatment Center provides trained advocates plus professional help for victims of violent crimes, such as sexual assault. Eleanor served as the programs first psychiatric director from 1977 to 1980. Currently she is a training and supervising analyst at Columbias psychoanalytic clinic and associate clinical professor of psychiatry at P&S.
KENT SALTONSTALL, who created a lecture series in orthopedic radiology at the University of Washington School of Medicine, received the Golden Apple Teaching Award for this effort on two occasions.
VIRGINIA A. LIVOLSI has been elected president of the U.S.-Canadian Academy of Pathology for 2003-2004.
T. STEPHEN BALCH produced a brochure, Patients first, for the P&S Alumni Association. Conceived as a handbook for patients, it includes a patient information form and a helpful list of contact telephone numbers and web sites of medical organizations in various specialties. PETER MOYER, who retired as chairman of emergency medicine at Boston University after 17 years, became medical director of Bostons Emergency Medical Services, Fire and Police Departments. His 32-year-old son, a firefighter, was among the victims of the World Trade Center attack on Sept. 11, 2001. Z. NICHOLAS ZAKOV is a founding member and first president of the American Society for Ocular Trauma. He lives and works in the Cleveland area. This information was inadvertently listed with the Class of 1966 in the Winter 2003 issue.
TAN J. PLATT has become president of the South Carolina Academy of Family Physicians. He is vice chairman of family preventive medicine at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, S.C.
VINCENT R. BONAGURA is director of the allergy and immunology division at North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health Systems. In 2002 he was appointed director of the American Board of Allergy and Immunology for a five-year term. He was also named a member of the Residency Review Committee for Allergy and Immunology of the American Commission on Graduate Medical Education.
The American Gastroenterological Association presented one of its 2002 Distinguished Clinician Awards to IRA S. GOLDMAN.
DOUGLAS G. STEIN is co-founder of the Vasectomy Support Foundation, a not-for-profit corporation that promotes use of Title X Family Planning Funds for vasectomy services and helps pay for vasectomies for low-income uninsured men without access to Title X funds. Since 2002, 275 low-income men received vasectomy services. Doug has calculated the personal and social advantages and ramifications of his foundation, comparing it with the cost and risks of less dependable means of contraception.
The Association of American Medical Colleges has honored RALPH F. JOSEFOWICZ with the national Robert J. Glaser Alpha Omega Alpha Award. The award recognizes outstanding medical school educators. Dr. Josefowicz was recognized for the role he played in directing the reorganization of the neurology curriculum into a seamless continuum at the University of Rochester, where he is professor of neurology and medicine and associate chairman for education. Since 1998, the Mind, Brain and Behavior course has become a model pre-clinical course in the universitys new curriculum. The success of this course has received national attention and Dr. Josefowicz has been invited to several medical schools in the United States and Canada to review their pre-clinical neural science curricula.. He also has developed the neurology residency training program into one of the most successful programs in the country.
CELIA J. MAXWELL is assistant vice president for health affairs at Howard University. Her job entails considerable travel, which she enjoys.
RON COHEN has been elected chairman of the board of directors of the New York Biotechnology Association for 2003-2004. Ron is founder and CEO of Acorda Therapeutics, a biotechnology company thats developing therapies for spinal cord injury and related neurological conditions, including multiple sclerosis. In November 2002, his company received the L.W. Freeman Award for Scientific Research. This award is presented annually for pioneering research on regeneration in spinal cord injury or disease. Acorda has received grant support from the NIH. The latest grant, dated December 2002, supports collaborative research between Acorda and the Mayo Clinic. STEVEN ORLAND was elected president of the Mercer County Medical Society in the spring of 2002. He is leading the fight for tort reform in New Jersey. LISA OZICK is the chief of gastroenterology at Harlem Hospital, which remains, in her words, an important if sometimes overlooked Columbia affiliate. The gastroenterology department, she reports, cares for a challenging urban population, trains fellows, and participates in major clinical and pharmaceutical trials. It is a hectic but rewarding place.
MICHAEL A. DORMAN is chief of the dermatology division at Huron Valley Hospital in Michigan. He is president-elect of the Michigan Dermatologic Society.
JOSEPH A. NAPOLI, who received both his D.D.S. and M.D. degrees from Columbia, has become chief of plastic and maxillofacial surgery at the Alfred I. DuPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, Del.
MARY BONGIOVI-GARCIA and her husband, Reuben, became the parents of a daughter in July 2002. Attending the happy event were obstetrician KATARINA EISINGER93 and anesthesiologist PAMELA FLOOD-RADOSLOVICH90.