Honors & Awards

Amit Bar-Or, MD, FRCPC, director of the Center for Neuroinflammation and Experimental Therapeutics, chief of Multiple Sclerosis, and the Melissa and Paul Anderson President’s Distinguished Professor; Nina Luning Prak, MD’96, PhD’96, GME’99, an associate professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine; and Aimee S. Payne, MD, PhD, the Albert M. Kligman Associate Professor of Dermatology, were awarded a $4.5 million grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. This grant provides five years of support to a new Autoimmunity Center of Excellence, which will research B cells as drivers of life-threatening autoimmune diseases.

Daniel Dempsey, MD, MBA, FACS, chief of Gastrointestinal Surgery, assistant director of Perioperative Services for HUP, and a professor of Surgery, received the Philadelphia County Medical Society’s Strittmatter Award—its highest honor. The award is given to a PCMS physician who has made “valuable contributions to the healing arts.”

Gabor Egervari, MD, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow in Cell and Development Biology, has received funding from the Brody Family Medical Trust Fund fellowship for medical research in incurable diseases, given by the Philadelphia Foundation. The fellowship will fund two years of his molecular-level research on alcohol-related gene activity, brain changes, and learning.

Susan S. Ellenberg, PhD, director of the Biostatistics and Data Science Core for the Penn Center for AIDS and a research professor of Biostatistics and Medical Ethics & Health Policy, received the Florence N. David Award from the Committee of Presidents of Statistical Societies. This annual award is given to a female statistician whose contributions and collaborative leadership establish her as a role model for others in the field.

Raquel Gur, MD’80, PhD, director of the Lifespan Brain Institute, co-director of the Translational Neuroscience Center, vice chair of Research Development, the Karl and Linda Rickels Professor of Psychiatry, and a professor of Radiology; and Ruben Gur, PhD, director of the Brain Behavior Laboratory and a professor of Psychiatry, Radiology, and Neurology, were named Outstanding Translational Research Awardees by the Schizophrenia International Research Society. This recognition honors their efforts to revolutionize the approach to emotion and social cognition in health and disease.

Maayan Levy, PhD

Maayan Levy, PhD, an assistant professor of Microbiology, was one of 15 young faculty members to receive $300,000 in flexible funding from the Searle Scholars Program to support her work for three years. Levy’s lab is focused on understanding how intestinal epithelial cells serve as communicators between the gut microbiome and host immunity.

X. Sherry Liu, PhD, an associate professor of Orthopaedic Surgery and Bioengineering and director of the Micro-CT Imaging Core in the McKay Orthopaedic Research Lab, received the Kappa Delta Young Investigator Award from the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. The award is presented to researchers who have developed “outstanding manuscripts that focus on basic and/or clinical research related to the musculoskeletal system.”

Katherine L. Nathanson, MD’93, deputy director of the Abramson Cancer Center and director of Genetics at the Basser Center for BRCA, has been named the inaugural chair holder of the endowed Pearl Basser Professorship for BRCA-Related Research. In this role—created with a gift from longtime supporters Shari Basser Potter and Len Potter—Nathanson will strengthen the research efforts of the Basser Center an accelerate new discoveries.

Amol Navathe, MD

Amol Navathe, MD’10, PhD’08, co-director of the Healthcare Transformation Institute, associate director of the Center for Health Incentives and Behavioral Economics, and an assistant professor of Medical Ethics and Health Policy, has been appointed to the Medicare Payment Advisory Committee by the U.S. Government Accountability Office to analyze access to Medicare and the quality of services.

Ravi Parikh, MD, a fellow in Hematology-Oncology, received the Harry F. Bisel, MD, Endowed Young Investigator Award from the Conquer Cancer Foundation and the American Society of Clinical Oncology to support his research into checkpoint inhibitor therapy.

Trevor Penning, PhD, the Thelma Brown and Henry Charles Molinoff Professor of Pharmacology, a professor of Biochemistry & Biophysics and Obstetrics & Gynecology, and founding director of the Center of Excellence in Environmental Toxicology, was honored with the 2019 Founders’ Award by the American Chemical Society’s Division of Chemical Toxicology. He was recognized for providing outstanding and sustained service to the society and for his extensive research in the areas of chemical toxicology and environmental science.

Daniel J. Rader, MD, associate director of the Institute for Translational Medicine and Therapeutics, director of the Preventive Cardiovascular Program, chief of Translational Medicine and Human Genetics, the Seymour Gray Professor of Molecular Medicine, and a professor of Pharmacology, Pediatrics, and Medicine in Genetics, has been named a member of American Academy of Arts and Sciences in honor of his contributions to genetic research related to heart disease prevention.

Li Shen, PhD, a professor of Informatics, was named to the College of Fellows of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering in recognition of his work in developing “bioinformatics strategies for multidimensional brain imaging genomics.”

Robert H. Vonderheide, MD, DPhil, director of the Abramson Cancer Center and the John H. Glick Abramson Cancer Center Professor, earned a Stand Up to Cancer grant. The two-year grant provides $225,000 to fund his team’s research, which combines immunobiology and computational biology to analyze three datasets: short- and long-term pancreatic cancer survivors, primary resected pancreatic cancers, and mKRAS lung and colon cancers.

Kirk Wangensteen, MD, PhD,

Kirk Wangensteen, MD, PhD, an assistant professor of Gastroenterology and Genetics, was one of 10 researchers to receive the 2019 Beckman Young Investigator Award from the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation. This award, which comes with a $600,000 grant, fosters the invention of techniques and materials in the chemical and life sciences. Wangensteen is developing genetic methods to uncover new targets and treatments for MYC-driven liver cancer.

Alumni News


Stephen D. Silberstein, MD’67 has been appointed editor in chief of NeurologyLive, a multimedia platform that provides direct access to practice-changing news and insights in neurology.


Nolan H. Sigal, MD’77, PhD has joined the board of directors of Aileron Therapeutics, a biopharmaceutical company developing tumor-preventing and suppressing treatments.

Kathy L. Lampl, MD’79 has been appointed vice president of clinical development at LifeMax Laboratories, Inc., a private company focused on treating rare diseases with limited therapeutic options.

Kevin H. Mosser, MD’79 has joined SE Healthcare as a senior medical consultant. He most recently served as president and CEO of WellSpan Health in south-central Pennsylvania.

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Alan T. Wright, MD’82 has been appointed to the scientific advisory board of IDbyDNA, a metagenomics tech company. He is the chief medical officer at Roche Diagnostics.


Gary M. Phillips, MD’92 has been appointed to the board of directors of Zyla Life Sciences. He currently serves as president and CEO of OrphoMed, a biopharmaceutical company focused on gastrointestinal diseases.

Michael DeCastro Cabana, MD’93 has been appointed physician-in-chief at Children’s Hospital at the Montefiore Health System, and university chair of Pediatrics at Montefiore and Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

Alan J. Jacobs, MD’95, PhD has been appointed as chief medical officer and president of Hemostemix Inc., a biotech company that develops and commercializes blood derived therapeutics.

Tracey E. Cohen, MD’96 has been named the new chief clinical officer at CleanSlate Outpatient Addiction Medicine, which provides treatment for the chronic disease of addiction.

Lawrence M. Rhein, MD’96 has been appointed chairman of Pediatrics at UMass Memorial, the largest medical provider in Central Massachusetts.


Adam G. Arnofsky, MD’98 has been appointed chief of Cardiothoracic Surgery at Englewood Health. He has been director of the hospital’s Cardiac Surgery Services since 2009.


John Leaman, MD’01 has been appointed chief financial officer of Impel NeuroPharma, a biopharmaceutical company that develops products for central nervous system disorders.

George Lin, MD’03, PhD has been appointed director of Dermatopathology and vice-chair of Anatomic Pathology at Albany Medical College.

Gabor Vari, MD’04 has been appointed to the board of directors of Cancer Support Community Los Angeles, a nonprofit network of cancer support. He is currently CEO of California Medical Evaluators.

Adam S. Crystal, MD’06, PhD has been appointed chief medical officer at C4 Therapeutics, a developer of therapies that target disease-relevant proteins to stop the spread of disease.

Joneigh Khaldun, MD’06 has been appointed as the chief medical executive and chief deputy director for health at the Michigan State Department of Health and Human Services.


Robert Iannone, MD, MSCE, GME’12 has been appointed executive vice president of research and development at Jazz Pharmaceuticals, a biopharmaceutical company and a leader in sleep medicine and oncology research.



Philip P. Thompson, MD’41, a physician; June 19. He began his medical career at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, then completed his residency at Massachusetts General Hospital. He was a medical officer in the U.S. Army, earning both a Bronze Star and a medical infantry badge. Thompson practiced internal medicine and rheumatology at Maine Medical Center for 48 years and self-published a number of books.

Volmar A. Mereschak, MD’45, an obstetrician and gynecologist; March 11. After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, he continued his training at Grace-New Haven Community Hospital, Kings County Hospital, and Lincoln Hospital. Mereschak served in the U.S. Navy in the South Pacific. He was chief of Obstetrics & Gynecology at Warren Hospital for 34 years, then opened a private practice.

Winfield T. Moyer, MD’47, a pediatrician; April 5. After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, he continued his medical training at Hartford Hospital. Moyer was a pediatrician for 38 years and served as president of the Manchester Memorial Hospital staff for two years. He also volunteered at his local community wellness center and served on boards at the Lutz Museum and Early Childhood Center.

Frank B. Johnston, BA’39, GME’49, an internist; March 21. He attended both the University of Pennsylvania and Thomas Jefferson University Medical School. He served as a captain (surgeon) in World War II and was stationed in the Pacific. Johnston, who celebrated 101 years, enjoyed a long private practice in medicine.

Samuel A. Youngman, Jr.

Samuel A. Youngman, Jr., MD’49, an aerospace medicine specialist; April 4. After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and establishing his practice, Youngman led a successful career in the U.S. Navy. He was a flight surgeon, was named senior medical officer on the USS Wasp, cared for the Gemini IV astronauts, and held positions in Hawaii, California, the Philippines, Korea, and Saudi Arabia. He later obtained his master’s degree in public health and completed a residency in Aerospace Medicine. He also conducted research in Antarctica, where a mountain is now named after him.


Joseph A. Libbon, Jr., MD’50, a psychiatrist; April 2. He served at a military hospital during World War II, then received his medical degree at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. In 1980, he was named clinical director of a community mental health center at St. Mary’s Hospital. Libbon held academic appointments at Tufts University School of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, and Albany Medical School.

Victor Birch Rambo, MD’52, GME’58, a physician; March 18. He graduated from Kodaikanal International School in India, then served in the U.S. Navy. After attending the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and completing his surgical training, he practiced in North Carolina. From 1964 to 1992, Rambo and his family served as missionaries in central Africa.

John C. Carson, MD’54, a physician; April 17. After working as a laboratory tech in the U.S. Army, he attended Yale University and the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. Carson completed his internship, residency, and fellowship at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (HUP). He practiced cardiology at Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla for more than 50 years and served a 48-year tenure as a physician at Lake Mohonk Mountain House.

William C. Gilkey, MD’54, an obstetrician and gynecologist; April 26. He graduated from Westminster College after serving in the U.S. Navy. He attended the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, then completed his internship and residency at Henry Ford Hospital. Gilkey worked as an OB/GYN for 40 years and served as president of the Lenawee County Medical Society and the Adrian Board of Education.

William T. Goulburn, MD’54, GM’67, an orthopedic surgeon; March 19. After attending the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, he completed his residency at Hartford Hospital and practiced as a general practitioner and obstetrician for eight years. In 1966, Goulburn completed a residency in Orthopedic Surgery at Graduate Hospital, then worked as an orthopedic surgeon for many years in New Jersey.

Gerald K. Schoenfeld, MD’54, an anesthesiologist; March 5. He graduated from Cornell University and received his medical degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. After serving in the U.S. Navy as an officer stationed in Japan, Schoenfeld became a professor of anesthesiology at the University of Oklahoma-Tulsa.

Richard G. Lathrop, MD’55, a dermatologist; May 9. He obtained his medical degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, then served two years with the U.S. Army Medical Corps. Lathrop completed his residency at the Skin and Cancer Hospital and started his practice in 1962, never missing a day of work in 40 years.

Harold E. Paulus

Harold E. Paulus, MD’55, professor emeritus, UCLA; April 5. He earned his medical degree at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, then served in the U.S. Army Medical Corps. He completed his residency and two fellowships at the Wadsworth Hospital Veterans Administration Center in Los Angeles, UCLA Medical Center, and Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. He led a long career in medicine at UCLA Medical Center and earned numerous honors and professional society memberships.

Brooks W. Gilmore, MD’56, a physician; April 5. After attending the University Pennsylvania School of Medicine and completing his residency at Pennsylvania Hospital, he joined the U.S. Army Medical Corps. Gilmore later returned to Greensboro, where he practiced for more than 50 years. He was named chief of Medicine and president of the medical board at Wesley Long Hospital, and served as an associate clinical professor of Medicine at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine.

Richard A. Blasband, MD’57, a psychiatrist; March 23. He received his medical training at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and Yale Medical School, where he served as chief psychiatric resident. Blasband practiced bio-psychotherapy for 50 years and served as the president of the American College of Orgonomy. He later established his healing practice—the Center of Functional Research—which he continued until his death.

Clarence M. Gilbert, Jr., C’53, MD’57, a cardiologist; April 17. He attended the University of Pennsylvania for his undergraduate studies, continued his education in the School of Medicine, and completed his medical training at HUP. He served as a captain and staff physician at the Orlando Air Force Base Hospital. Gilbert practiced privately until 1993, and he held an abundance of medical staff, academic, and boards appointments.

Dick Janeway, MD’58, president emeritus, Wake Forest University Health Sciences; March 17. He attended the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, then served as a flight surgeon and captain in the U.S. Air Force. In 1966, Janeway joined the faculty of Wake Forest School of Medicine, where he served in roles such as a professor of Neurology, acting chairman of Neurology, dean, vice president for health affairs, and executive vice president for health affairs. He also received the university’s highest honor, the Medallion of Merit.

Gilbert Seigworth, MD’58, an obstetrician and gynecologist; April 23. After attending the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and completing his medical training, he served in the U.S. Air Force. Seigworth was later named president of the Medical Society for Ideal Hospital, taught at Binghamton University, and wrote several scholarly articles. He and his wife also curated and donated a substantial collection of medical artifacts.

Russell D. Snyder, Jr., MD’58, a pediatric neurologist; May 22. After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania Medical School, he continued his training at Bryn Mawr Hospital and the University of Colorado. He spent two years in the U.S. Army, then accepted a job at the University of New Mexico Medical School. Snyder was also an examiner for the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology and received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Child Neurology Society.

John F. Gehret, MD’59, an obstetrician and gynecologist; March 14. He attended Williams College and the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. Following his residency at Penn, he began a practice in Wilmington with his father. Gehret practiced from 1963 to 1999, with a brief interruption in 1966 when he was drafted into the U.S. Air Force.

Ralph W. Hamilton, MD’59, a plastic surgeon; April 23. He graduated with honors from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and was later named associate chief of Plastic Surgery at Penn in 1980. He practiced at HUP, Penn Presbyterian Medical Center, and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) until 1996.

Grant Morrow III, MD’59, a pediatrician; May 18. He graduated from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine with the Pediatric Prize and completed his training at the University of Colorado Denver General Hospital and CHOP. Morrow worked at HUP and CHOP for 18 years, and at Columbus Children’s Hospital for 15 years. He also served in roles at the University of Arizona and Ohio State University College of Medicine.

Morton J. Robinson, BA’53, GME’59, pathology and laboratory medicine; May 21. After earning his medical degree at Jefferson Medical College, he earned a Certificate of Pathology from the University of Pennsylvania. Robinson served as a captain in the U.S. Air Force, then practiced at Mount Sinai Medical Center for nearly 50 years, where he was named chair and director of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine.


Carl B. Weston, MD’60, a medical director, Agrace Hospice Care; March 20. He graduated from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and completed his residency in Chicago before returning to Wisconsin to practice alongside his father. Over six decades, Weston served in internal medicine and administrative medicine roles in the Jackson Clinic, Meriter Hospital, the University of Wisconsin Medical School, and Agrace Hospice Care.

Jay Jenkins, MD’61, a hematologist; May 19. He attended the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, then completed his internship, residency, and fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh Hospital. He served as a captain in the U.S. Air Force, then served on the staff at St. Vincent Hospital, the VA Hospital of Erie, and Hamot Hospital. Morrow co-founded the Regional Cancer Center, where he treated patients for over 20 years.

James P. Tracey, MD’63, a gastroenterologist; March 12. After earning his degree at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, he served in the U.S. Army Medical Corps for three years in Vietnam. After discharge, Tracey returned to Connecticut to establish his affiliation with Norwalk Hospital. He practiced for over 35 years, served as an associate editor for the American Journal of Gastroenterology, and taught at Yale University School of Medicine.

Louis S. Zeiger, MD’67, a nuclear medicine physician; Sept. 14, 2017. He worked as a physicist at the GE Space Science Laboratory before pursuing medicine at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He made great strides in Nuclear Medicine, an emerging specialty at the time, and served as division chair for Nuclear Medicine at Cooper University Hospital for nearly 30 years.

William W. Resinger, MD’69, a radiologist; May 21. After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, he spent six years working in his hometown’s emergency department. After serving in the U.S. Army National Guard, Resinger relocated to complete his residency at the University of Michigan. He then moved again to Alaska, where he led a nearly 20-year career at Palmer Valley Hospital.


Stephen M. Sachs, MD’71, a physician; April 16. He was a graduate of Columbia College and the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He was a U.S. Navy veteran and a patriot. Sachs was a partner and physician with Neurological Associates, as well as a passionate supporter of the arts.


Hester Choi

Hester Choi, MD’94, a gastroenterologist; May 2019. She graduated from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and conducted gene therapy research in the lab of James Wilson, MD, PhD. Choi practiced for nearly a decade, focusing on inflammatory bowel disease. In 2018, she enrolled in a master’s program in clinical research and planned to obtain her PhD in cancer genomics.


Denis S. Drummond, MD, FRSC, professor emeritus at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine; June 18. As a professor and head of Pediatric Orthopedics at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, Drummond co-invented the Wisconsin compression system to correct scoliosis. He was later named chief of Orthopedics at CHOP and a professor of Orthopedic Surgery at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He served as president of the Pediatric Orthopedic Society of North America and the Scoliosis Research Society—later receiving the society’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

Ralph W. Hamilton, MD. See Class of 1959.


Legacy Giving

Helping Patients Achieve Their Own


After beating cancer twice with the help of Penn Medicine surgeons, Joseph Patrick Rees, G’89, a veteran of the United States Army, wasn’t worried when a lymph node sample tested positive. “I know some statistics, and I’m thinking, one lymph node out of 32 is a pretty good result,” he recalls. Rees was referred to David Mintzer, MD, a hematologist and medical oncologist at Penn, for a consultation.

Mintzer was adamant that Rees take the news seriously, so he began chemotherapy treatment over a six-month period. “There’s one thing he said to me that I’ll always remember: ‘You don’t work for me. I work for you.’ And he proved that to me at every turn,” Rees says.

After he was given a clean bill of health, Rees began reflecting on the “first class, leading-edge care” he received and how others may not be as financially fortunate as himself. In 2017, he worked with the Office of Planned Giving to establish the Dr. David Mintzer Patient Comfort Fund at the Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania with an outright gift and a bequest in his will. This fund helps patients financially while they’re going through therapies. “I thought about those who don’t have the money to cover their treatment, who have special needs, who need rides to and from appointments—I want to make sure people aren’t struggling during this stressful time,” he says.

By establishing the fund now, Rees has the opportunity to make contributions during his lifetime and experience the joy of seeing his gifts in action. In addition, a future gift will come from his estate. Rees has chosen to make current gifts by utilizing the Charitable IRA Rollover (“Rollover”). The Rollover allows donors who are 70 ½ years or older to support their charity of choice by directly rolling over up to $100,000 from a traditional IRA account. The Rollover can be applied to your annual Required Minimum Distribution, and the gift is 100 percent tax-free.

“Establishing this fund through gifts now, in addition to my estate, is a way for me to help current and future patients benefit from the same medical attention I received, while also honoring Dr. Mintzer for his exceptional care today,” he says.

Planned giving is often described as the final piece of a philanthropic puzzle. Figuring out how this important piece can work best for you, your family, and your philanthropic goals is what we do best. If you are a donor who wants to give through a retirement plan (IRA, 401(k), 403(b), etc.) or through the Charitable IRA Rollover, please contact Christine S. Ewan, JD, Senior Executive Director of Development, at 215-898-9486 or cewan@upenn.edu.

For more information, please visit our website at: www.pennmedicine.org/plannedgiving.


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