March 2013

Schwarz Installed as the Inaugural Burton Professor

(From left) Margaret Burton, Richard I. Burton ’64M (Res), President Joel Seligman, and Edward M. Schwarz, Ph.D.

The University of Rochester’s Department of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation and the Center for Musculoskeletal Research (CMSR) are nationally recognized leaders in their fields. This reputation for quality has been built by faculty members who are preeminent physicians, educators, and scientists. In this regard, Edward M. Schwarz, Ph.D., has proven to be exemplary.

On March 7, Schwarz was installed as the Richard and Margaret Burton Distinguished Professor in Orthopaedics for his extraordinary contributions to musculoskeletal health. A ceremony including family, friends, colleagues, and University leaders honored Schwarz and Richard (Dick) I. Burton ’64M (Res) and his wife, Margaret “Peggy” Burton, for their commitment and generosity to the Medical Center.

“Dick and Peggy’s leadership was the inspiration for so many others to make contributions that helped establish this distinguished professorship,” said President Joel Seligman. “Their dedication to strengthening the University of Rochester Medical Center has provided an example of ‘loyalty of the highest order.’”

Dick, the inaugural Marjorie Strong Wehle Professor in Orthopaedics, and Peggy have a deep understanding of the value of an endowed professorship. With their gift, they perpetuate success and breakthrough research in a department that Dick has been a central figure in building for the last 50 years.

During Dick’s tenure in the Department of Orthopaedics, residency has nearly doubled, the endowment has increased tenfold, and it is one of the country’s top five orthopaedic programs in National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding. His legacy will now be carried forward by Schwarz and future holders of the Richard and Margaret Burton Distinguished Professorship in Orthopaedics.

“Eddie has always thought outside the box, and is someone who will use this professorship to continue to do exciting work,” said Mark Taubman, dean of the School of Medicine and Dentistry. “I have total confidence we will always see innovation from Eddie, who is both a great scientist and entrepreneur.” Taubman continued by stating Schwarz has worked tirelessly—through the creation of two companies, ten patents, and innovative research—to find new ways to heal bone.

Gene therapy is one of those new approaches. Schwarz and his team are using their knowledge of genes known to “turn on” the healing process in bone to find solutions to diseases associated with inflammatory bone loss, such as arthritis, bone infections, tumor metastasis to bone, and aseptic loosening of total joint replacements. Schwarz’s leading-edge thinking has helped the CMSR become the top-ranked orthopaedic research center in the United States.

The Medical Center has added 28 new endowed professorships to the School of Medicine and Dentistry since the start of its campaign, a part of The Meliora Challenge: The Campaign for the University of Rochester. By the Campaign’s end on June 30, 2016, the Medical Center plans to have 40 new endowed professorships.

For more on Dr. Schwarz and this professorship, read "The Future of Orthopaedics" in the second issue of Endeavor here.


Values and Action

The newest issue of Endeavor has already announced the news far and wide, yet it warrants repeating and further acknowledgement. As of February 20, we surpassed $900 million in commitments to The Meliora Challenge!

We have achieved 75 percent of our goal of $1.2 billion, through 70 percent of our Campaign, ending June 30, 2016. Reaching this milestone speaks volumes about the dedication of our Community of Leaders, which has been a continuous source of positive momentum. You have been particularly generous in the area of endowed professorships.

This issue of Fast Forward features the installation of the inaugural holder of the Richard and Margaret Burton Distinguished Professor in Orthopaedics. The Burton’s gift is among 28 new endowed professorships that have been added at the School of Medicine and Dentistry. During The Meliora Challenge we have nearly doubled the number of endowed positions in this school alone. Overall, your support has helped us add 61 endowed professorships across the University.

Our success bodes well for us reaching and blowing past our goal of 80 new and committed professorships in the Campaign. As our inspirational President Joel Seligman says, "Universities are built professorship by professorship." These gifts are one of the most lasting investments to sustain the quality of our education and research and the overall service of this University.

I am grateful for the leadership and generosity of our alumni, parents, and friends that have enabled us to celebrate these accomplishments. And we should all be proud to be part of such a supremely supportive community.


James D. Thompson
Senior Vice President
Chief Advancement Officer

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George Eastman Circle: More Than 2,500 and Still Growing

The sixth annual George Eastman Circle dinner at The Plaza in New York

Members of the George Eastman Circle gathered in New York City for their sixth annual dinner on March 14. Nearly 400 alumni, parents, and friends of the University filled the Grand Ballroom of The Plaza to celebrate what has been remarkable, continuous growth.

It was only three years ago that the George Eastman Circle was in this same venue and had a total of 1,331 memberships. During this short period the Eastman Circle has nearly doubled that number. The group’s extraordinary rate of expansion was a point University Trustee Nathan Moser ’75, national chair of the George Eastman Circle, celebrated in his remarks.

“Last year, at this very dinner, I announced to everyone a personal hope that we would close in on ‘ten times that number’ in 2013,” said Moser, reminding guests of the Circle’s original goal of 250. “And that’s exactly what we did. The George Eastman Circle recently surpassed 2,500 memberships.”

Attendees heard from other University leaders, including Board Chair Ed Hajim ’58, Trustee and Annual Giving Programs Chair Gwen Greene ’65, and President Joel Seligman. One of the highlights of the evening’s remarks was the announcement of a new giving program that provides members the opportunity to have an immediate impact on students through support of current-use, named scholarships. The George Eastman Circle Scholarship program will help support students like Melisa Diaz ’14, who also spoke at the event.

Diaz, a junior majoring in environmental science with minors in chemistry and Japanese, spoke on the experiences she has enjoyed as a student and how she hopes to "pay it forward" as others have done for her. In talking about her activities, she mentioned her participation in Strong Jugglers. Her many talents and ability to juggle fire torches, knives, and other items became a part of keynote speaker Walter Isaacson's address, which was focused on creativity. Isaacson is a world-renowned writer and biographer and the author of Steve Jobs.

George Eastman Circle members have now pledged nearly $50 million to the University. Members’ leadership support is helping the University move closer to the $130 million Annual Fund goal for The Meliora Challenge: The Campaign for the University of Rochester. To learn more about the George Eastman Circle, visit the new Web site at

To view the event’s photo gallery, click here.

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Ensuring an Ever Better University

What is an endowed professorship and how is one created? Who are some of the endowed professors at the University of Rochester? Why is establishing more of these positions one of the top priorities of The Meliora Challenge: The Campaign for the University of Rochester? These questions and others will be answered in a new Campaign booklet on the University’s greatest faculty resource.

This booklet will provide fundamental information on endowed professorships, including a brief history of their existence in higher education and at Rochester. Readers will also find profiles on endowed professors and some of the generous donors who have established this lasting support. Eight examples, spanning all areas of the University, highlight the distinguished work made possible by professorships, the motivation behind the donor’s gift, and the reasons why these educators and philanthropists believe endowed professorships are so important to the future of the University.

The endowed professorships booklet will soon be available to read online at

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