2011 - Archive


December 2011

Fay and Roy Whitney Establish Endowed Fund

Ralph “Roy” Whitney, Jr. and Fay Wadsworth Whitney

Wyoming residents, Fay Wadsworth Whitney ’60, ’61N, PhD, RN, FAAN and Ralph “Roy” Whitney, Jr. ’57, ’73S (MBA), have given the School of Nursing inspirational momentum with a gift of $1 million. The Whitneys’ gift will establish the Ralph R. and Fay Wadsworth Whitney Endowed Fund, which will provide scholarships, fellowships, and grants to students in nurse practitioner or more advanced degree programs who have the desire to collaborate in research or clinical settings.

“Roy and I believe very strongly in helping students achieve their goals,” says Fay. “As I look back on my own professional experience, one of the things I’ve always been passionate about is building bridges among and between health care providers. . . . Our hope is that our gift may encourage other alumni to support the School in a similar way.”

School of Nursing Interim Dean Kathy H. Rideout explains that the gift supports the School’s critical goal to build a stronger endowment and provide scholarship assistance to students without straining the operating budget. “We are profoundly grateful,” says Rideout. “I look forward to sharing with Fay and Roy, the success stories of the first Whitney scholars to benefit from their generosity.”

Fay, who celebrated her 50th class reunion at the School of Nursing in 2010, recently accepted the role of co-chair for the School’s campaign, which is part of The Meliora Challenge, with Board of Trustees member Roger B. Friedlander ’56, who also chairs the School’s National Council.

“The Whitneys have been great friends and wise counselors for the University for many years,” said University President Joel Seligman. “They are dedicated to supporting exceptional students toward meaningful careers in the nursing profession and their gift is an inspiring start for the School of Nursing’s comprehensive campaign moving forward.”

Since graduating, Fay has led a highly regarded career as a clinician, teacher, and researcher. She has received more than $1 million in research grants and co-authored two books. She has also earned numerous awards along the way, including the School of Nursing Distinguished Alumna Award. Roy, a Dean's Medal recipient, is chairman emeritus of Hammond, Kennedy, Whitney & Company, Inc., one of the nation’s oldest and most successful private equity firms.

The Whitneys have always remained closely connected to their alma mater. Roy is a long-time member of the University Board of Trustees and serves on the Simon School National Council and the Simon School Executive Advisory Committee. Fay served on the Dean’s Advisory Council for the School of Nursing from 2002 to 2008. She is an inaugural member of the School of Nursing’s National Council and a member of the Eleanor Hall Bequest Society. Both are Charter Members of the George Eastman Circle.

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Values and Action

As we approach the close of the calendar year, and begin to celebrate the holidays with those closest to us, I want to extend my warmest of wishes for a happy and healthy year to you and yours.

Thanks to the hard work we have all done together, our progress and enthusiasm leading into 2012 is tremendous. Since the beginning of this year, we have seen a remarkable outpouring of support from the University community. For example, we have received 39 commitments of $1 million or more this year. We are incredibly thankful for the momentum they produced leading into our recent public Campaign kickoff.

The Campaign is not only about reaching our goal of $1.2 billion by 2016. It is also about building a larger, distinguished national community of alumni, community leaders, parents, friends, students, and all who share an incredible pride in and excitement about Rochester.

The Meliora Challenge has come together through the support and guidance of the University’s community of leaders. I am thankful for our Trustees, led by Ed Hajim, the leadership of our Campaign Cabinet, led by Rich Handler and Cathy Minehan, the vision of President Seligman and his Cabinet, and all of the incredible people who are making an impact on the University daily. 

As we look ahead to 2012, we need to build on our momentum. Part of this drive includes launching targeted campaigns for specific schools and units, such as the James P. Wilmot Cancer Center and the Memorial Art Gallery. We will also host regional campaign kickoffs in San Francisco, Chicago and Boston. During this exciting time, we must always remain attuned to the opportunities each of us has to reach out to our own network, engage additional George Eastman Circle members, and more actively invite a friend or colleague to become involved.

Together, we are doing no less than strengthening the University as we help tackle some of society’s most pressing and difficult challenges. Within our University, change begins, discoveries are made, children are healed, great human expression is created, and the leaders of tomorrow initiate their own important journeys.

Wishing you the best of the season and a Happy New Year!



James D. Thompson
Senior Vice President
Chief Advancement Officer

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Installation of the
Robert J. Joynt Professor
in the Department of Neurology

Robert Joynt, Karl Kieburtz ’85M (MD), ’85M (MPH), and David Butler.

“In recognizing Bob, we truly recognize a legend. Bob is an individual who has a gift for friendship, for recruitment, and for building a school,” opened President Seligman at the installation ceremony for Karl D. Kieburtz ’85M (MD), ’85M (MPH) as the Robert J. Joynt Professor in the Department of Neurology. Dr. Joynt is a professor of neurology, neurobiology, and anatomy, and was named a Distinguished University Professor by the Board of Trustees. He is internationally recognized for his leadership in neurological teaching, practice, and research.

The Robert J. Joynt Professorship was created in honor of Dr. Joynt with support from more than 150 donors, including a capstone gift from the Butler family. David Butler’s late wife, Janet, was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease when she was 46 years old. From 1997 until 2004, Janet participated in research trials as a part of her treatment at the University of Rochester Medical Center, with the belief that supporting scientific research was the best way she could contribute to advancements in treatment. David explained that “genuine, unconditional kindness and respect” were the foundations of every encounter she had with each physician and nurse who cared for her.

That kindness inspired the Butler family to support patient-centered research at the Medical Center by making the capstone gift, creating the professorship. The Robert J. Joynt Professorship supports an outstanding individual in the neurology department for the purpose of research aimed at patient-oriented experimental therapeutics of neurodegenerative disorders, such as Parkinson’s disease, and the study of the aging human brain.

“Work hard, and when it comes to the patient, you can’t always be right, but you can always be kind,” said Dr. Joynt as he shared his “secrets to success” with a crowd of 150 friends, colleagues, and supporters. But as has been the case throughout his lifetime, it was his humor and warm heart that left the greatest impression.

Dr. Joynt’s impact was never lost on Bradford C. Berk ’81M (MD), ’81M (PhD), University senior vice president for health sciences and CEO of the University of Rochester Medical Center. Echoing President Seligman’s opening sentiments, Dr. Berk said, “People who Bob has brought to the University have been the foundation of the neurology department and the University. If anyone was a paternal figure for this Medical Center, it was Bob.”

Dr. Joynt was proud and honored to have a former student of his become the inaugural Robert J. Joynt Professor—and in the end, it was Dr. Kieburtz who was truly humbled. “I know what Bob has done, and it makes me want to be a better man in three areas,” said Dr. Kieburtz in his closing remarks. He continued by explaining that those areas are: "service to the University and profession; humility; and using humor to care for patients and their families."

Endowed professorships support and honor current faculty and ensure that research continues in perpetuity. “Bob Joynt’s name will be hallowed in these halls as long as there is a School of Medicine at the University of Rochester,” proclaimed President Seligman. “At the risk of going out on a limb―that is going to be a long, long time.”

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Highlights from 2011:
A Year of Making History

George Eastman Circle Nears 2,000: At the close of 2010, the George Eastman Circle had surpassed 1,600 members. In only a year’s time, it now sits on the brink of 2,000. Every new membership represents a commitment to a vision originally held by George Eastman, himself. Unrestricted annual giving through the George Eastman Circle enables members to support their passions. This is a milestone that everyone can be proud of as we pursue the goal of $130 million for the Annual Fund as part of the $1.2 billion goal of The Meliora Challenge.

Click here to make a year-end gift and become a member today!   

Renowned soprano, Renée Fleming ’83E (MM), ’11E (HNR), performed in a benefit concert with the Eastman Philharmonia Orchestra.

Renée Fleming ’83E (MM), ’11E (HNR) Benefit Concert: The beloved soprano returned to the Eastman School of Music, her alma mater, for a concert benefiting the Renée Fleming Endowed Scholarship Fund at the Eastman School of Music. This fund supports students in the voice and opera program. Under the direction of Neil Varon and the Joan and Martin Messinger Dean of the Eastman School of Music, Douglas Lowry, the Eastman Philharmonia provided the music to accompany Fleming’s award-winning voice. The program spanned a variety of styles, and concluded with an encore from La Traviata where Fleming was joined by three Eastman student tenors.


New York Times columnist David Brooks speaks to members of the George Eastman Circle at the New York City dinner in February.

NYC George Eastman Circle Dinner: February 10 was a celebration of milestones for the George Eastman Circle. Hundreds of alumni and friends dined at The Pierre in New York City to celebrate the leadership annual giving society’s fifth year. New York Times columnist David Brooks provided a wonderful keynote address on a night that was highlighted by the announcement of the new Associate Member level exclusively for recent graduates. This membership level adds a new dimension to the George Eastman Circle by encouraging young leaders to earn a place in University history for their dedication to and belief in Rochester’s future. 


Mary Beth McCann ’89N, Dr. Robert McCann, Mary Berk, Dr. Brad Berk ’81M (MD), ’81M (PhD), Ted Kennedy, Jr., and Mark Eidlin at the Highland Hospital Gala in March.

Highland Hospital Gala: The Hyatt Regency was host to a sold-out gala of more than 500 advocates of Highland Hospital on March 26. Proceeds from the event went to supporting the Hospital’s new neuromedicine unit. Ted Kennedy Jr., the event’s keynote speaker, praised the Hospital’s foresight in developing this unit, highlighting the importance of an integrated approach when providing care to patients with the greatest needs.


“Community of leaders” at the Campaign Planning Retreat in March.

Campaign Planning Retreat: More than 200 Campaign volunteers, Board, academic, and administrative leaders joined together for a historic first-time meeting of the University’s “community of leaders.” In what was an unprecedented retreat, more than 20 roundtable discussions were held to sharpen Campaign themes leading up to the public launch of The Meliora Challenge. Volunteers provided invaluable vision, strategy, creativity, discipline, and collaboration that helped to build a successful Campaign, and remain a key to greatness in future University endeavors. Since the retreat, the impact of volunteers and the Campaign's momentum has continued to build as the growing community of leaders enables the University to become ever better.


Nancy Yanes-Hoffman ’50, ’68 (MA) and Marvin Hoffman ’45, ’50M (Res) with the Dr. Marvin J. Hoffman Medical School Fund Scholars (l to r) Elise Meoli ’11M (MD), Margaret Compton, Brian Pisula, Tina Jensen, and Reija Matheson at the 2011 Endowed Scholarship Dinner.

2nd Annual Endowed Scholarship Dinner: The University held its second annual endowed scholarship dinner on April 14 in the M&T Ballroom at the Memorial Art Gallery. The University-wide event recognizes the generous donors of endowed scholarships and their talented student beneficiaries, while emphasizing the growing importance of endowed scholarships. Underscoring this message were remarks and performances by recipients, bringing to life the opportunities and experiences their scholarships have given them.


Robert Novy-Marx, New Jersey Governor Christopher Christie, and Peter Simon ’08S (HNR) at the Simon School’s second annual conference, highlighting and responding to key issues facing corporations today.

Simon NYC Conference: “Emerging Risks to America’s Financial Stability” was the theme of Simon’s second annual conference. Notable presenters included New Jersey Governor Christopher Christie and Simon faculty member Robert Novy-Marx discussing unfunded pension liabilities, and Steve Levitt, author of the bestsellers Freakonomics and Superfreakonomics. Featured panel discussions included alumni Jay Benet ’76S (MBA), vice chairman and CFO of The Travelers Companies, Inc., and Robert Khuzami ’79, director of the Division of Enforcement for the Securities and Exchange Commission. Peter G. Peterson ’94S (HNR), founder and chairman of the Peter G. Peterson Foundation was awarded the inaugural “Executive of the Year Award.”


Marianne Bittner, Dick Bell, Sue and Bob Kessler at the 12th annual James P. Wilmot Cancer Center Discovery Ball.

12th Annual Discovery Ball: The James P. Wilmot Cancer Center hosted 700 guests at the Robert B. Wegman Conference Facility on May 21. The event raised $651,995 and presented the Inspiration Award to Richard “Dick” T. Bell for the compassionate support he has shown to cancer patients and the professorship he established in honor of his radiation oncologist, Dr. Yuhchyau Chen.

To view the video of Dick Bell’s story, click here.


Guests enjoy the ambience of the Memorial Art Gallery at the 44th Annual Garden Party.

44th Annual Garden Party: President Seligman’s keynote address, “The University and the Community,” provided 600 guests at the Memorial Art Gallery in early June, an inspiring look back at the University’s 1924 campaign. More than 40 students and faculty were highlighted for their achievements and recognition by national and international organizations, as President Seligman painted a picture of the University’s strength.

Click here to read President Seligman's remarks.

Regional Cabinets Convene: The Regional Cabinets in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston, and Chicago are now joined by Washington, D.C., Delaware Valley, Westchester-Fairfield Counties, and New York “New Leaders” in the effort to strengthen the University presence throughout the country. The four newest Cabinets held their inaugural operational meetings, developing strategies to maximize local University of Rochester visibility and engagement. Over the course of the year, Cabinet members have meaningful interactions with University leaders through regional meetings and dinners. The Regional Cabinets are comprised of more than 100 alumni and parents and represent all schools and units while playing a critical role in regional engagement and Campaign efforts.

For a photo gallery of the new Regional Cabinets, click here.


Sara DeLamater Scotto ’96 of West Granby, CT poses on the Eastman Quad meridian with children (l to r) Jacob, (7), Lucas, (5), and Kathryn, (9), during University of Rochester's Meliora Weekend, October 21, 2011.

Meliora Week: More than 10,000 people were welcomed to University campuses and events throughout Meliora Week this past October. Meliora Weekend and the opening of Extreme Materials 2 at the Memorial Art Gallery began the celebrations that continued through the week leading up to the Golisano Children's Hospital Gala.

Meliora Weekend broke records for both attendance and Reunion class giving. More than 9,200 alumni, students, parents, faculty, friends, and staff members enjoyed 230 programs over the course of four days this past October. President Bill Clinton provided an inspiring keynote address to a standing-room-only crowd in Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre­ while thousands of people watched via simulcast. Student groups performed throughout the weekend, and the University hosted several hot topic panel discussions such as The Rochester Forum on Alzheimer’s research and treatment. The combined Presidential Symposium―Miller’s Court with moderator Arthur Miller ’56, ’08 (LLD), featured supreme and district court justices discussing “The Meaning of the Constitution.”


The public phase of the Campaign was launched on Friday, October 21, when President Seligman announced the $1.2 billion goal of The Meliora Challenge.

Campaign Kickoff: Rochester spent two days celebrating the launch of The Meliora Challenge: The Campaign for the University of Rochester. It began with President Seligman formally announcing the Campaign goal of $1.2 billion to more than 700 dinner guests on Friday, October 21. The importance of the Campaign was framed by speakers including Ed Hajim ’58, Vice President Paul Burgett ’68E, ’72E (MA), ’76E (PhD), and Campaign Co-Chair Rich Handler ’83, as well as moving testimonials from two students, a faculty member, and a doctor and patient. On Saturday, the entire University community came together for A Celebration of Meliora, an event that could not have been more aptly named. More than 2,000 alumni, parents, students, faculty, guests, and staff took part in the inspirational and high-energy gala celebration whose highlights captured the spirit of both the night and the Campaign. Student groups from across the University performed throughout the evening; attendees engaged in conversation areas and interactive exhibits based on the four “pillars” of the University’s mission; and at 10:30 p.m., Library Road became a viewing site for a spectacular fireworks display over the Genesee River.

To learn more about The Meliora Challenge, click here.

2011 Advancement Awards: Rochester alumni and friends were honored this fall by their respective schools for exemplifying the University’s mission to Learn, Discover, Heal, Create—and make the world ever better.

Click here to see photos of the 2011 advancement award recipients.

Tom Golisano speaks to more than 930 attendees at the 24th annual Wonderland-themed Golisano Children’s Hospital Gala.

Golisano Children’s Hospital Campaign Launch: On October 29, the Golisano Children’s Hospital announced its $100 million campaign during the 24th annual Golisano Children’s Hospital Gala at the Rochester Riverside Convention Center. Including some major gift commitments prior to the event, $1.3 million was raised at the Alice in Wonderland-themed event. In addition to enabling the hospital to attract and retain more world-class pediatric scientists, clinicians, and educators, the campaign will help fund the largest capital project in University history—a new, state-of-the-art Golisano Children’s Hospital building.


Erich Postler, David Klein, and Brad Berk ’81M (MD), ’81M (PhD) at the 11th Annual Toast to Your Health Wine Auction benefiting the James P. Wilmot Cancer Center.

The 11th Annual Toast to Your Health Wine Auction: The perennial black-tie wine event was held on Saturday, November 12. Wine connoisseurs and supporters of the University of Rochester Medical Center gathered to bid on vintage and highly rated wines to benefit the James P. Wilmot Cancer Center. Thanks in part to a generous matching gift by University Trustee Danny Wegman and his wife, Stency, more than $950,000 went to the Linde Klein Fund for Head and Neck Cancer Research.

To view the video shown at the Toast to Your Health Wine Wine Auction, click here.

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Wishing you the happiest of holidays and a new year that enables everyone to Learn, Discover, Heal, Create—and make the world ever better.


November 2011

Meliora Weekend Makes History

Meliora Weekend 2011 provided a wonderful backdrop for the public launch of The Meliora Challenge: The Campaign for the University of Rochester, the most ambitious fundraising effort in our history and the first to encompass every area of the University. The weekend will long be remembered as a remarkable milestone in the chronicles of our University. 

We celebrated the launch of the Campaign over two nights, and showcased the priorities of the Campaign dramatically to nearly 3,000 guests. Both evenings were designed around the theme of the University’s new mission statement: Learn, Discover, Heal, Create—And Make the World Ever Better. Conversation areas with striking displays and interactive exhibits were structured around the four “pillars” of our mission and championed the University’s many accomplishments. They also gave guests an opportunity to personally engage with University researchers, students, and faculty, and to hear firsthand how the University will be “ever better” through the efforts of the Campaign.

The formal announcement of the Campaign took place on Friday, October 21, where Ed Hajim ’58, chair of the Board of Trustees, enthusiastically welcomed more than 700 dinner guests and led a program that culminated with President Seligman announcing the $1.2 billion goal of The Meliora Challenge. Highlights of Friday night included a history of University heroes by Vice President Paul Burgett ’68E, ’72E (MA), ’76E (PhD), personal remarks by Campaign Co-Chair Rich Handler ’83, and moving testimonials from two students, a faculty member, and a doctor and patient, exemplifying the University’s mission. The Eastman Symphony Orchestra debuted Semper Ad Meliora, a piece composed and conducted in honor of the occasion by Douglas Lowry, the Joan and Martin Messinger Dean of the Eastman School of Music. The rousing performance received a standing ovation.

President Seligman announced that the public phase of the Campaign starts with tremendous momentum, thanks to the vision and leadership of those who have already committed more than $759 million, 63 percent of the Campaign goal. His remarks revolved around two words that he described as “the two most important words in the English language”—Thank You. Gratitude was expressed to the community of supporters and friends who made this moment possible, with special acknowledgement to the Board of Trustees, the President’s Cabinet, Campaign leadership, including Campaign Co-Chairs Cathy Minehan ’68 and Rich Handler ’83, George Eastman Circle members, individual donors, faculty, staff, and students. 

President Seligman outlined the five overarching objectives for the Campaign: $225 million for student support, primarily through endowed scholarships and fellowships; $350 million for faculty support, including 80 fully endowed professorships; $375 million for priority projects and programmatic support within the schools and units; $130 million in unrestricted support through the Annual Fund and George Eastman Circle; and $120 million for campus renovations and new facilities. President Seligman acknowledged the bold aspirations of the Campaign, but encouraged optimism and confidence. “These aspirations truly aim high. We accept The Meliora Challenge … As scholars, teachers, clinicians, and performers we have the talent to move the world.”

On Saturday, October 22, the festivities of the Campaign launch continued with A Celebration of Meliora for the entire University community. This was one of the most extraordinary events in the 11-year history of Meliora Weekend. Performance groups from the School of Medicine and Dentistry, the Eastman School of Music, and Arts, Sciences and Engineering, provided a high-energy, inspirational environment and displayed the remarkable talents characteristic of so many across our entire University community. President Seligman and Board Chair Ed Hajim addressed more than 2,000 alumni, parents, students, faculty, guests, and staff, and gave thanks for the continued support, reiterated the Campaign goal and its significance, and encouraged everyone to enjoy and celebrate together as one University. The evening concluded with a spectacular fireworks display over the Genesee River. 

The University saw the participation of more than 9,200 attendees, making it the largest and most memorable Meliora Weekend ever. There were more than 200 events; faculty, administrators, and deans from across the University participated in panels, discussions, and other programs, and reunion dinners were held on and off campus. President Bill Clinton was the keynote speaker for this monumental occasion, and his moving and inspirational address drew more than 2,300 guests into a packed Kodak Hall and more than 3,000 to simulcast locations. Other notable events included the Combined Presidential Symposium—Miller’s Court and the Rochester Forum on Alzheimer’s disease. For more about the weekend’s events, view the photo gallery here.

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Values and Action

“Great is the road I climb, but the garland offered by an easier effort is not worth the gathering.”

This year’s Meliora Weekend was unlike any other. The more than 9,200 attendees—a record-breaking turnout—witnessed history in the making, firsthand.

On Friday, October 21, President Joel Seligman publically announced the first fully modern, and largest comprehensive Campaign in our University’s history. With a goal of $1.2 billion, the effort is ambitious and bold. But with the tremendous leadership of those who have already supported the Campaign, and the enthusiastic response of those in attendance who rallied around the University’s mission to be “ever better,” I have confidence that we will rise to The Meliora Challenge

The sense of excitement and momentum was just amazing throughout this remarkable weekend. President Bill Clinton delivered a thoughtful and inspiring keynote to a packed audience in the newly renovated Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre. Several thousand others watched the address via live simulcasts. The impact of the Campaign was evident by hearing from students, faculty, patients, and all of those whom we serve. It was also evident in the capital projects that include Raymond F. LeChase Hall, the Saunders Research Building, the expansion of the James P. Wilmot Cancer Center, Robert B. Goergen Hall for Biomedical Engineering and Optics, and many others. Enthusiasm has never been greater at reunions and all of the more than 200 events that make up the weekend.

We truly made this a “Meliora Week” by also launching a $100 million campaign for the Golisano Children’s Hospital on October 29, as the first of our school and unit campaigns. The Golisano Children’s Hospital campaign has been propelled by a $20 million lead gift from Rochester entrepreneur, and the Hospital’s namesake, B. Thomas Golisano. This campaign is part of The Meliora Challenge and includes the largest capital project at the University of Rochester to date. 

This was an extraordinary milestone in our collective efforts to celebrate and support the University we all treasure. I want to express my most heartfelt gratitude to everyone who helped to make this moment possible and such a tremendous start to our efforts. Over the coming years of the Campaign’s public phase, I look forward to partnering with you and sharing our aspirations with all of the members of our University community so that the news, excitement and passion continue to spread.

Together, as one, we embrace The Meliora Challenge. Thank you for your ongoing efforts to make the University and our world ever better. 



James D. Thompson
Senior Vice President
Chief Advancement Officer

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Gala Celebrates Golisano Children’s Hospital Campaign Launch

Tom Golisano speaks to more than 930 attendees at the 24th annual Wonderland-themed Golisano Children’s Hospital Gala.

A $100 million campaign for Golisano Children’s Hospital was launched on October 29 to build a new state-of-the-art, dedicated children’s hospital, and enable the hospital to attract and retain the world’s best pediatric biomedical scientists and educators.

The campaign, part of the University of Rochester Medical Center’s $650 million campaign and The Meliora Challenge, the University’s overall $1.2 billion Campaign, was announced during the 24th annual Golisano Children’s Hospital Gala at the Rochester Riverside Convention Center. The gala was an overwhelming success and raised $1.3 million for the campaign, which included some major gift commitments made prior to the event.

A key component of the campaign for Golisano Children's Hospital is a new home. Tom Golisano’s recent $20 million gift has bolstered plans to construct a six-story, 200,000 square–foot building. The hospital has nationally ranked and recognized programs, researchers, physicians, nurses and staff, but has lacked the ideal facilities to match these high caliber qualities.

Among the highlights of the new building are a 60-bed neonatal intensive care unit, 56 private rooms, pediatric intensive care and pediatric cardiac intensive care units, and pediatric radiology facilities. These upgrades are critical to bringing the hospital to new levels of excellence in the 21st century, but many of the improvements are focused on giving families increased privacy and greater comfort. This is the largest capital project in the history of the Medical Center and the University of Rochester.

The Golisano Children’s Hospital campaign will also focus on seven priority programs to improve the lives of children through clinical excellence, research and education. The seven areas are: Autism Spectrum Disorder (effective treatment and understanding of behavioral symptoms and their causes), Cancer (access to early phase clinical trials and enhanced quality of life), Cardiovascular Disease (research to find new ways to diagnose and treat childhood heart disease), Eating Disorders (sustain and enhance recognition, treatment and prevention services), Neonatology (specialized research and clinical programs in lung and brain injuries, two of the most serious injuries for premature infants), Supportive Care Team (deliver compassionate care to children and families), and Surgery (recruit, train, and retain talented pediatric surgeons and develop new facilities, operating rooms, and minimally invasive surgical techniques).

“We want to make what is ‘best’ today, ever better,” said the hospital’s Pediatrician-in-Chief and William H. Eilinger Chair of Pediatrics, Nina F. Schor, MD, PhD. “Just as our predecessors made the lives of children longer and healthier, you can ensure that our children, and their children, and their children’s children are the beneficiaries of ‘Medicine of the Highest Order.’”

Click here to see photos of the Golisano Children's Hospital Gala. 

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University Honors 2011 Alumni Award Recipients

Rochester’s alumni exemplify our mission to Learn, Discover, Heal, Create—And Make the World Ever Better. We honor our alumni with awards to recognize their outstanding accomplishments, service, leadership, and dedication to the University and their communities. This year, we are proud to honor alumni at multiple celebrations and continue to be inspired by the ways in which our honorees are making an impact on the world. We offer them our warmest congratulations and thanks for their commitment to being ever better.

Click here to see photos of the 2011 alumni award recipients. 

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Installation of Joan and Martin Messinger Deanship Celebrated at the Eastman School of Music

On September 14, Kilbourn Hall at the Eastman School of Music was a place of celebration. Family and friends joined Eastman faculty and members of the Rochester community to honor and commemorate the establishment of the Messinger Deanship. Dean Douglas Lowry was formally installed as the first Joan and Martin Messinger Dean of the Eastman School of Music.

After Bob Witmer, Jr. ’59, chairman emeritus of the Board of Trustees welcomed all who were in attendance, President Seligman underlined the importance of this type of gift. Endowed professorships and deanships are critically important to the University’s ability to attract and retain great scholars, bolstering one of its greatest assets—the faculty.

President Seligman acknowledged that the Messinger family has left an indelible mark on the University. Through their efforts, they have truly established a family legacy.

Rabbi Sarah Jo Messinger ’82 and Daryl Messinger accepted the dean’s medallion in honor of their parents and University benefactors, Marty Messinger ’49, who was unable to attend, and his late wife, Joan. Bob Witmer then conferred the medallion to Dean Lowry.

The ceremony was brought to a close with the beautiful music of the Grammy Award-winning, quartet-in-residence, the Ying Quartet, made up of Eastman alumni and faculty. Further congratulations and celebration took place in the Cominsky Promenade.

For more information about the Messinger Deanship, click here.

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Barry Florescue ’66 Delivers Keynote Address at Simon School Convocation

Barry Florescue ’66 delivered the keynote address to the William E. Simon Graduate School of Business Administration community at their convocation ceremony on September 22.

There were few better suited to deliver the address than Barry, a highly successful investor, accomplished entrepreneur, and former CEO and chairman of numerous prominent corporations. He is chairman of the board and president of BMD Management Company Inc., a privately owned business that manages more than 30 commercial real estate properties in Florida, Colorado, New York, and Utah. Barry is also a University Trustee, Charter Member of the George Eastman Circle, and serves on The Meliora Challenge Campaign Cabinet and the Simon School Executive Advisory Committee.

In his closing remarks, Barry recounted a philosopher’s quote that reads, “A smart man learns from his own mistakes and a wise man learns from the mistakes of others.” Barry added, “A wise student learns from the failures and successes so brilliantly taught here at the University of Rochester.”

A longtime benefactor of the University and the Simon School, Barry recently made a generous contribution to launch the revival of the University’s undergraduate business program. The Barry Florescue Undergraduate Business Degree Program is the result of a collaboration between the Simon School and the College and will closely mirror a program that existed when Florescue was a student.

Dean Mark Zupan and Varun Shah ’12S (MBA), president of the Graduate Business Council, led the 150 students in attendance in the signing of the Simon School Credo, a student-authored set of principles emphasizing the importance of integrity and ethics. After the ceremony, students, faculty and family enjoyed a reception in the Eisenberg Rotunda of Schlegel Hall. The occasion was topped off with a very heartfelt and celebratory dinner at the Genesee Valley Club with Barry’s family, the Seligmans, local trustees and other close friends from Florida and New York City.

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Dedication of the Gwen M. Greene Career and Internship Center

President Seligman, Gwen Greene ’65, John Greene and Ed Hajim ’58 celebrate the dedication of the Gwen M. Greene Career and Internship Center. 

On September 23, the University formally dedicated the Gwen M. Greene Career and Internship Center. Ed Hajim ’58, chair of the Board of Trustees, delivered the welcome, which was followed by remarks from President Seligman on the impact that Gwen Greene ’65 has had on the University. Dean Richard Feldman, Burt Nadler, the director of the Gwen M. Greene Career and Internship Center, and Erik Penney ’96 ’05S (MBA), also shared meaningful insights about Gwen and her contributions to the students, alumni and friends of the University. Many of Gwen’s former classmates and friends attended the celebration, as did all of her scholarship recipients. 

Gwen has always been an active member of the University community and tireless advocate for its students and alumni. In 1995, Gwen established the Gwen Meltzer Greene ’65 Endowed Scholarship to provide scholarships for students to attend the University, and in 2005, the University awarded her the James S. Armstrong Alumni Service Award for her significant contributions to undergraduate life on campus.

The students are the true beneficiaries of Gwen’s work, which was emphasized by President Seligman. “At some universities job placement essentially stops at graduation; at others maybe it goes on for three to six months; at our University it’s for all alumni, and this is an amazing comparative advantage.”

In addition to being vice president at JP Morgan Chase Securities, Gwen is a University Trustee, chair of the Board’s Student Affairs Committee, chair of the University’s National Annual Giving Program, and as a Charter Member, has been instrumental in helping to grow the George Eastman Circle, the University’s leadership annual giving society. Gwen also serves on The Meliora Challenge Campaign Cabinet.

The Gwen M. Greene Career and Internship Center will continue to enable students and alumni to further develop the skills they need to begin and sustain rewarding careers. This includes the Career and Internship Connections, New York Minute, and New York Recruiting programs.

“Gwen’s voice has become associated with an amazing person, and has continued to resonate as a supportive, clear, honest, and driven role model, mentor, and advocate,” said Nadler. “That voice is now a permanent fixture at the University.”

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Philip and Marilyn Wehrheim Professorship Installation

Philip Wehrheim, Marilyn Wehrheim ’61, ’82 (MS), and Craig T. Jordan, Ph.D.

On October 11, Craig T. Jordan, Ph.D. was installed as the Philip and Marilyn Wehrheim Professor. The installation ceremony was held at the Country Club of Rochester amongst family and friends of Philip Wehrheim and Marilyn Wehrheim ’61, ’82 (MS) and supporters of the James P. Wilmot Cancer Center. The evening was a celebration of their outstanding commitment and the lasting impact their generosity will have on cancer research and the University.

The Philip and Marilyn Wehrheim Professorship supports the work of Jordan, the director of hematological translational research for the Wilmot Cancer Center. He is a nationally recognized leader in cancer stem cell research and his laboratory focuses on understanding and eradicating those cells that give rise to cancer. Endowed professorships, a key priority of The Meliora Challenge, enable the University to compete successfully for world-renowned faculty, like Jordan.

Philip and Marilyn’s motivations for giving and the importance of their endowed gift were articulated by Philip during the ceremony. The Philip and Marilyn Wehrheim Professorship supports cancer research in perpetuity, ensuring generations of future researchers are able to continue translating discoveries in the laboratory into new therapies.

Jordan was honored to have been named the first Philip and Marilyn Wehrheim Professor, and never imagined that he would be able to meet the donors who support his research. This is a unique opportunity, yet one that is more common at the University of Rochester because of the direct engagement of the University’s supporters. The Wehrheims’ dedicated philanthropy has touched several Rochester area charities and foundations and assisted in the completion of the Wilmot Cancer Center in 2008. Their latest gift to the Wilmot Cancer Center—inspired by their friends who have fought battles with cancer and the cutting-edge research of Craig Jordan—further defines the legacy of Philip and Marilyn Wehrheim and their impact on Rochester’s future.

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