Class Notes: October 2017

Class Notes:
Paul E. Schwartz, MD’60
Retired from private practice, buy enjoys volunteering at Americares.

Robert M. Weiss, MD’60
Dr. Weiss received the 2017 John W. Duckett, MD Pediatric Urology Research Excellence Award from the Urology Care Foundation.

Allen P. Kaplan, MD’65
Completed 50 years of basic and applied clinical research on the pathogenesis and therapy of bacteria and angioedema.

Paul S. Quentzel, MD’71
I am residing in Pompano Beach, Florida. I have retired 1 year ago from the practice of Gastroenterology. I am volunteering GI at a clinic in Boyton Beach, Florida for indigent patients. I look forward to seeing classmates at the 50th Reunion in 2018.

Ronald S. Green, MD’74
Dr. Green has retired from Clinical Gastroenterology practice and University of Connecticut faculty. He remains on Boston Hospital Board of Directors and Bristol Hospital and CT Hospital Association Quality Improvement Committees. Enjoying travel, grandchildren, outdoor activities and multiple volunteering opportunities.

James J. Hederman, MD’ 80
Dr. Hederman has celebrated his 25th year as a Jesuit.

David H. Berman, MD’82
Became the recipient of the Richard C. Troutman Master in Ophthalmology at the 2017

Lynne J. Goldberg, MD’86
Dr. Goldberg has been honored with an endowed professorship – The Jag Bhawan Professor of Dermatology – at Boston University School of Medicine.

Joy S. Feld, MD’01
Dr. Feld has been an internist in private practice at Cedars-Sinai in Los Angeles since 2004.

Herminio Diaz, MD’ 09
Dr. Diaz is starting at Mid-Hudson Regional Medical Center as a Surgeon in November.
Alumni Award Ceremony.


In Memoriam:

George A. Sirignano, M.D’43
George A. Sirignano, M.D. of Heritage Hills, Somers, NY, died Thursday, June 2, 2011 at the age 92. Dr. Sirignano was born February 18, 1919 in Mount Vernon, NY, to Alfonso and Rosa (Cerbone) Sirignano. He attended Mount Vernon schools and graduated from Columbia College in 1940 and from the Long Island College of Medicine (Downstate Medical) in 1943. He married Helen Neubauer on January 14, 1944. She predeceased him on August 15, 2004. To read the rest of his obituary click here.

David Cugell, MD’47
Dr. David W. Cugell, an esteemed director emeritus of Respiratory Health Association, died December 5, 2016, at the age of 93. Dr. Cugell was a 50+ year volunteer with RHA, continuing his advocacy well after his board service here ended.  Dr. Cugell had a special interest in climate change and lung health, and in recent years had been a key supporter of RHA efforts in this arena. To read the complete obituary click here.

Elizabeth M. MacDonald, MD’54
Dr. MacDonald died peacefully in her new home on May 19, 2017 after a long illness. She was the beloved wife of Leo J. Macdonald Jr. M.D. Loving mother to Leo J. MacDonald III and his wife Nina of Raleigh, NC, Michael J. MacDonald and his wife Berline of Newport, KY, Brian C. MacDonald of Lynnfield, Robert D. MacDonald and his wife Elva of Sagamore Beach, and John A. MacDonald and his wife Dawn of VA Beach, VA, and Nancy Rodig and her husband Scott of Westwood. Sister of Marian Ambrosiano of Long Island, NY and Eleanor Hefferin of Ft. Myers, Florida. Also survived by 10 grandchildren. To read the rest of her obituary click here.

Kenneth Roth, MD’69
Dr. Roth died in 2017. He leaves behind wife Seth-Deborah, and daughter Samantha-Ann.

David A. Goldstein, MD’72
David Aaron Goldstein, M.D., who co-founded the Pacific Center for Health Policy and Ethics in 1990 and served as its Co-Director, died on May 22, 2017, at his home, after a year-long illness, at the age of 71. A leader who contributed enormously to the development of medicine at the Keck School of Medicine and the university’s private and public hospitals, Dr. Goldstein was a beloved physician, teacher, mentor, and colleague. To read the complete obituary click here.


Stay in touch with SUNY Downstate alumni!
Make sure we have your correct address and email, here.

new-logo

Advertisements

First Year Mentoring Program

The Mentoring Program sponsored by the Alumni Association has continued to be a positive addition to the Medical Student experience here at SUNY Downstate College of Medicine. To date, the program has served over 2,000 students and procured the services of about 270 faculty and alumni.

Students are provided with an opportunity to engage with other medical students and faculty.  In the month of September, 5 MS1 mentoring sessions were held. First year students were matched with  faculty mentors.

Faculty mentors can answer questions about what being a physician demands and provide students patients and clinical practice insight.

The Mentoring program also goes beyond MS1 student – faculty mentoring. Other programs include having one-on-one lunch with a faculty mentor in their office to see how first hand medicine is practiced and panel discussions involving insight into specialty fields.

Please contact Mrs. Dionne Davis-Lowe, the Mentoring and Alumni Career Program Coordinator at (718)270-7593 or dionne.davis@downstate.edu, if you have any questions or would like additional information.


Presidential Inauguration Ceremony 2017

“If you want to go fast, go alone, if you want to go far, go together.”


This past Friday, 9/15/2017, marked the beginning of a new era in SUNY Downstate history. Dr. Wayne J. Riley was officially inaugurated as the new President of State University of New York Downstate by SUNY Board Chairman Carl H. McCall
and SUNY Chancellor Kristina M. Johnson.

Notable speakers all expressed the a similar sentiment, Dr. Riley will make an outstanding President and his past experiences have provided him with the tools necessary to succeed in his new role.

“Given his unlimited talent and experience, Dr. Riley is the person to lead this transition”- H. Carl McCall on political climate transitions in Washington and the United States.

“You can not get anything better than a great, transparent community builder” – Chancellor Johnson on Dr. Riley’s character.

“Dr.Riley’s countless leadership experiences and skills have prepared him to excel in this new role” – Dr. Louis W. Sullivan

Perfection is not the goal, excellence is the goal, Dr. Wayne J. Riley set the tone for his term during his inaugural address. He exuded great pride in taking on this new role and stated Downstate is “the academic health science center of the American Dream.”

The Alumni Association congratulates President Riley on his inauguration.


Speakers included:

-SUNY Board Chairman Carl H. McCall
-SUNY Chancellor Kristina M. Johnson
-Eric L. Adams, Brooklyn Borough President
-Dr. Samuel L. Stanley, Jr., President Stony Brook University
-Rev. Dr. Calvin O. Butts, President, SUNY Old Westbury
-Dr. Mark G. Stewart, Dean, Downstate School of Graduate Studies
-Dr. Rauno O. Jok, Presiding President, Downstate Faculty and Staff Assembly
-Abhimanyu Amarnani, President Downstate’s University Council
-Dr. Darilyn V. Moyer, President, American College of Physicians
– Dr. Darilyn V. Moyer, Executive Vice President an CEO, American College of Physicians
-The Honorable Dr. Louis W. Sullivan,Former Secretary of U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and President Emeritus, Morehouse School of Medicine


IMG_4234 (1)IMG_4249IMG_4272IMG_4223IMG_4225

SUNY Downstate News September 2017

Presidential Inauguration Ceremony: The Presidential Inauguration Ceremony for Wayne J. Riley, MD, MPH, MBA, MACP is on September 15, 2017 at 10:00 P.M., in the Alumni Auditorium.

White Coat Ceremony: On August 10th, our 23rd Annual White Coat Ceremony was head. The event was sponsored by the Arnold P. Gold Foundation and the Alumni Association. The newly oriented 195 first year medical students recited the Hippocratic Oath for the first time to mark the occasion. To view photos of the event, please visit our Facebook Page.

Robert F. Furchgott Annual Visiting Professor Lecture: Nobel Laureate Dr. Eric Kandel: “Topic: “The Biology of Memory and Age-Related Memory Loss”
Dr. Kandel is University Professor at Columbia; Kavli Professor and Director, Kavli Institute for Brain Science; Co-Director, Mortimer B. Zuckerman Mind Brain Behavior Institute; and an Investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. To read more on Dr. Kandel visit our Blog.


                                            SUNY Downstate Announcements:

– Dr. Anika Daniels-Osaze named a recipient of Insight Into Diversity magazine’s 2017 Inspiring Leaders in STEM Award. Dr. Daniels-Osaze is the Director of Diversity Education and Research at SUNY Downstate.

 

– Lorraine A. Sanassi, DHSc, PA-C, named Physician Assistant Educator of the Year by the New York State Society of Physician Assistants. Dr. Sanassi was recognized as a Presidential Honoree by the Society and as an exemplary educator, advisor, and mentor for PA students. She is an Assistant Professor of the PA program here at Downstate. She also serves as the PA Coordinator at the Special Treatment and Research (STAR) Program.

– Downstate Hosts community Health Fair at the Family Health Center at Lefferts. Alumna Dr. Marcia Edmond- Bucknor and The staff at Lefferts provided screenings to community members. Our Downstate colleagues staffed a table to educate the community on maternal, infant health, and breast health

– Judith H. LaRosa, PhD, RN, succeeds Pascal J. Imperato, MD, MPH&TM, MACP, as the Interim Dean of the School of Public Health (SPH). Dr. Imperato assumes a new role as Senior Vice President of Academic Affairs.


SUNY Downstate Job Postings:

APEX Therapeutic Services are hiring for the Upcoming School Year (2017-2018). Apex Therapeutic services is seeking full-time and part-time Occupational Therapist (OTRL) to work for The Department of Education. If you are interested or would like more information, please contact Micaella Flores (Healthcare Recruitment Manager). Office (516)472-7002, Mobile (917)363-3853, or Email: Mflores@apexcare.net
Salary: $70.00 to $76 /hour

 

Your Independent Alumni Association

This past week, one of our residents came into the Alumni Association office to discuss setting up an endowed scholarship in memory of a resident who passed away unexpectedly this past May. This resident is also a graduate of the College of Medicine from SUNY Downstate.

As we discussed her desire to set up this scholarship, she talked about how important it was for her to have this scholarship benefit students and not have the funds spent on supporting the school or the hospital. In my three years as your Executive Director, this sentiment has been repeated on a regular basis. It was a wonderful reminder of why the Alumni Association for the College of Medicine at SUNY Downstate was incorporated.

In the 1880’s, long before there was a SUNY System, the graduates of the medical school in Brooklyn wanted to establish an Association that specifically supported students and student needs without the influence of the medical school or the medical school administration. These physicians banded together to form the Alumni Association for the College of Medicine at SUNY Downstate. They each paid dues to create a pool of money to operate the organization and on top of that, made some donations to fund student needs.

In 2017, our Association, and the Alumni Fund continue to be separate legal entities from SUNY Downstate. Although our contract with the SUNY system dictates that all of our projects and programs must benefit SUNY Downstate, EVERY one of our funding decisions is made by our Board of Managers and Board of Trustees. These two boards have one seat for the President of SUNY Downstate, but every other seat is held by a graduate of the College of Medicine. These alumni dedicate their time and energy to make sure that every dollar that we grant out from your generous donations and dues payments goes directly to support students.

Our Board of Managers is an elected body of College of Medicine graduates who organize and manage the annual Homecoming and Reunion (May 4-6. 2018 at the Marriot Brooklyn Bridge), the Alumni Today Magazine (Editor Constance Shames MD ’63), Alumni Events, our email newsletters, and our social media. The Board of Trustees consists of alumni of the College of Medicine who have served at least one term on the Board of Managers. They are the voting body that determines any and all grants that are given to our medical students including scholarships, travel grants, event and club support, research support, and other requests to support student needs.

Thank you for your continued donations and dues payments. They allow us to provide hundreds of thousands of dollars in scholarships each year to our medical students, fund summer and full year student research projects, reimburse student travel to conferences where they are presenting papers, and purchase white coats and a senior class gift for each of our medical students.

This continuing legal separation (137 years ago) from SUNY Downstate allows us to do what you would do as an alumnus/a with the donations instead of being influenced by the needs of the hospital or medical school. Students first and students always. That is why we are here as an alumni association.

First Year Student Profile – Ana Maria Lopez

This month’s special edition student profile is of first year medical student Ana Maria Lopez, class of 2021. In this profile she included her dog, Pancake Lopez, who is accompanying her on her journey to becoming a doctor. Ana Maria completed her undergraduate education The City College of New York.

Hometown: Valley Stream, Long Island and Buffalo, NY

 Potential specialty: Cardiology ❤

What inspired you to study medicine? I have an extreme love for the biological sciences. I also desire to help and potentially inspire people through my profession. What could be a better choice?

How is your family handling the fact that you’re in med school now? They are overly thrilled and amazingly supportive. Pancake: Grandma takes care of me when Mommy has it super busy.

How did you choose Downstate? I did a few summer programs at Downstate during my undergraduate career and fell in love with the school.  Pancake: I was born in Brooklyn, so I figured I’d return.

How does it feel to actually start med school? It feels like a huge weight has been lifted while simultaneously a larger weight has been added! But seriously, I feel so super blessed and excited to finally be here. Pancake: I don’t know what Mom is stressed about. I am having a wonderfully stress free time. I’m happy I get to see so many people on my walks. Also, I get to sleep when we study!

First Year Medical Students iPad Giveaway! 2017

After much anticipation, first year Medical Students, MS1, came to the Alumni Association office filled will jubilation to pick up their iPads. The 194 iPads were donated by an anonymous alumnus donor who wanted to provide students with another resource to succeed during their time in Medical School. As expected, students responded with gratitude and a multitude of different reasons why this generous gift meant so much to them.

From financial reasons to differing types of learners, below are testimonials from students on the utility of the donation:

“I thought about purchasing an iPad for the longest time but couldn’t due to financial reasons.” – Hermione Gaw

“I can be slow at learning sometimes and visual aids are very useful to me …I hope you know that you aren’t just donating iPad to a “class,” but to individuals people who have their own unique reasons for cherishing this gift.” – Rebecca Walton

“I am already using this iPad mini to organize myself, make Anki flashcards, and observe anatomical structures with the many amazing apps available.” – Kelila Kahane”

“I can imagine a multitude of ways your gift will aid in our studies, from now as we delve into learning about anatomy, to have a handy reference on our future rotations.” – Swetha Mummini


The connection to SUNY Downstate and its vast Alumni Network has already begun to take root:

“I am also touched by what this gift represents – the continuity of the Downstate College of Medicine and that alumni still feel connected and invested in the college. I will keep that in mind so that one day I too can give back.” – Kelila Kahane

“I hope that you continue to be prosperous in your endeavors, and I promise to take the baton and pass it on at every stage of my learning experience and career.”  – Amarachi Uwaga

“I am proud to be a part of SUNY Downstate, especially knowing that it has a great alumni network and wonderful alumni.” – Johnny Wai Ming Tang


One student even looks forward to what this donation can contribute to in her future medical career:

 “While I know my mind may change, I currently plan to go into Cardiology and contribute to society from that. I hope to one day work in an underserved area and, when financially stable enough, to open my own clinic in order to build stronger bonds with my patients and provide them with greater one to one care. I also want to one day travel to the Dominican Republic and provide free basic healthcare to those families living in the countryside and impoverished areas of the country.” – Ana Maria Lopez

IMG_0031.JPG

IMG_0032.JPG

IMG_1638.JPG

 

IMG_1646.JPG

IMG_1649.JPG

IMG_1650.JPG

 

 

 

SUNY Downstate News August 2017

August 1-7
World Breastfeeding Week!


SUNY Downstate Announcement
: Rainer W. G. Gruessner, MD, FACS, FICS, has been named Chair of surgery and Clarence & Mary Dennis Professor of Surgery at SUNY Downstate Medical Center. The announcement was made by Carlos N. Pato, MD, Dean of the College of Medicine at SUNY Downstate. “Dr. Gruessner is a nationally renowned surgeon and clinical innovator, a prolific academic, a committed educator, and a successful and experienced department chair, having most recently served as chair of surgery at the University of Arizona and later as chief of transplantation at SUNY Upstate Medical University.”

SUNY Downstate Health Fair: For health screenings for blood pressure, sugar test, cholesterol, HIV/AIDS, stroke screening, breast education and more. The Health Fair will be held at Family Health Services at 840 Lefferts Avenue from 10:00 A.M to 4:00 P.M on August 19, 2017.

Ribbon Cutting Ceremony: President Wayne J. Riley will participate in a formal ribbon cutting ceremony and reception to mark the opening of the new Bone and Joint Center, which will expand Downstate’s capacity to provide advanced care for common and complex musculoskeletal disorders. The event is August 23, 2017 at 10:00 A.M., at University Orthopedic Associates New Bone and Joint Center, 760 Parkside Avenue.

Innovations in Medicine:
Downstate prides itself on innovations in medicine and healthcare to provide patients with the best care possible. Below is examples of the exceptional and advances Downstate had been making in healthcare:

– Professor of Medicine at SUNY Downstate Medical Center, Dr. Edward Quadros, created the Folate Receptor Antibody Test (FRAT™) to detect folate receptor antibodies. “The development of FRATTM could well turn out to be a seminal work that will improve the lives of many people, especially children and pregnant women,” said Boas Gonen, president and CEO of Iliad Neurosciences. “The test is essential for the diagnosis of cerebral folate deficiency, and is extremely useful in identifying patients with autism spectrum disorders, schizophrenia, and major depression who could benefit from high-dose folinic acid therapy.” To read more of Dr. Quadros’s work click here.

– Fogarty International Center, supporting the National Institutes of Health, has issued seven new awards through its HIV Research Training Program to build HIV research capacity at institutions in low- and middle-income countries. This round of grants, expected to total $8.1 million over five years, will train researchers in Mozambique, the Philippines, Rwanda, South Africa, Ukraine and Zambia. In Ukraine, SUNY Downstate Medical Center, led by Principal Investigator Dr. Jack Dehovitz, will help to train local investigators to conduct implementation science research to identify best practices for managing new HIV infections.

– SUNY Downstate researchers Drs. Stephen L. Macknik and Susana Martinez-Conde received an award from The National Science Foundation to study restoring vision. “With their award, Stephen L. Macknik, PhD, and Susana Martinez-Conde, PhD, both professors of ophthalmology, neurology, and physiology and pharmacology at SUNY Downstate, will seek to restore vision by genetically modifying neurons in the brain and then stimulating them with light, a method called optogenetics.” To read more on their research click here

Class Notes: August 2017

Class Notes:

Irwin Berkowitz, MD’ 72
After 41+ years at Chestnut Ridge Pediatrics, I have called it quits. I have hung up my proverbial cleats. Among my accomplishments, aside from providing attentive, excellent patient care, I have been chosen by Castle-Connelly as a “Top Doc”, elected as chairman of the Department of Pediatrics at the Valley Hospital, Ridgewood, N.J. and published a terrific book “Instructions Not Included, a pediatrician prescription for raising the best kid on the block(available at Amazon). I am living with my wife of 43 years, Kathleen, and plan to do more of the things I enjoy but didn’t have the time or energy to pursue.

David Klein, MD’75
Dr. Klein has been awarded the Harold S. Strasser, M.D., Good Samaritan Award. “The 1983 House of Delegates established this award to be given annually from nominations submitted by county medical societies, FMA recognized specialty groups and hospital medical staff.  Individual physicians and/or groups of physicians qualify for the Harold S. Strasser, M.D., Good Samaritan Award.  The recipient of this award demonstrates love and compassion for their fellow man, and displays outstanding leadership.” He will be recognized at the 2017 Annual Meeting, held August 4-6, 2017 at the Loew Sapphire Halls Resort in Orlando, FL.

Kristina Wittig, MD’08
Listen to Alumna Kristina Wittig, MD’ 08,  reflecting on her journey to becoming surgeon she is today.”Now a urologic surgeon and assistant clinical professor of surgery at City of Hope Santa Clarita and Antelope Valley, Wittig noted she loves that her specialty allows her to cultivate personal relationships with her patients while still acting as their surgeon.”

In Memoriam:
Christopher Lopresto, MD’90 – Passed away earlier this year.


Stay in touch with SUNY Downstate alumni!
Make sure we have your correct address and email, here.

new-logo

Building Brooklyn’s Future on the Waterfront

 

kevin wright.png

 

Inside the workspace of one of BioBAT’s anchor tenants, the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative (IAVI) 

 

2.22.17 BioBAT.jpg

“When I visited the BioBat incubator in March, I saw future of our economy unfolding. Tomorrow’s jobs and opportunities depend on technological innovation, and BioBat provides the space and support needed to ignite that spark. Through this kind of partnership between government, the private sector and academia, we will foster the next generation of entrepreneurs and industry leaders.”​-New York Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul

SUNY Downstate Medical Center’s commitment to research and education goes beyond the Downstate campus, including all the way to the Brooklyn harbor, where its venture BioBAT at the Brooklyn Army Terminal is working to strengthen the city’s scientific community.

Space is always a pressing concern for NYC’s researchers. Prior to BioBAT, finding affordable locations within easy reach of the city’s academic and financial centers was a challenge. Through the creation of affordable wet lab and office space at the Brooklyn Army Terminal, BioBAT has expanded the options for scientific firms seeking to operate in the city.

BioBAT stands six miles from the Downstate campus and Downstate’s Biotechnology Incubator, where two of BioBAT’s anchor tenants got their start. BioBAT tenants can take advantage of the partnership with SUNY Downstate, granting access to the school’s library, research personnel, and other resources.

An educated workforce and a culture of entrepreneurship benefit not just the city’s researchers, but New York as a whole. SUNY Downstate, Brooklyn’s only academic medical center, appreciates the importance of workforce development. The school has fielded initiatives such as biotechnology job-training programs in collaboration with Hunter College, and entrepreneurship programs for startup founders.

Downstate’s Dr. Eva Cramer, BioBAT and the incubator’s founder, has been a leading force in these workforce development efforts. BioBAT has launched its own initiative to create a STEM career pipeline and develop a 21st century working waterfront in Brooklyn. Among the initiative’s cornerstones is a series of extracurricular STEM educational programs which will inspire and engage students of all ages. The center is seeking sponsors and volunteers, and has enlisted SUNY Downstate’s support. Volunteer graduate students from SUNY Downstate’s School of Graduate Studies are guiding elementary through high school students in a fun-filled science summer program.

Since their inception, these ventures have received government support. SUNY Downstate President Dr. Wayne J. Riley said, “When I came to Downstate in April, I met with Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams and shared my appreciation for his strong support of our biotechnology initiatives, including the Biotech Incubator and BioBAT facilities, and for our pipeline programs.”

These ventures are helping to transform Brooklyn and the city as a whole into a global science and technology hub. Thanks to Downstate’s and BioBAT’s initiatives, researchers from every corner of the world will be able to find space, resources, personnel, and a thriving startup community at their fingertips. Under Dr. Riley’s leadership the borough can become as much of a magnet for scientific and commercial talent as SUNY Downstate is for outstanding students. SUNY Downstate’s students come from all over the world, and its alumni go just as far afield. But the best place to take part in the future of innovation may be back in Brooklyn.

Visit BioBAT and the Biotechnology Incubator on the web at http://biobat.nyc/ and http://research.downstate.edu/biotech/abi.htm