December 2013

A Meliora Message

It’s that nostalgic time of year again—the time when virtually everyone looks back at the events of the last 12 months. Perhaps it’s human nature. A way to mark the passage of time and catalog the year so it can be more easily recalled. 

We’ll look back at 2013 as the year we passed a remarkable Campaign milestone.

We’ll mark it as the year we celebrated a milestone anniversary for the Memorial Art Gallery, the birthday of Rettner Hall, and the continued growth of Golisano Children’s Hospital. 

And we’ll reminisce about it as the year that brought us perhaps the finest Meliora Weekend weather ever. 

Only time will tell how 2013 may ultimately settle in our minds. But, as it comes to a close, there is no doubt it has been a year we will look back on with tremendous pride. 

And a year that makes us look forward with optimism.


A Red-Letter Year

Special “mission cookies” helped the University celebrate its $1 billion milestone and its accomplishments in its pursuit to Learn, Discover, Heal, Create—and make the world ever better.

The Meliora Challenge going beyond $1 billion was the pinnacle moment in a year that was characterized by widespread leadership and philanthropy and an abundance of inspirational moments. Of course, this has been the case for many years, which is what has enabled the University to pass this milestone and enjoy an achievement that puts it in elite company. To see and read about some of the most inspirational moments in 2013, click here.

To see some of this year's top photos and stories from around the University, click here.

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The 2013 Campaign Honor Roll

Unprecedented campaigns are made successful by unprecedented support. Thus far, The Meliora Challenge has been defined by both. In total, the Campaign’s success is the product of more than 155,000 donors, from all 50 states and 78 different countries.

The Campaign has surpassed $1 billion thanks to this community, led by a group that has demonstrated extraordinary philanthropic leadership. These individuals and organizations have been recognized in the inaugural Campaign Honor Roll.

The Honor Roll includes those who have committed $50,000 or more between July 1, 2005 and June 30, 2013, with annotations identifying significant support of scholarships. The Honor Roll also includes a list of new endowed professorships that were established during this time period.

To read this year’s Honor Roll, click here.

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November 2013

A Meliora Message

A time for reflection. 

The last month brought a couple of events where it was particularly important to pause and reflect on the meaning of our efforts.

As the month began, we celebrated the life and work of Douglas Lowry. At the memorial event held in the renovated Kodak Hall—which Doug helped to make a reality—stories revolved around his love of music, poetry, and family. A selection of his compositions were performed, demonstrating his intellect and artistry, and he was remembered as a man who personally brought laughter and joy to many.

And as the month came to a close, we celebrated an historic milestone as The Meliora Challenge passed the $1 billion mark. It is a tremendous accomplishment, but reflection tells us that much remains to be done. There are still many deserving students who need the assistance of endowed scholarships and fellowships. There are still outstanding professors whose research and teaching would be encouraged from an endowed professorship. There are still men, women, and children waiting for us to make the breakthrough discovery that becomes their treatment, their cure.

The month brought us two very different celebrations. And we walked away from each refocused on what is really important.


Thanks a Billion: A Meliora Milestone

Chairman Emeritus Bob Witmer, Jr. ’59 and President Joel Seligman applaud James Aquavella, M.D., for his gift of more than $4 million, which pushed The Meliora Challenge past the $1 billion mark.

In 1992, Stanford University became the first private university to raise $1 billion or more in a campaign ($1.1 billion goal). For the last two decades, only 27 other private colleges and universities in the U.S. could say they have done the same. Now, the University of Rochester can say it too.

On November 20, President Joel Seligman announced The Meliora Challenge: The Campaign for the University of Rochester passed the $1 billion mark. James Aquavella, M.D., professor of ophthalmology, pushed the Campaign past this milestone with a commitment of more than $4 million.

“We are grateful for the vision, generosity and support of our alumni, friends, faculty, staff, parents, and students. Let me especially thank [Chief Advancement Officer] Jim Thompson and the great Advancement team for our progress to date,” said President Seligman. “On behalf of the University, I say to them all: ‘Thanks a billion!’”

The University made The Meliora Challenge an historic endeavor when it announced its $1.2 billion goal, at the Campaign’s public launch in October 2011. To this point, the Campaign has been an unprecedented success, largely due to a strong combination of leadership and philanthropy. No one demonstrates this better than Board of Trustees Chair Ed Hajim ’58. Hajim and his wife, Barbara, are among those leading Campaign giving, committing $30 million in 2008 to fund student scholarships and to support the endowment in the Hajim School of Engineering & Applied Sciences. The Campaign has also benefited from the partnership of Campaign Co-Chairs and University Trustees Cathy Minehan ’68 and Rich Handler ’83—both are generous scholarship donors.

“The Campaign has benefited from the philanthropy of many donors with gifts of all sizes,” said Hajim. “The $1 billion mark is truly significant, achievable only through our broad base of over 155,000 donors.” Of these donors, more than 2,700 have made five-year pledges to support more than 200 unrestricted funds across the University through the George Eastman Circle.

Since the Campaign’s inception, lead donors such as Eastman Kodak Company; University Trustee Robert B. Goergen ’60 and his wife, Pamela; B. Thomas Golisano; Richard and Martha Jane Handler; E. Philip and Carole Saunders; University Trustee Thomas R. Sloan ’65, ’67 (MA) and Linda Sloan ’67; and the Wilmot family have provided transformational gifts that have propelled the Campaign forward.

Aquavella, a clinician and researcher in the Flaum Eye Institute, made his recent gift to honor the memory of his late wife, Kay, a nurse and administrator, who was committed to the establishment of the institute. The gift creates two new professorships in the School of Medicine and Dentistry: the Catherine E. Aquavella Distinguished Professorship in Ophthalmology and the James V. Aquavella, M.D. Professorship in Ophthalmology.

President Seligman acknowledged there is still much to do to effectively support our faculty, students and staff and to develop programs. The Medical Center is a major part of the University's overall campaign with a goal of $650 million, of which $510 million has already been raised. Among its key priorities are programs and research that strive to creatively and aggressively find breakthroughs that will treat—and eventually cure—many diseases, such as muscular dystrophy, Alzheimer's disease, spinal cord injury, Parkinson's disease, and cancer.

Student support (endowed scholarships and fellowships) and faculty support (endowed professorships) remain critical priorities, as well as a new Data Science Initiative—approved by the Board of Trustees in October 2013. The plans for data science include a new signature building and the addition of up to 20 new faculty members to conduct pioneering research.

To read more on the Campaign milestone, click here.

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Regional Campaign Launched in Washington, D.C.

On November 13, the University launched the Washington, D.C. regional campaign for The Meliora Challenge: The Campaign for the University of Rochester, at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, D.C.

University Trustee and George Eastman Circle member Thomas R. Sloan ’65, ’67 (MS), vice chair of East Coast efforts for the Campaign, welcomed more than 150 University alumni, parents, and friends to an evening that allowed them to celebrate, reconnect with, and take pride in Rochester. Fellow George Eastman Circle member Ranny Cooper ’69, chair of the Washington, D.C. Regional Cabinet, built on Sloan’s remarks by highlighting the importance of building a University community beyond Rochester—through Regional Cabinets and the George Eastman Circle.

George Eastman Circle and Washington, D.C. Regional Cabinet members Marty Stern ’79, ’80S (MBA) and Diane Ambler ’71, co-chairs of the regional campaign, will lead the region’s efforts to raise a total of $14 million and build on its George Eastman Circle presence by surpassing 200 memberships by June 30, 2016. Under the leadership of Cooper, the region had already raised $12 million leading up to the launch.

Galen Dole ’14, a music performance major with minors in mathematics and psychology in the School of Arts and Sciences spoke on his eclectic coursework and shared ways he’s been able to use his education outside the classroom. Dole, a beneficiary of the Halee and David Baldwin Undergraduate Scholarship Fund, plans to attend medical school, after completing the Kauffman Entrepreneurial Year Program.

Eastman alumni soprano Adelaide Boedecker ’13E (MM) and accompanist Heather McEwen Goldman ’13E (MM) closed the evening with a moving musical performance.

The Washington, D.C. launch is the University’s fifth formal, regional campaign kickoff with its sixth, the New York City regional campaign, scheduled to be held in March 2014.

To see photos from the Washington, D.C. regional campaign launch, click here.

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Diversity Initiative Exceeds Goal, Pushes Forward

University Trustee Lance Drummond ’85S (MBA) (standing), co-chair of the Diversity Initiative for The Meliora Challenge, speaking with guests at the Celebration of Diversity during Meliora Weekend 2013

In a stirring oration at Rochester’s Corinthian Hall on July 4, 1852, abolitionist Frederick Douglass said, “The blessings in which you, this day, rejoice, are not enjoyed in common.”

Almost 30 years later, the University of Rochester accepted its first African-American student, Henry Austin Spencer, and nearly 20 years after that, Susan B. Anthony convinced the Board of Trustees to admit women.

Today, the University's environment is comprised of students and faculty from many races, cultures, backgrounds, and beliefs.

The Diversity Initiative, one of the special components of The Meliora Challenge: The Campaign for the University of Rochester, sought to raise $5 million to ensure the University remains a diverse community with equally diverse social and academic opportunities. Co-chaired by University Trustees Lance Drummond ’85S (MBA) and Kathy Waller ’80, ’83S (MBA), the Initiative has raised more than $6 million and is still building momentum.

“I am deeply appreciative of the support from so many in the University community for this critical initiative,” said Vivian Lewis, vice provost for faculty development and diversity. “While we still have much work ahead, this success brings us closer to achieving our common vision of a University that reflects and celebrates the richness of diversity among individuals and groups.” 

Like most Campaign efforts, the Diversity Initiative has benefited from the generosity of several lead donors.

Elizabeth Pungello ’89, a George Eastman Circle member, established the Dr. Elizabeth P. Pungello Student Support Fund, which assists undergraduate students in the Early Connection Opportunities Program (ECO) program. The ECO program serves students from low-income, first-generation, and/or underrepresented minority backgrounds. Pungello has also established the Elizabeth Puhn Pungello Fellowship, which provides a tuition-free master's degree and a research stipend to outstanding ECO alumni.

Students have also received support from Martin Zemel ’63, ’65W (MA) and his wife, Laura Fulton. In honor of Martin’s 50th reunion, the couple established the Martin P. Zemel and Laura L. Fulton Endowed Scholarship, which will support the Posse Scholars program. The program, being launched in 2014, provides assistance to talented students with diverse backgrounds. Martin and Laura also support the University through their George Eastman Circle memberships.

Beloved School of Medicine and Dentistry faculty member and associate dean for medical education Tana Grady-Weliky, M.D., touched many students, residents, fellows, and faculty through her dedication to medical education, her commitment to women and diversity in medicine, and her passion for psychiatry. Following her death in 2011, colleagues honored Dr. Grady-Weliky’s memory by establishing a fund to support the Tana Grady-Weliky, M.D. Endowed Lectureship and Visiting Professorship for Women and Diversity in Medicine. The lecture is part of the Faculty Diversity Seminar Series and is held in January or February each year.

For the remainder of the Campaign, which ends June 30, 2016, the Initiative will maintain its focus on three areas: scholarships to support students from underrepresented populations; professorships to attract and retain underrepresented faculty; and funds for lectures, panels, conferences, and other programs that foster inclusivity on campus.

For more information on the Diversity Initiative, click here.

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Pegoli Installed as Inaugural Lobozzo Professor

Mark Taubman, M.D., Walter Pegoli, Jr., M.D., Joseph M. Lobozzo II, and President Joel Seligman

As Mark Taubman, dean of the School of Medicine and Dentistry and University vice president for health sciences, often says, an endowed professorship is the University’s way of telling a faculty member they are outstanding.

The University’s exceptional faculty members are defined in different ways. For Walter Pegoli, Jr., M.D., you could cite the University recruiting him to be chief of pediatric surgery in 1997, after which a department was essentially built around him. You could cite his multiple honors and awards and inclusion in prestigious medical societies. The most telling example, however, might be little Hailey Coniber dressing as “Dr. Goli” for Halloween.

Pegoli, director of pediatric trauma at Golisano Children’s Hospital, has demonstrated excellence in every facet of his work, which has led to him becoming a beloved surgeon and the inaugural Joseph M. Lobozzo II Professor in pediatric surgery.

A ceremony on November 20 honored Pegoli’s extraordinary service and expressed gratitude to Joseph M. Lobozzo II for generosity that allows us to retain preeminent faculty members like Walter Pegoli.

“Walt Pegoli couldn’t be more deserving of this professorship. He is one of the great pediatric surgeons in the country who, by helping us recruit an extraordinary pediatric staff, has been incredibly important to our vision for the new Golisano Children’s Hospital,” said President Joel Seligman. “The Lobozzo Professorship has allowed us to honor and retain an exceptional surgeon in Rochester, and will continue to do so for as long as the University stands.”

Lobozzo is the founder and former chairman of JML Optical Industries, Inc., a manufacturer and distributer of precision optical components and assemblies. He has been a member of the University of Rochester Medical Center Board for the last 14 years and has also served as a board member for the United Way of Greater Rochester and the Catholic Family Center. Lobozzo, a Charter Member of the George Eastman Circle, established the professorship to strengthen a unique program for children in our region. He is widely recognized for his community support, philanthropy, and professional achievements.

Pegoli could be considered a philanthropist, too. Giving the smallest and most vulnerable among us good health and the chance at a long life are special gifts. Dean Taubman remarked on how fortunate Rochester is to have a surgeon of Pegoli’s caliber.

“One of the things we pride ourselves on as a University, a Medical Center, a community, is we can provide the highest quality of medicine for any need; you’ll never have to leave Rochester,” said Taubman. “Since the day that Walter started in 1997, he has made sure that when it comes to pediatric surgery, you can get the best here.”

In addition to his other roles, Pegoli serves as co-chair of the Golisano Children’s Hospital Executive Council and vice chair for clinical affairs in the Department of Surgery. His areas of specialty are neonatal surgery, non-cardiac thoracic surgery, complex gastrointestinal surgery, and surgical oncology. Pegoli’s primary focus for the future: establish a fellowship in pediatric surgery, ensuring there will always be an exceptional pediatric surgeon serving the Rochester community.

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Wine Auction Benefits Heart and Vascular Disease

Bradford Berk ’81M (MD), ’81M (PhD) and Stency and Danny Wegman toast to a record-breaking event

On November 9, the 13th annual Toast to Your Health Fine Wine Auction was held at the Robert B. Wegman Conference Facility in Rochester. Hosted by Wegmans, the Swiss Alps-themed black-tie gala raised funds to be invested in promising new ideas for groundbreaking cardiac research and approaches to cardiac care.

Every year, attendees’ generosity supports crucial patient- and family-centered care and research initiatives at the University of Rochester Medical Center. This year, the auction was chaired by University Life Trustee Michael E. Jones ’76, senior vice president and senior portfolio manager of Federated Clover Investment Advisors, and University Trustee Richard T. Aab, president of RTA Associates, LLC. With the help of wine enthusiasts and supporters of the Medical Center, net proceeds for the sold-out auction exceeded a record-setting $1 million.

“Thanks to our extremely generous hosts, Danny and Stency Wegman, Co-Chairs Mike Jones and Rick Aab, distinguished guests Sherwood Deutsch and Michael Misch of Wegmans Wine & Spirits, and our devoted sponsors, donors, and guests, particularly Bob Gordon of I. Gordon Corporation, John and Seana Holtz, and Constellation Brands Inc., we’ll be able to transform life-saving discoveries into new preventions and cures for heart patients across the region and around the world,” said Bradford C. Berk ’81M (MD), ’81M (PhD), CEO of the Medical Center and senior vice president for health sciences.

Discoveries and innovations by the Medical Center’s Cardiology Division have saved hundreds of thousands of lives worldwide, the Heart Research Follow-up Program set the international standard for preventing cardiac deaths, and the Advanced Heart Failure Program ranks among the top five such programs in the United States, including the first team in upstate New York to implant a total artificial heart. The Medical Center also has one of only a handful of institutes in the nation devoted to heart research, the Aab Cardiovascular Research Institute, where more than 100 scientists, technicians, and fellows explore new ways to understand heart disease and develop innovative therapies for patients.

The funds raised will count toward the Medical Center’s $650 million campaign goal in support of The Meliora Challenge: The Campaign for the University of Rochester. The Medical Center’s campaign is being led by Co-Chairs Richard Aab and Rochester businessman E. Philip Saunders and Honorary Chair Danny Wegman. Bob Gordon is serving as chair of the heart and vascular component of the Medical Center’s campaign.

To see photos from the 2013 Toast to Your Health Fine Wine Auction or watch a video featuring the story of a grateful family shown at the auction, click here.

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Celebrating Douglas Lowry

On Sunday, November 3, family, friends, and colleagues of Douglas Lowry, who served as the Joan and Martin Messinger Dean at the Eastman School of Music, gathered in Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre. The afternoon provided a tribute, a remarkable collection of memories and music from Eastman Philharmonia, Chorale, and Trombone Choir; the Ying Quartet; and current Eastman Dean Jamal Rossi.

Lowry passed away on October 2 at age 62.

While the gathering celebrated Douglas Lowry, the educator and the musician, it also celebrated Douglas Lowry, the man, with stories of humility, humanity, humor—and legendary pizza-making skills. Tributes came from many including Christopher Seaman, former Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra musical director; Ralph W. Kuncl, University of Redlands president and former University of Rochester provost; Joseph W. Polisi, Juilliard School president; Rabbi Sarah Messinger; and Lowry’s three children, Jennifer, Melanie, and Tim.

President Joel Seligman acknowledged cancer can be vicious and cruel, but went on to describe his friend’s indomitable spirit and his overpowering love of music. “In more than one meeting," Seligman said, “he composed music.”

A final closing tribute brought the many sides of Lowry together. As Lowry’s Geo was played by the Eastman Philharmonia conducted by Neil Varon, a montage of photos showed Lowry in moments serious and playful with students, colleagues, family, and friends. In short, celebrating the reflective, expressive, and transformative life of an extraordinary man. 

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October 2013

Rickers Endow Faculty Positions and a Scholarship at Eastman

While studying clarinet, 16-year-old Ramon “Ray” Ricker ’73E (DMA) developed an interest in jazz that led him to begin taking saxophone lessons. Over the course of more than 50 years, Ricker’s interest became his passion. Now his passion has become his gift to the Eastman School of Music.

Ray, professor emeritus of saxophone, and his wife, Judith Ricker ’76E (BM), ’81E (MM), ’91S (MBA), have committed a significant gift to faculty and student support at Eastman. The Rickers’ gift will endow two faculty positions—a professor of saxophone and a professor of jazz saxophone—and a scholarship fund to support talented classical and jazz saxophone students at Eastman who have demonstrated financial need. The Rickers also support Eastman and Simon Business School annual funds as members of the George Eastman Circle.

After serving at Eastman for more than 40 years as a faculty artist, a professor, and an administrator, Ray retired in the spring of 2013. During his tenure as senior associate dean for professional studies and director of the Institute for Music Leadership (IML), he helped shape the School’s entrepreneurship programs and initiatives.

In September 2013, the Eastman School recognized Ray’s leadership and his joint philanthropy with Judith by awarding him the 2013 Eastman Dean’s Medal. Established in 2008, the Dean’s Medal recognizes extraordinary service, philanthropy, and leadership to the Eastman School of Music, and dedication and commitment that inspire others to take leadership roles at the University. It is among the highest honors given by the School. 

After graduating from Eastman, Judith went on to play oboe for the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra for 15 years. She also taught at the Hochstein School of Music & Dance. Judith recently retired from her position as executive vice president of brand research at the marketing research firm Market Probe and is currently working as an independent consultant. In 2012, she was awarded the “Great Minds Silver Innovation Award” by the Advertising Research Foundation. The award recognized her research on what drives consumers’ passion for brands in various industries and over time.

Ray, as a professional musician and music contractor, has performed on hundreds of television commercials and program themes, including national accounts for NBC, ABC, Cinemax, HBO, and Arts and Entertainment. His books on jazz improvisation and saxophone technique, as well as many of his compositions, are viewed as standards in the field—more than 150,000 copies have been sold worldwide with French and Japanese translations. His latest book, Lessons From a Street-Wise Professor: What You Won’t Learn at Most Music Schools was chosen as a finalist in the “Business: Entrepreneurship and Small Business” category for the USA Best Books Awards in 2011.  


A Meliora Message

Any of us of a certain age probably share a common experience… Sitting in front of the television fighting to stay awake to watch the Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon. As the hour grew late—or early, depending on how you looked at it—many of us fell asleep as someone was spinning plates or as poodles in tutus were walking on their hind legs.

That’s about the time that the pledges slowed down and we often wondered if they would reach their goal.


It lagged at that point. Were people confident that Jerry would surely reach the goal? Or were they just waiting until it was closer at hand to do their part?

We’ve entered a critical phase of The Meliora Challenge: The Campaign for the University of Rochester where we can't begin to feel certain that our goal is within easy reach and we can't surrender to temptation to save our efforts for the home stretch. 

We’ve been able to do amazing things, as you’ll see in this issue, thanks to generous benefactors and their meaningful gifts. We’ve created scholarships and endowed professorships. And we’ve renovated and built halls that will be home to entertainment and learning and healing for as long as there is a University of Rochester.

And we’ve built something else that isn’t going away.  


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Meliora Weekend 2013

Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates gives keynote address at Kodak Hall

An open exchange of ideas. Connections that last a lifetime. And a good dose of laughter.

Those are some of the things that Meliora Weekend is all about.

And they were on display when Representative Barney Frank and Professor Arthur Miller ’56, ’08 (LLD) sat down in this year’s Combined Presidential Symposium-Miller's Court on “Great Issues of the 21st Century.” Introduced by Hugo Sonnenschein ’61, University trustee and president emeritus of the University of Chicago, the conversation was punctuated by Frank’s unique sense of humor and flavored by his friendship with Miller of more than 40 years.

It was just one event in four days full of interesting discussions, renewed relationships, memories recalled, and new ones made. As always, Meliora Weekend was anchored by the reason many come back to campus year after year—the chance to reunite with classmates and faculty. A number of classes enjoyed reunions including the 50th reunion of the Class of 1963. Fans basked in the sun and in the Yellowjackets’ 38–13 gridiron win over Alfred State College. Students from across the University entertained in dozens of performances. And more than 6,200 attendees enjoyed a weekend full of stellar events and even better weather.

On Saturday, former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates took a packed audience in Eastman Theatre’s Kodak Hall on a journey around the globe, stopping to give his perspective and insights at milestone events and at a variety of trouble spots, including one of the most troubling spots of all—Washington, D.C. Despite the grave nature of Gates’ former responsibilities, he left the audience with a sense of optimism that he emphasized grows at great research universities like Rochester.

On Friday evening, the George Eastman Circle welcomed Wall Street Journal columnist Peggy Noonan who talked of leadership and her unique relationships with Presidents George H. W. Bush and Ronald Reagan. It was a fitting theme for many of the leaders of The Meliora Challenge who gathered to hear her thoughts and insights. Comedian Demetri Martin, former writer at Late Night with Conan O’Brien and regular performer on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, entertained a full house in the Palestra.

MEL Talks—new to Meliora Weekend—gathered some of our most dynamic alumni, faculty, and students to share ideas, experiences, and opportunities. And the topics they discussed were as diverse and far ranging as the people who make up the University community. Mark Noble, director of the University of Rochester Stem Cell and Regenerative Medicine Institute, emphasized the importance of funding research and highlighted the University’s stem cell programs and their potential for revolutionizing treatment of cancer, spinal cord injury, and genetic disorders. Kathy Rideout ’95W (EdD), dean of the School of Nursing, discussed the impending shortage of primary care providers and how nurse practitioners, urgent care centers, and other providers might step up to avert this looming crisis. Dana Mittleman ’05 spoke passionately about her experience of taking the President of the United States’ carefully chosen words and expressing them in American Sign Language. And John Covach, the Mercer Brugler Distinguished Teaching Professor in the School of Arts & Sciences, presented “Out of Nowhere: The Surprising Emergence of Elvis Presley and The Beatles.” As we said, diverse.

And 50 years after one of the most transformative years in our nation’s history, three alumni sat down to talk about what it was like to be on campus in the fall of 1963, when the International Club first took shape. The College Diversity Roundtable, moderated by Michelle Thompson-Taylor, director of the University’s Intercultural Center, brought together Dorothea de Zafra Atwell ’63, Brian Fleming ’63, and Payne Masuku ’65 for a discussion on what it was like to be on campus as students from around the world came together for the first time. 

Meliora Weekend 2013 has come and gone. For many reasons—from the guests to the weather—it will be remembered as a perfect example of the University of Rochester at its finest. To view photos from the weekend, click here.

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Rettner Hall Formally Dedicated

100 years from now, when the University gathers to celebrate the anniversary of the dedication of Ronald Rettner Hall for Media Arts and Innovation, as we recently did for the Memorial Art Gallery, none of us will be here.

Except Ron Rettner.

As President Joel Seligman said in his opening remarks, with such a momentous gift comes a degree of immortality. “Eastman. Strong. Bausch and Lomb. Goergen. These are some of the names on our buildings. And now, Rettner. It bespeaks a legacy that will stretch to classes tens of years, perhaps hundreds of years, from now.”

Ron Rettner will be there every time a student climbs the signature staircase to work in the open labs and state-of-the-art studios or when students from many disciplines sit and talk about new solutions and think in new ways. His legacy will be there in brick and mortar, but it will also live on through countless students and innumerable innovations.

On October 11, Rettner, a University trustee, and his family were joined by President Seligman, Board Chair Ed Hajim ’58, City of Rochester Mayor Tom Richards, former Congressman Joseph DioGuardi, and other invited guests to formally dedicate the building that promises to be at the center of University learning—both in its location and its philosophy.

Sadé Richardson ’15 spoke of how Rettner Hall will be a home to her and to students for generations to come. “I envision Rettner Hall as a place for students to come together and share their different ideas and abilities to enhance the learning environment for us all.” 

And Tom DiPiero, dean for Humanities and Interdisciplinary Studies, stressed that Rettner Hall will be a home to many of the values—invention and imagination, creativity and collaboration—that define the new majors of digital media studies and audio and music engineering that will be housed there. “The whole point to Rettner Hall is to inspire students to think collaboratively. It will make the way we deliver education something to be emulated. We’re all extremely grateful to Ron Rettner for making this vision possible.”

A ribbon cutting followed the dedication ceremony and Rabbi Asher Yaras offered a benediction before Rettner Hall’s doors were opened to one and all for an open house.

And that’s what it promises to be, far into the future.

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Porsteinsson Installed as Inaugural Konar Professor

Howard Konar; Mark Taubman, M.D., President Joel Seligman, Sheila Konar, Anton Porsteinsson, M.D. and Bradford Berk ’81M (MD), ’81M (PhD)

Count to 68. That’s about how long it takes for someone in America to develop Alzheimer’s disease.

Today, there are more than 5 million who suffer with Alzheimer’s. By 2050, the rate at which people develop Alzheimer’s is expected to more than double, and the number of people living with the disease is projected to almost triple. These estimations would make Alzheimer’s the leading cause of death nationally, eclipsing heart disease and cancer.

These are scary statistics. However, Anton P. Porsteinsson ’93M (Res), director of the Alzheimer’s Disease Care, Research and Education Program, is a reason to be optimistic. Porsteinsson is an internationally renowned clinical researcher and a leading expert in Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, which only begins to demonstrate why he was installed as the inaugural William and Sheila Konar Endowed Professor.

On October 2, a ceremony recognized Porsteinsson’s extraordinary contributions to the Departments of Psychology and Neurology and more than three decades of support from his benefactors, William (Bill) and Sheila Konar.

“The Konars’ generosity and leadership will lead to new ways of preventing and treating Alzheimer’s disease and other brain diseases that affect memory, thinking, behavior, and mood,” said President Joel Seligman. “From the bottom of my heart, I thank the Konars for their determination to help rid the world of a vicious disease that has touched so many of us.”

Bill Konar is the founder of William B. Konar Enterprises, which owns apartments, townhouses, warehouses, and industrial parks in Rochester. An active community volunteer, Sheila Konar has served as a board member of the Rochester-area chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association and volunteers at Rochester City School District’s Henry W. Longfellow School No. 36.

The Konars’ gift is believed to be the largest gift devoted to the support of clinical research for Alzheimer’s disease that the University has ever received. Among the top six causes of death in the U.S. today, Alzheimer’s is the only one for which there is no prevention, cure, or treatment. Thanks to their professorship, Porsteinsson’s work is poised to take a giant leap forward.

“Anton’s work has given the University of Rochester a reputation for being a destination for clinical studies on Alzheimer’s,” said Mark Taubman, dean of the School of Medicine and Dentistry and University vice president for Health Sciences. “Because of his team’s work, when there’s a breakthrough in this disease, we won’t be waiting to hear about it. We’ll be among the centers that made it happen. And I want to thank Anton for making us a leading center for Alzheimer’s research.”

Porsteinsson’s focus is on the biomarkers, imaging, and novel medications in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, addressing both cognitive loss and behavioral disturbances. He participates in the University’s Memory Care Program and is an author and a collaborator in hundreds of research publications. Porsteinsson has received extensive recognition including being listed in Distinguished Professionals, The Global Directory of Who’s Who, and Who’s Who in America.

To read more on Porsteinsson, his research, and the Konars’ gift, click here.

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Agrawal Installed as Inaugural Wyant Professor

G. Robert Witmer, Jr. ’59, James C. Wyant ’67 (MS), ’69 (PhD); Govind Agrawal, Ph.D.; Robert L. Clark, Ph.D.; and President Joel Seligman

Parachute deployed. We are decelerating. Standing by for back shell separation. We are at power flight. Standing by for sky crane. Sky crane has started. Touch down confirmed. We’re safe on Mars!

Because there was no way to see it, NASA’s mission scientists had to be talked through the agonizing moments leading up to the Mars rover “Curiosity” successfully landing on the red planet in August 2012. Govind Agrawal, Ph.D., professor of optics at the Institute of Optics, and his work with lasers is helping to make seeing something like this in real-time more and more possible.

When it’s not helping us put a webcam on Mars, Agrawal’s work is strengthening the foundation of our modern telecommunications infrastructure. A leading expert in optical communications, Agrawal is a fitting selection for the inaugural Dr. James C. Wyant Professor in Optics.

On October 28, Agrawal was installed as the Wyant Professor in the Hawkins–Carlson Room of Rush Rhees Library in the company of family, friends, and many faculty members, students, and staff from the University community. For all the celebrating of Agrawal’s achievement, there was equal time spent honoring the generosity that made it possible. For that, the ceremony recognized University Trustee James C. Wyant ’67 (MS), ’69 (PhD).

“Jim’s career in teaching, scholarship, and the practical application of optics has truly made him a leader in optical science,” said President Joel Seligman. “As a new trustee, Jim has already become a valuable member of the University’s Board, which values his wise counsel and great support of our University.”

This is the second professorship in the field of optics Wyant has established at the University. The first honored his former professor, the late M. Parker Givens, a highly revered teacher to generations of students at the Institute of Optics.

Wyant is professor emeritus at the University of Arizona’s College of Optical Sciences, where he also served as director and dean. He has been a visiting professor at the Institute of Optics since 1983 and has returned to Rochester annually to teach in the Institute’s summer school for 29 of the past 30 years. Wyant also supports the Institute through his George Eastman Circle membership, and he is a member of the Dean's Advisory Committee for the Edmund A. Hajim School of Engineering & Applied Sciences.

Wyant is a former president of the Optical Society of America (OSA), with which Agrawal has also been extensively involved. Agrawal is a fellow of the OSA and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). In 2012, the IEEE presented him with its prestigious Quantum Electronics Award. He is also the 2013 recipient of the University’s William H. Riker University Award for Excellence in Graduate Teaching.

Agrawal has authored or coauthored more than 400 research papers and eight books including Fiber-Optic Communication Systems (4th edition, Wiley 2010) and Nonlinear Fiber Optics (5th edition, Academic Press 2013), graduate studies texts which have helped train a generation of scientists.

“Not only has Govind been prolific in his scholarly efforts, but in his domain, his work has been highly valued, being cited thousands and thousands of times,” said Robert L. Clark, dean of the Edmund A. Hajim School of Engineering & Applied Sciences and senior vice president for research. “We have an outstanding scholar who is applying his talents to research, to education, and in service to the Institute of Optics.”

Agrawal is also a professor of physics in Arts, Sciences & Engineering and a senior scientist at the Laboratory for Laser Energetics. His research interests include optical communications, semiconductor lasers, nonlinear fiber optics, and silicon photonics.

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Golisano Children’s Hospital Progress, Block by Block 

Brick by brick, the new Golisano Children’s Hospital is steadily rising.

In celebration of the building’s progress, the 26th annual Golisano Children’s Hospital Gala, held on October 19, used a theme of children’s blocks to decorate the Rochester Riverside Convention Center and to emphasize the continuing achievements toward our goal of building one of the country’s preeminent children’s hospitals.

More than 800 elegantly dressed guests attended the Hospital’s premier annual fundraising event. They enjoyed dinner and lively entertainment and participated in silent and live auctions to raise funds to create the interior environment of rooms where patients and families will take respite in the hospital.

As the evening came to an end, generous benefactors had contributed approximately $625,000 in support of the new building and the people and programs that will make this a destination for patients and families across the state.

Honorary Chair Gary Mauro continued his unwavering support of Golisano Children’s Hospital. His business, J.T. Mauro Company, provided complete mechanical systems for the Children’s Hospital’s Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) and Pediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Unit, as well as the William and Mildred Levine Pediatric Surgical Suite projects. The company has also funded a PICU nurse’s station and has been a sponsor for the Miracle Maker’s Luncheon every year since its inception. Gary has been involved with the Gala and golf tournament committees for many years. Most recently, J.T. Mauro committed $150,000 to name the atrium balcony in the new Children’s Hospital.

Mike Smith of The Cabot Group, this year’s presenting sponsor, has been a member of the Children’s Hospital board for three years. The 2010 Miracle Maker Award recipient for outstanding commitment by a corporation, The Cabot Group has continuously recognized the Hospital’s needs and invested in the future care of our community’s children. This year marked the fifth time The Cabot Group has been the presenting sponsor of the Gala. In 2008, the company committed to sponsoring the event for 10 years.

The funds raised throughout the evening will support Golisano Children’s Hospital’s $100 million campaign. Launched publicly at the 2011 gala, the campaign supports major enhancements to several pediatric programs and is part of the University of Rochester Medical Center’s $650 million campaign and the overall $1.2 billion goal of The Meliora Challenge: The Campaign for the University of Rochester.

To see photos from the gala, click here.

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Centennial Celebrations at the Gallery

An October 8, 2013 ceremony marked the rededication of the original 1913 Memorial Art Gallery.

A man with Alzheimer’s disease offers his critiques while touring the Memorial Art Gallery with his wife. He shares how the art speaks to him. Afterward, his wife is asked how it was meaningful. The woman answers “It gave me my husband back.”

While visiting a temporary exhibition, a school teacher points out a student who hasn’t said a word in 10 weeks that now can’t stop talking about a painting.

We have to believe these are among the types of experiences Gallery founder Emily Sibley Watson had in mind when she sought an art museum for the edification and enjoyment of all of Rochester’s citizens.

On October 5, 350 guests began celebrating 100 years of the Memorial Art Gallery at the Centennial Gala that remembered Watson for helping to define and shape Rochester’s cultural strength and richness. The evening also recognized the remarkable 50-year leadership of the Herdle family: George Herdle, the Gallery’s first director; Gertrude Herdle Moore, the Gallery’s second and longest-serving director; and Isabel Herdle, the Gallery’s associate director.

The memories of these important early leaders in the Gallery’s history were further honored on October 8 at the rededication of the 1913 building.

“We, like the Watsons and Herdles, know that this museum offers every visitor a place for understanding and reflection, and if we’re lucky, a place of mystery, wonder, and delight,” said Grant Holcomb, the Mary W. and Donald R. Clark Director of the Memorial Art Gallery. “The Gallery brings something different to everyone.”

Holcomb was joined by President Joel Seligman; James Durfee, president of the Gallery’s Board of Managers; several dignitaries, and guest of honor, Anastasia Watson Markson. In the Renaissance Gallery, Markson, as a member of the Watson family, helped formally dedicate what will now forever be known as the Watson Family Foyer.

The Gallery’s centennial celebration, culminated with a public “birthday party,” on October 13. Attendees enjoyed hands-on art activities, storytelling, guided tours, music and dance performances, birthday cake, and more.

A vision Emily Watson had more than 100 years ago—to bring art to the community—is now readily seen through the Centennial Sculpture Park, which invites the community to enjoy the Gallery’s grounds. The Sculpture Park is among the priorities of the Gallery’s “Gateways to Art” campaign, which has raised more than $25 million.

Bolstering the endowment is the campaign’s primary objective. Fortunately, the Gallery has friends like eight-year-old Jonathan Hacker who, after visiting with his mother gave $.26 to keep his museum open forever. 

To see photos from the events celebrating the centennial anniversary, click here.

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University Mourns Loss of Eastman Dean Douglas Lowry

The University community continues to cope with the loss of Douglas Lowry, who served as the Joan and Martin Messinger Dean of the Eastman School of Music, who died Wednesday, October 2. He will be remembered as a composer, conductor, and academic leader who was keenly attuned to the shifting music world and its challenges for music schools and students.

“Doug was a remarkable University leader. He brought together the Eastman community in ways that were deeply appreciated by its faculty, staff, students, alumni, and friends,” said President Joel Seligman. “He was the leader during whose watch the School renovated and expanded Eastman Theatre. Inspiring new faculty members were hired. Doug was a national presence in music education and an individual whose charm, wit, and intelligence inspired generations of students and colleagues.”

The Main Hall, the atrium that connects the Eastman School of Music and the Eastman Theatre, will be re-named Lowry Hall in Doug Lowry’s honor. Family, friends, colleagues, and admirers will gather in Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre for a memorial celebration on November 3 at 3 p.m.

Memorial gifts may be directed to the Douglas Lowry Fund for Musical Excellence to support Dean Lowry’s vision and the mission of the Eastman School of Music. 

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September 2013

Special Message from
President Joel Seligman

I consider this readership a special group within the University community, which is why I wanted to personally inform you that Jim Thompson recently began a medical leave from his Advancement duties.

Jim Thompson has been my partner in building the University of Rochester’s Advancement program for almost eight years. He has been a dedicated leader who has made enormous contributions to our Advancement efforts.

Because Jim’s leave is expected to last several months, I have appointed James W. Osterholt to serve as Interim Senior Vice President and Chief Advancement Officer. Jim Osterholt has had a very successful career in fundraising, most recently as Interim Vice President for Advancement at Pomona College. He also spent 21 years at UCLA, many of them as lead advancement officer. There is no doubt Jim Osterholt will provide sure-handed interim leadership until Jim Thompson returns.

Since its inception, Jim Thompson has been the steady and enthusiastic voice of this publication. In his absence, the Advancement team will do their best to fill this role, as we look forward to Jim’s return.


A Meliora Message

Meliora Weekend 2013 is right around the corner.

Those returning to campus only have to look around to see the principle of Meliora and how, in the twelve months between this Meliora Weekend and the last, we have continued to be “ever better.”

Meliora Weekend is not only an opportunity to reconnect to friends and colleagues, it is an ideal time to pause and reflect on the importance and the impact of what is happening throughout the University.

You can see the results of our efforts everywhere. In the brick and mortar that are coming together to change our University. And in the brilliance and determination of our people that are changing the world.

Look to the center of the River Campus and you see Ronald Rettner Hall for Media Arts and Innovation, which will house two new majors.

Across the way is Raymond F. LeChase Hall, the first dedicated home to the Warner School.

There are the transformed grounds of the Memorial Art Gallery, and the new Centennial Sculpture Park.

Rising above it all is the steel that will soon be the new Golisano Children’s Hospital.

And everywhere are the faculty, staff, and students that are developing innovative technologies, breakthrough treatments, and tomorrow’s leaders in areas ranging from engineering to education and from music to medicine. 

Even though we live it every day, the spirit of Meliora really comes alive on these four days in October. We look forward to you joining us in person or in spirit—and in the Campaign to make the University, our University, “ever better.”

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Wyss Gift Strengthens Orthopaedics

Steven I. Kates, M.D.

Swiss entrepreneur and philanthropist Hansjörg Wyss has given the University $2 million to support clinical work and research related to geriatric fracture care being led by Stephen Kates ’89M (Res) in the Department of Orthopaedics and the Center for Musculoskeletal Research (CMSR) at the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC).

Wyss’s generosity, which in the past has supported medicine, education, arts, and land conservation, has established the Hansjörg Wyss Professorship in Orthopaedic Surgery. The gift will support Kates’s efforts to develop and disseminate a program that treats fractures in geriatric patients.

“Mr. Wyss’s generous gift is a testament to the caliber of the University’s outstanding clinical and research endeavors in the orthopaedic field and the pioneering work of Steve Kates in addressing geriatric fractures,” said Mark B. Taubman, M.D., dean of the School of Medicine and Dentistry and University vice president for Health Sciences. “It undoubtedly will accelerate our efforts to improve the health of orthopaedic patients worldwide.”

Kates and Wyss have a longtime connection through the AO Foundation, a nonprofit Swiss organization that supports research and development in the orthopaedics field. Wyss is a founder and honorary member of the AO Foundation, which currently funds Kates’s research in orthopaedic infections. For more than a decade, Kates’s goal has been to improve all aspects of care for geriatric fracture patients, which includes managing the continuum of care as part of the Geriatric Fracture Center.

“I am pleased to be able to support Dr. Kates’s excellent work studying, treating, and teaching the management of fractures in geriatric patients,” said Wyss. “Fractures in geriatric patients are an important clinical issue today and are predicted to increase dramatically over the next decade. I congratulate Dr. Kates on what he has accomplished so far, and I look forward to seeing the positive impact of my gift.”

Kates is one of the country’s top orthopaedic surgeons and serves as chief of the Metabolic Bone and Geriatric Division and associate director of the CMSR at the Medical Center. His efforts in geriatric fractures include research, national and international lecturing, and expanding the unique model of health care as well as improving the treatment of patients at the Geriatric Fracture Center at Highland Hospital.

The CMSR is addressing some of the most challenging issues in the musculoskeletal sciences, all in an effort to improve the health of patients. The CMSR currently is ranked No. 1 in the nation in National Institutes of Health (NIH) orthopaedic funding, receiving $4.86 million in peer-reviewed NIH grants in 2012, surpassing institutions such as Washington University, Johns Hopkins, and Duke University. At a time when research dollars are becoming increasingly scarce, the CMSR upped its funding by 30 percent over the previous year. Since 2000 it has consistently ranked among the top five NIH-funded musculoskeletal programs in the country.

The Department of Orthopaedics, led by Chair Regis J. O’Keefe ’00M (PhD), the Marjorie Strong Wehle Professor in Orthopaedics, is the highest NIH funded orthopaedic program in the United States.The department boasts a proud history of leadership in orthopaedic care and research that includes creating the gold standard for basal joint arthritis with the “Burton Procedure;” having the first team in the nation perform meniscal repairs in the knee; and having faculty members who have served for more than 30 years as directors of the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgeons.

For more information on Wyss’s gift, Dr. Kates, the Department of Orthopaedics, and the CMSR, click here.

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Handlers Host Event Recognizing Importance of Scholarships

From left: Michael Lightman ’14S, Madalina Viasceanu ’16, Danika Felty ’15E, Shay Behrens ’14, and Nathaniel Bayer ’15M

As a young girl growing up in Avoca, Iowa, Shay Behrens ’14 dreamed of becoming a doctor but knew that dreams were not enough. Nor were hard work and determination, which she exhibited in abundance. For Shay, like so many others, success required the generosity of others in the form of scholarship support.

On September 9, University Trustee and Co-Chair of The Meliora Challenge: The Campaign for the University of Rochester Richard Handler ’83 and his wife, Martha, opened their home to guests, President Joel Seligman, and students from Arts, Sciences & Engineering, the Eastman School of Music, the William E. Simon School of Business, and the School of Medicine and Dentistry in celebration of the spirit—and the success—of scholarships.

Throughout the evening, the students spoke of the difference their scholarships made in their education and in the pursuit of their aspirations. And everywhere in the room, the Handlers’ ongoing generosity was visible.

For Shay, who is the first in her family to attend college, the Alan and Jane Handler Scholarship brought her dream within reach. “With the Alan and Jane Handler Scholarship, I will have no financial obstacles, so I can focus on becoming the best student, leader, and adult. I can put more time into helping others as the Handlers have helped me.”

Nathaniel Bayer ’15M, recipient of the Carl B. Emerson Memorial Scholarship and the Dr. Hugh Hayward Scholarship, stressed that he views scholarship funding as an ongoing opportunity, now and in the future. “Without this support, medical school would not have been feasible for me. I am immensely grateful for this gift and for the opportunity to help patients’ lives. I know one day, I will give this chance to another student at the University.”

Madalina Vlasceanu ’16 spoke of how the Alan and Jane Handler Scholarship helped her pursue new opportunities outside her home country. “I would have had very limited options in Romania for higher education, and I would not have been able to receive higher education in the U.S. if it wasn’t for this scholarship.”

Danika Felty ’15E described how the Andrew Stalder Collegiate Scholarship helped her pursue her dreams of a career in music. “Through my education at Eastman, which this scholarship has made possible, I am able to reach for my goals, which includes performing to raise funds for the Heart and Stroke Foundation.”

And Michael Lightman ’14S, recipient of the Sue and David Reh Scholarship, spoke of his plans to follow the example of his benefactors and give back in the future. “Knowing that there are people who have succeeded through the same rigorous experiences we have, and who have invested in us to also succeed, inspires me to be the best that I can.” 

Together, all of the students served as testaments to the importance, and the power, of scholarship support. Scholarships and fellowships are major components of the Student Support goal, one of the top priorities of The Meliora Challenge: The Campaign for the University of Rochester. As of September 16, $160 million has been raised, representing 71% of the $225 million goal for student support.

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The Bennett and Davielle Keiser Scholarship Challenge

For many students, paying for higher education can be a challenge. It’s a financial reality at virtually every university, including our own.

Thanks to the generosity of the Keiser Family, including alumni Bennett Keiser ’75 and his daughter Davielle Keiser ’08, that burden promises to be lessened for students far into the future because of a challenge of a more positive sort.

The Bennett and Davielle Keiser Scholarship Challenge is designed to encourage alumni, parents, and friends to create an endowed scholarship in any discipline within Arts, Sciences & Engineering. Beginning July 1, 2013, for the first eight new endowed scholarship pledges of at least $100,000 to Arts, Sciences & Engineering, the Keiser Family will contribute an additional $25,000 to each new endowment.

A gift of this type is a chance to multiply the impact of every scholarship that it touches. An endowed scholarship like those supported by the Keiser Challenge is an excellent way to provide opportunities to those in great need and those with great talent—and to create a legacy of tuition support that continues as long as the challenge of paying for the best education does.

For more information, click here.

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MEL Talks New to Meliora Weekend

Beginning this October during Meliora Weekend, the University will be spreading the spirit of Meliora through a new program: MEL Talks.

Modeled after the structure and flow of “TED Talks,” MEL Talks is a new University program that will deliver stimulating and inspirational stories, performances, and presentations from University alumni, faculty, and students. MEL Talks will be held in the Louis A. Alexander Palestra on Saturday, October 12 in two sessions, featuring a mix of speakers, performances, and video. 

Among the six speakers in session one, David Hursh, professor of education at the Margaret Warner Graduate School of Education and Human Development, will give alternatives to high stakes performance reviews and the testing “madness” in today’s schools. And American Sign Language interpreter Dana Mittelman ’05 will share what it’s like tackling the intimidating task of signing for President Barack Obama.

Session two will have six more speakers, featuring Kathy Rideout, EdD, PNP-BC, FNAP, dean of the School of Nursing discussing how nurse practitioners, urgent care centers, and other providers can help prevent the looming shortage of primary care providers. And Emily Wozniak ’09E, ’14E (MM), founder and executive director of Sound ExChange, who will share ways to present music that turns the traditional experience on its head. To check session times and/or see the full lineup of speakers, click here.

MEL Talks is just one of the many highlights of Meliora Weekend 2013, which kicks off on Thursday, October 10. Meliora Weekend, now in its 13th year, is a unique Rochester tradition that welcomes parents, alumni, family, and friends to campus for dozens of programs, including lectures, dinners, department open houses, performances, exhibits, and reunion celebrations. Registration for all programs and events can be done online until Tuesday, October 1, at noon EDT.

To register for a program or event or for more information on Meliora Weekend 2013, click here.

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Special Issue—Endowed Professorships


Values and Action

Our faculty members are the core of our University and they are exemplars of Meliora. As of June 30, 2013 we have raised $297 million of our $350 million Faculty Support goal for The Meliora Challenge. This represents various types of giving, including your tremendous support of endowed professorships.

Thanks to your leadership and generosity, as of this writing, we have succeeded in establishing 66 new endowed professorships. We set a goal to reach a minimum of 80 new endowed professorships by the end of the Campaign. Your inspirational giving has put us in a position to go well beyond that number. Together, we are building a tradition of faculty excellence.

In recent months, we have strived to highlight the importance of endowed professorships as a crucial resource at the University. They were the focus of the Winter 2013 issue of Endeavor and, more recently, we released a brochure dedicated to this special initiative. We have also covered the establishment and celebration of many endowed professorships in this newsletter between July 1, 2012 and June 30, 2013.

To read about professorships featured in past issues of Fast Forward and learn more about some of our distinguished faculty members and the benefactors who have created legacies of support in areas across the University, click on any of the professorships below.


James D. Thompson
Senior Vice President
Chief Advancement Officer