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Chronicle Of Giving Medical College of Virginia Foundation Summer 2015

Building on Tradition VCUMCV Foundation


Chronicle Of Giving §

The Chronicle of Giving is published twice a year by the MCV Foundation for alumni and friends of the Medical College of Virginia Campus of Virginia Commonwealth University. © 2015 MCV Foundation Contributors: Angela L. Flagg, Nan L. Johnson, Pamela D. Lepley, Lucy W. Mitzner, Lauren Z. Moore, Caitlin P. Powell, Julia B. Ratliff, and Brian S. Thomas Design: Kevin E. Schindler Photography: As noted

Contents 1

A Letter from Chairman Johnson

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MCV Campus News

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Harper’s Hope

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Pauley Heart Center Consortium

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Top Ranked Hospital in Virginia

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The MCV Foundation’s mission is to inspire and steward philanthropy throughout the MCV Campus of Virginia Commonwealth University. Chartered in 1949, the MCV Foundation works in partnership with alumni and friends of MCV Schools, Hospitals and Massey Cancer Center.

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We support the institution in its quest: • To preserve and restore health • To seek the cause and cure of diseases • To educate those who would serve humanity

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Through your donations, the MCV Foundation provides integral support to the dedicated teachers, clinicians, researchers and students whose efforts place the MCV Campus among the world’s leading academic medical centers providing technically superb and compassionate care to patients. The MCV Foundation supports the education, research and clinical care mission of our MCV Campus Partners: School of Allied Health Professions, School of Dentistry, School of Medicine, School of Nursing, School of Pharmacy, Massey Cancer Center, MCV Alumni Association and MCV Hospitals.

Chronicle Of Giving Medical College of Virginia Foundation Summer 2015

Building on Tradition VCUMCV Foundation

On the Cover

School of Medicine

The Egyptian Building in the heart of the MCV Campus.

Cover photo: Kevin E. Schindler

Egyptian Building photo this page and Chairman Gail W. Johnson photo next page: Kevin E. Schindler


MCV Foundation

MCV Foundation Board of Trustees 2015-2016

Dear Friends: June 30th marked the end of another successful year for the MCV Foundation. By all measures, 2014-15 proved to be the year of unexpected transitions, reconfirmation of our mission, and remarkable triumphs. Last August our Board reluctantly accepted the resignation of Dr. Bill Kotti, who served the Foundation as President for the past 7 years. While waiting for our Search Committee to find our new President, we were so fortunate to have Brian Thomas immediately serve as our Interim President. Under Brian’s able leadership and with the support of the MCV Foundation’s extraordinarily committed staff, the Foundation has Gail W. Johnson, R.N. not only remained focused on our mission, we have had a very good year! Our assets now approach $500 million! In December we were saddened by the sudden news that Dr. Sheldon Retchin, CEO of VCU Health System and Senior Vice President of Health Sciences, accepted a similar position at Ohio State University. Dr. Retchin, who spent 32 years on the MCV Campus and served as Chief Executive Officer of the VCU Health Systems since 2003, left VCU Medical Center in February. Once again, the MCV Foundation Board of Trustees rallied to show support and ensure stability during this transition in leadership. We are so pleased that Dr. Jerry Strauss, Dean of the School of Medicine, was appointed as Interim CEO of VCU Health System and Interim Vice President for Health Sciences. In June, the VCU Board of Visitors announced that Dr. Marsha D. Rappley will serve as the Vice President for Health Sciences and CEO of VCU Health System, effective August 15th. She has served as the Dean of the Michigan State University College of Human Medicine for the past 10 years and is a tenured professor of pediatrics and human development. The MCV Foundation coordinated its search for the new Foundation President with the Health System search. Now that Dr. Rappley has been appointed, we are expecting the MCV Foundation President to be named by early fall. Strategic Operating Plan The Foundation Board held a planning retreat in September to review and finalize our strategic operating plan. Under the leadership of Trustees Charlie Bryan and Liz Buono, our Board approved a plan in November that provides strategic goals and objectives for the Foundation for the next two years. Our Board will follow this operating plan until a more detailed strategic plan is developed under the leadership of our new President. This process helped our Board identify our challenges, reconfirm our priorities, and better define our aspirations as we move forward in spite of the transitions that came our way. New Trustees and Officers Elected During our May 11th Board Meeting, the MCV Foundation elected six new Trustees: Dr. George Burke, M’70, George P. Emerson, H. Frederick T. Moore, Robert F. Norfleet, Jr., Dr. Ghulam Qureshi, HS ’71, and Dr. Kit Tucker Sullivan, D’83. Each of these individuals brings an important skill set to the Foundation. We also approved the Slate of Officers for 2016. I will serve one more year as Chairman of the Board, and Harry Thalhimer will fill the role of Chair Elect. Darius Johnson will continue to serve as Treasurer and Charles Crone will continue to serve as Corporate Secretary. Fundraising During the 2014-15 Fiscal Year new gifts and pledges to the MCV Campus topped $70 million and the Foundation’s total assets reached $492 million. Massey Cancer Center successfully concluded its $100 million Research for Life Campaign on June 30 with just over $108 million in gifts. The MCV Foundation is in the final stages of hiring a Director of Gift Planning to assist with planned giving across the MCV Campus. The Foundation continues to work with each of the MCV Campus schools, units, and programs on special fundraising initiatives. Thank You I am looking forward to another exciting year for the MCV Foundation. On behalf of my fellow Trustees I want to express my gratitude to all of our alumni and friends. Your ongoing support continues to enrich the lives of our students, patients, and faculty, and has carried us through this challenging year of many transitions. Sincerely,

Gail W. Johnson, R.N. Chairman MCV Foundation Board of Trustees

John O. Beckner, R.Ph. Katherine C. Bobbitt, Ed.D. Roger L. Boevé Charles F. Bryan, Jr., Ph.D. Elizabeth Whalley Buono, J.D. George W. Burke, III, M.D. Charles M. Caravati, Jr., M.D. Herbert A. Claiborne, III, J.D. Richard M. Clary, M.D. Judith B. Collins, W.H.N.P. William D. Covington, D.D.S. Charles F. Crone George P. Emerson, Jr. William M. Ginther Jeffrey H. Gumenick L. Preston Hale, R.Ph. JoAnne K. Henry, Ed.D. Basil Leonard Hurst, III Darius A. Johnson Gail W. Johnson, R.N. Lee B. Krumbein David A. Lyons John W. Martin Ronald H. McFarlane J. Keith Middleton, CPA H. Frederick T. Moore Robert F. Norfleet, Jr. Rebecca T. Perdue John F. Philips, D.D.S. Ghulam D. Qureshi, M.D. James H. Revere, Jr., D.D.S. Bertha C. Rolfe, R.Ph. John W. Slyh, CPA T.K. Somanath Ellen E. Spong James H. Starkey, III Kit T. Sullivan, D.D.S. Joseph M. Teefey Harry R. Thalhimer George W. Vetrovec, M.D. Richard P. Wenzel, M.D., M.Sc. Michelle Y. Whitehurst-Cook, M.D. Judith Forehand Woods Harold F. Young, M.D.

Ex Officio Members: Michael Rao, Ph.D. President of VCU Marsha D. Rappley, M.D. Chief Executive Officer, VCU Health System & Vice President, VCU Health Sciences

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MCV Campus News

Photo: (left to right) Dr. Fred Shaia, Rose Shaia, Dr. John Nestler, Chair of the Department of Internal Medicine, Ed Shaia, Dr. Robert Centor, Chair of the American College of Physicians Board of Regents, Marie Shaia, and Dr. David Sarrett, Dean of the School of Dentistry gather for a luncheon following the Harry & Zackia Shaia Memorial Lecture.

Photo: University Relations

Shaia Lecture Continues Tradition of Excellence The Department of Internal Medicine hosted the annual Harry & Zackia Shaia Memorial Lecture on March 26. The Shaia Lecture was established at MCV by Ed Shaia and Richard Shaia in 1965 in honor of their parents. Each year a nationally known physician is invited to campus to participate in Grand Rounds and deliver a lecture to students and faculty. Robert Centor, M.D., Chair of the American College of Physicians Board of Regents and Regional Dean, University of AlabamaHuntsville Regional Medical Campus, was this year’s speaker. Dr. Centor’s presentation was titled “Learning How to Think Like a Physician.” Dr. Centor completed his undergraduate work at the University of Virginia in 1971, and graduated from the Medical College of Virginia in 1975. He then joined the Internal Medicine residency program at MCV, eventually becoming Chief

Resident and joining the faculty of the Division of General Internal Medicine in 1981. Dr. Centor served as the Program Director of the Internal Medicine Residency Training Program for five years, and subsequently served for five years as Chairman of the Division of General and Internal Medicine. Dr. John E. Nestler, Chair of the Department of Internal Medicine said, “We are so pleased that Dr. Centor was able to join us for the Shaia Lecture. Dr. Centor is a national leader in the medical profession and a good friend of MCV.” Following the lecture Ed Shaia and his wife, Marie, joined Dr. Centor; Dr. Fred Shaia and his wife, Rose; Dr. Nestler; Dr. David Sarrett, Dean of the School of Dentistry; Dr. Stephanie Call, Associate Dean for Education for the Department of Internal Medicine; and several residents for a lunch hosted at the MCV Foundation.

MCV Foundation Staff Update Lucy W. Mitzner was promoted from Development Coordinator to Assistant Director of Donor and Board Relations in February. In her new role, Lucy serves as the staff liaison with the MCV Foundation Board of Trustees and oversees stewardship activities for the Foundation. Lucy joined the MCV Foundation staff in December 2013. She earned her B.S. in Early Childhood Education from the University of Maryland and her M.S.ed in Literacy from Bank Street College of Education. Elizabeth Bunting joined the MCV Foundation in March as Director of Special Programs. She assists the Foundation with initiatives, events, and projects that help support the MCV Campus fundraising priorities. Elizabeth has more than 10 years of development experience at several institutions in the Washington, D.C. area. Elizabeth earned her B.A. in Art History from Hollins University. Maria W. Snyder was hired in April as the Executive Assistant to the President of the Foundation. Previously, Maria served in a variety of administrative positions in operations, special events, and finance. Maria earned her B.A. in Communications from Virginia Tech.

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Chronicle of Giving Summer 2015


MCV Campus News

School of Nursing Dedicates Pavilion The VCU School of Nursing held a ribbon cutting ceremony on May 11th for the new Younger Pavilion made possible by a donation from longtime school supporters Janet Younger, Ph.D., RN, CPNP, professor emerita, and her husband Carter. Jean Giddens, Ph.D., RN, FAAN, dean and professor, said a structure was needed for students, faculty, and staff to enjoy the school’s garden during the warmer and wetter months. “It became a goal of mine to figure out how to do something out here, and that’s where Janet Younger and Carter came in. This new pavilion has been built thanks to their generosity and it will allow our students, faculty, and staff a place to come outside and enjoy the garden,” Giddens said. In addition to School of Nursing faculty, staff, alumni, and friends, attendees included members of the MCV Foundation Board of Trustees, who were at the school for an annual meeting held earlier that afternoon, and VCU President Michael Rao. In thanking the Youngers for their continued commitment to VCU and its School of Nursing, Rao said, “Janet and Carter are

truly people of great wisdom. You both have been enormously successful. You are both sensitively connected to other people, sincerely care about other people, and you want them to have a chance to do as well as you have, and for that reason you give.” Janet retired as associate dean of academic affairs in 2009 after serving the VCU School of Nursing for more than 40 years. She earned both her bachelor’s in nursing and master’s in maternal-child nursing from VCU. Janet has made a tremendous impact on the VCU School of Nursing, nursing education, and the nursing profession. In fact, the school’s auditorium also bears her name since the Youngers have been steadfast champions of the school and Janet has exemplified nursing excellence throughout her career. Photo: (left to right) Gail Johnson, MCV Foundation Board Chairman, Dr. Michael Rao, VCU President, Dr. Jean Giddens, Dean of the School of Nursing, Dr. Janet Younger, Carter Younger, and Dr. Jerome Strauss, Interim Vice President for Health Sciences, VCU, CEO, VCUHS, and Dean of the School of Medicine dedicate the Younger Pavilion at the VCU School of Nursing. Photo: University Relations

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MCV Campus News

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MCV Society

ore than 100 MCV Society members and guests gathered for a reception at the Maymont Nature & Visitor Center on April 29th. Brian Thomas, Interim President of the MCV Foundation, welcomed the guests to this annual event and thanked them for their support. He reported that the MCV Society inducted 12 new members during the past year to bring the total membership up to 342. Commenting on the impact of the MCV Society on the medical campus, Mr. Thomas said, “I am constantly inspired by the generous support that the MCV Foundation receives from alumni and friends. Planned giving is an increasingly important component of our fundraising efforts.� During the event, Norman Burns, Maymont Foundation Executive Director, gave an overview of the history of Maymont. Following the reception the guests were invited to tour the Nature Center.

Gathered At Maymont

The MCV Foundation created the MCV Society in 1994 to recognize and extend gratitude to all those individuals who have made provisions in their estate plans to support any of the MCV Campus schools or units. The MCV Society includes the Lawrence Society, named for Dr. Walter Lawrence, Jr., founding Director of the Massey Cancer Center. Planned gifts of MCV Society members make a significant impact in supporting and improving every part of the MCV Campus. The total impact of these planned gifts for all of the MCV Society members tops $100 million.

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If you would like more information about how you can join the MCV Society, please contact Brian Thomas, Interim President, at the MCV Foundation (804) 828-0067 or bsthomas@vcu.edu.

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Event photos: CSI Studios

Chronicle of Giving Summer 2015

Photos 1: (From left to right) MCV Foundation Trustee and MCV Society Member Bertha Rolfe, VCU School of Medicine Dean Jerome Strauss, Cathy Strauss, and Robin Partin enjoy conversation at the reception. 2: MCV Society members Dr. Victor Yanchick, Donna Yanchick, Janice Schalow, and Al Schalow take in the lovely evening at Maymont. 3: MCV Foundation Trustee John Beckner and MCV Society members Mary Doswell and Dr. John Doswell pause for a photo with Gail Johnson, MCV Foundation Board Chairman and MCV Society member and Dr. Cecil Drain, Dean of the School of Allied Health Professions. 4: Dr. Lou Harris and Sharon Larkins-Pederson, MCV Society members share a laugh together. 5: MCV Foundation Trustee and new MCV Society Member Judi Woods and MCV Foundation Interim President Brian Thomas enjoy the reception.


Family and Friends Tee-Off for

Harper’s Hope Fund O

On June 5th, the family and friends of Victor Harper held the first annual Harper’s Hope Golf Tournament at the Country

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Club of Virginia. More than 100 golfers participated in the inaugural event. Following a round of golf the players joined their spouses, guests, and other friends for a reception and auction. Proceeds from this event will support the Harper’s Hope Fund for ALS at the MCV Foundation. ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig’s Disease) is a disease of the parts of the nervous system that control voluntary muscle movement. In ALS, motor neurons (nerve cells that control muscle cells) are gradually lost. As these motor neurons are lost, the muscles they control become weak and

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then nonfunctional. The Harper’s Hope Fund was established by the late Victor Harper and his family to help cover costs of clinic expansions, research, patient care, and education efforts at VCU Medical Center. The Harper’s Hope Fund has four goals: 1) Expand the VCU multi-disciplinary ALS clinic, 2) Create an Assistance Program to support patients and their families, 3) Establish a translational research program targeting ALS, and 4) Create an educational and outreach program. The Multidisciplinary VCU Neuromuscular and ALS clinics

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offer specialized care for patients with ALS, Muscular Dystrophy, and other neuromuscular diseases. The physicians, nurses and other health care staff are dedicated to improving the quality of care for patients throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia diagnosed with neuromuscular diseases. To learn more about the Harper’s Hope Fund for ALS, please contact the MCV Foundation at (804) 828-9734.

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Photos 1: Vic Harper’s family members gather for this event to help raise critical funds for the ALS Clinic at VCU Medical Center, (from left to right) Kathryn Harper, Michael Derrer, Frances Derrer, Anne Harper, Landon Harper, and Jaime Harper. 2: Landon and Anne Harper share warm memories with Dick Fisher, longtime friend and golfing partner of Vic. 3: Trigg Brown, Maureen Gallihugh, Pat Gregory, and Moncure Geho break for a photo on The Country Club of Virginia Tuckahoe course. 4: Anne Harper smiles with Dr. Scott Vota, VCU Chair of Neurology and ALS Clinic Director, and his wife Kristie. Event photos: CSI Studios

Chronicle of Giving Summer 2015

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VCU Pauley Heart Center Consortium

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On Thursday April 23 the VCU Pauley Heart Center welcomed over 40 guests to the Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens to celebrate the annual Pauley Heart Center Consortium event. The evening was filled with great fellowship of supporters of the Heart Center and remarks about the progress and achievements from the previous year. The evening began with Dr. Kenneth Ellenbogen, Chair of the

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Division of Cardiology, sharing the Ellie Whelan story, a video presentation of a teenager who collapsed on stage during drama class with what was later found as a genetic heart defect. Ellie’s story of recovery is incredible and showcases the breadth and depth of clinical care offered by the Pauley Heart Center, from therapeutic hypothermia to our nationally renowned electrophysiology practice. “Ellie’s story is every parent’s nightmare. Her condition was unknown prior to her arrival at the Medical Center and we worked tirelessly to understand the drivers behind her episode so that we could get her back to the life of a teenager and make sure she has a long and productive

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life ahead of her,” said Dr. Ellenbogen. The 2015 Consortium featured presentations by Drs. Zachary Gertz, from Cardiology, and Dan Tang, from Cardiac Surgery. These physicians have elevated the Heart Center’s ability to serve patients with novel interventions for structural heart disease and heart failure. Dr. Gertz presented new and novel interventions for individuals not eligible for open heart surgery. His videos 3

and expert descriptions of devices like the TAVR (Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement) and Parachute devices wowed the audience with their impact on serving patients who are not able to have open heart surgery due to a variety of factors. Dr. Gertz has developed quite a testing ground for new interventions as he builds the structural heart disease program that he directs. His success in bringing these trials to the Medical Center gives more options for patients, and connects to the Medical Center’s mission of clinical and translational research. Dr. Tang spoke about the future for heart transplantation and the pervasiveness of congestive heart failure (CHF). This disease impacts nearly 6 million people in the United States. This number is set to increase as the prevalence of diabetes and other co-morbidities rise. The number of heart transplants at VCU has

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steadily risen since the early nineties with over 20 transplants last year. Tang shared that as the field progresses and interventions like LVADs (left ventricular assist devices) and total artificial hearts

Chronicle of Giving Summer 2015


MCV Campus News are on the rise, patients will be better prepared to receive a donor heart and their improved health during the bridge to transplant will support better outcomes. The seamless connection between cardiology and cardiothoracic surgery at VCU is not commonly found at other institutions. Dr. Vigneshwar Kasirajan, Surgery Chairman, said, “We have the best collaboration between our divisions and it is because of that connection that programs like our heart failure cardiology team and our cardiac surgeons are timing interventions properly, working together to best support

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outcomes, and conduct research that will improve and inform clinical care in our community and beyond.” Dr. Ellenbogen shared news that a new director of the Cardiac Catheterization Lab will be named soon, filling Dr. George Vetrovec’s very large shoes. Dr. Ellenbogen said, “… Dr. Vetrovec’s mentorship of this new leader will ensure that VCU remains a leader in cardiac catheterization which is our steadfast goal.” Dr. Kasirajan is planning to hire a new Cardiothoracic Division Chair, a position he vacated when he assumed the role as Chair of Surgery. Institutional leadership is also nearing the end of the search for the new Pauley Heart Center Director, a position that

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will take the research mission of the Center to the next level of regional and national prominence. As a token of gratitude, each Consortium guest received a copy of “Every Second Counts: The Extraordinary Race to Transplant the First Human Heart,” by author Donald McRae. In the book, which reads more like a novel than a nonfiction account of the race to successful heart transplantation, McRae details the work of surgeons across the world who were working diligently to advance surgical science. The Medical College of Virginia is discussed prominently as McRae chronicled the work of MCV greats like Dr. David Hume and Dr. Richard Lower. In closing the program Dr. Kasirajan thanked the attendees for the support of the Heart Center and urged the group to, “… remember that we do not just have a history rich with advancement in cardiac care, but that we are well positioned for future advancements because of the investments that are being made by the guests in this room, and the many who are with us in spirit. On behalf of the Pauley Heart Center Team, thank you, we are more grateful that you will ever know.” If you have interest in learning more about the Pauley Heart Center or becoming a Consortium member, contact Lauren Moore in the VCU Medical

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Photos: 1: Ken Wright and VCU School of Medicine Dean Dr. Jerome Strauss discuss the annual Consortium before the program begins. 2: Chair of the Division of Cardiology Dr. Kenneth Ellenbogen shares a laugh with Hermann and Michele Buerger. 3: Charlotte Roberts speaks with another attendee at the reception. 4: Merrill Plaisted, Paul Dresser, Director of the Cardiac Catheterization Lab Dr. George Vetrovec, and Julie Baxter enjoy the night at Lewis Ginter. 5: Dr. Ellenbogen, Carolyn Green, Barbara Clark, and Dr. Strauss pause for a photo. 6: Ann Reed, Phyllis Ellenbogen, Charles Reed, and Muschi Fisher listen to Dr. Ellenbogen’s riveting story. 7: Kathleen and Curtis Monk speak with presenters Dr. Dan Tang and Dr. Vigneshwar Kasirajan, and Dr. Sucharitha Vigneshwar.

Center Office of Development at (804) 828-3632. Chronicle of Giving Summer 2015

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Shining Knight Gala Supports Trauma Center violence in our community and fund the injury “When you get out of here, you owe me a dance,” and violence prevention activities of doctors, care partner Trarell White told 80 year-old Bette nurses, and social workers. Wallerstein as he cared for her in the Intensive Care The night’s celebration didn’t end with the Unit of VCU Medical Center. A few weeks before, harrowing patient story. During the evening, a Bette was struggling to survive after a serious personal letter by Governor Terry McAuliffe was automobile crash. The entire passenger side of the read, lauding the VCU Medical Center for the vehicle Bette was traveling in was crushed, causing outstanding care that the Trauma teams provide grave injuries – multiple fractures, head, spine, and to patients every day. The Gala also marked the abdominal injuries, cuts and abrasions. But the announcement of a gift from Dr. John Reaveymost critical issue was her inability to breathe due to massive chest trauma. Lifesaving measures were Bette Wallerstein and Trarell White Cantwell, of the VCU Neurosurgery Department, and his wife Dr. Jordana Kron, a cardiologist at initiated by EMS providers from Tuckahoe Rescue the VCU Pauley Heart Center. Their gift created an endowment Squad in the field and Mike Hanville, paramedic, notes, “There to support injury and violence prevention programs in honor was no question in our minds, we had to get her to VCU.” of one of Dr. Reavey-Cantwell’s former patients, Cole Sydnor. The VCU Medical Center Trauma team went into action. The gift also named the Gala’s Trauma Survivor Giving Back Emergency medicine and trauma physicians, anesthesiologists, Award for Cole, a touching tribute to honor Cole’s work in injury pharmacists, nurses, and bedside paramedics engaged in a highly prevention among high school age students. The Sydnor Award orchestrated effort to keep Bette alive from one hour to the next. will be honored annually at the Gala to a trauma survivor who Bette recovered gradually and advanced from Intensive Care, to uses their experience to educate others in the spirit of injury and Respiratory Critical Care, to Progressive Care, and ultimately violence prevention. on to Westport Rehabilitation and Nursing Center. More than The mission of the Injury and Violence Prevention Program five months after the car crash, Bette walked out of the door and at VCU Medical Center is to reduce and prevent injuries went home to her loving family. through ongoing education, research, and community outreach On May 2, 2015, Bette took the floor with Trarell for that throughout the central Virginia region. Research has shown promised first dance in front of an audience of 400 at the 2015 that engaging patients during their recovery provides the best Shining Knight Gala. Fifty-four Shining Knights, including a opportunity to change their lives and reduce retaliation and therapy dog, were honored for their role in saving Bette’s life. recidivism. Patient care goes beyond the hospital doors to make The Annual Shining Knight Gala started in 2009 as a means our community a safer place. The passionate sentiment of the to raise critical resources for the Injury and Violence Prevention evening was best captured by Virginia State Senator Thomas Program of VCU’s Level 1 Trauma Center. Through the event Norment, one of the gala’s honorary co-chairs, who said, each year, a patient’s story is highlighted and the caregivers “I am humbled by the mission of the VCU Trauma Center… who made the life-saving work possible are awarded as “Shining you have gained a friend for life.” Knights.” The event started out small in 2009, netting approximately $22,000. The 2015 Gala enjoyed record sponsorship and We hope to see you at the 2016 Shining Knight Gala on April 30, 2016 ticket revenues raising over $200,000. Funds raised from the at the Greater Richmond Convention Center. event support programs that are pointed at preventing injury and

Photo above: Bette Wallerstein danced with one of her most special care providers, Trarell White. Photo below: Over 50 Shining Knights were honored for their help in saving the life of Bette Wallerstein.

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Event photos: University Relations

Chronicle of Giving Summer 2015


VCU Medical Center Ranked Number 1 Hospital in Virginia Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center has been recognized as the No. 1 hospital in Virginia and the Richmond metro area in U.S. News & World Report’s newest Best Hospitals rankings. VCU Medical Center also ranks in the top 50 in the country for orthopedics at No. 34, nephrology at 48, and cardiology and heart surgery in the 49th spot. “As central Virginia’s only comprehensive academic medical center and largest safety net provider, we provide care for the most complex patients,” said John Duval, vice president for clinical services, and CEO, VCU Hospitals. “This special recognition is a reflection of the hard work and compassionate care our team of physicians, nurses and staff provides to all we serve. The Best Hospitals rankings are a wonderful affirmation of our commitment to achieve high reliability through advancing quality, safety and service in academic medicine.” For 2015-16, U.S. News evaluated hospitals in 16 adult specialties and ranked the top 50 in most of the specialties. Less than 3 percent of the nearly 5,000 hospitals analyzed for Best Hospitals were nationally NUMBER 1 ranked in even one specialty. IN VIRGINIA In rankings by state and metro area, U.S. News recognized hospitals that perform nearly at the level of their nationally ranked peers in one or more specialties, as well as hospitals that excel in multiple common procedures and conditions. “Being an academic medical center means providing the highest level of safe, quality care through research, technology and education,” said Michael Rao, Ph.D., president of VCU and the VCU Health System. “While modern health care faces enormous challenges, this recognition is an indication that VCU Medical Center delivers on its mission each and every day, regardless of the changing climate. I am very proud of the entire team at the medical center.” “VCU Medical Center delivers exceptional clinical care. We are a leader in safety, quality, and innovative research” said Jerome F. Strauss III, M.D., Ph.D., interim vice president, VCU Health Sciences. “It is a privilege to be included on this prestigious list. More importantly, this recognition validates our quest for excellence across the full spectrum of care.” The specialty rankings and data were produced for U.S. News by RTI International, a leading research organization based in Research Triangle Park, N.C. U.S. News used the same data, as well as the new Best Hospitals for Common Care ratings, first published in May, to produce the state and metro rankings. Photo: Kevin E. Schindler

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MCV Campus 10th Annual Endowed Scholarship Brunch On February 22nd, the MCV Foundation hosted its 10th Annual MCV Campus Endowed Scholarship Brunch at the Jefferson Hotel. More than 320 donors, scholarship recipients, and special guests attended this event. MCV Foundation Interim President, Brian Thomas, welcomed the guests and shared his gratitude for the tremendous support that the MCV Campus has received for endowed scholarships. Since last year, 35 new scholarships were endowed, bringing the total number of endowed scholarships on the MCV Campus up to 325. The total payout for FY2015 for endowed scholarships and awards exceeded $1.8 million. During the brunch VCU President Dr. Michael Rao shared his gratitude

to the many donors and guests. He spoke about the crucial role that scholarships play in attracting top-caliber students. Fourth year medical student Benjamin Lindsey spoke about the impact of the scholarship he received while attending medical school, and how it has inspired him to endow a scholarship in the future. Ben is the recipient of the Kinloch Nelson Scholarship. Dr. Joseph DiPiro, Dean of the School of Pharmacy, and his wife, Cecily, recently endowed a scholarship at the School of Pharmacy. Dean DiPiro spoke from a donor’s perspective about the importance of giving back to help ensure that the MCV Campus Schools continue to attract the very best students.

Photos 1: (Standing left to right) Scholarship recipients Amber Richardson, Amelia Bazzi, and Elizabeth Letchworth take a break from the brunch to pose for a photo with (seated) Pia Jordan, of the Louise Lomax Winters Scholarship Fund and scholarship recipient Patty Parker. 2: Drs. Melissa and Kinloch Nelson of the Kinloch Nelson Scholarship Fund flank student speaker and Kinloch Nelson Scholarship recipient Ben Lindsey during the brunch. 3: Russell Fiske Scholarship recipients Melinda Ellis, Ashley-Nicole Carmichael, Lauren Fruhling, and (seated) Lauren Shelley converse with Eric Fiske and Judy Fiske of the Russell H. Fiske, Sr. Scholarship in Pharmacy. 4: Nurse Anesthesia Chair, Dr. Michael Fallacaro, Bernie Kuzava, and Col. Herbert Watson catch up at the pre-brunch reception. 5: MCV Foundation Lifetime Honorary Trustee Dr. Jeffrey Levin and his wife Bobbi, both of the Dr. Jeffrey Levin and Barbara K. Levin Scholarship in the School of Dentistry smile with the recipient of the Scholarship, Lisa Doan. 6: (Standing) School of Allied Health Professions Assistant Dean for Development and External Affairs Jessica Gurganus and Dr. T. Winston Gouldin enjoy the brunch with (seated) Assistant Professor and Assistant Director of Clinical Education Dr. Shawne Soper and Mrs. Eleanor Gouldin, of the Cindy Gouldin Memorial Scholarship in Physical Therapy.

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Event photos: CSI Studios

Chronicle of Giving Summer 2015


Navigating the Seas of Mental Health Martha Estes Grover knows firsthand what it’s like for a family to find itself lost at sea after a mental illness diagnosis. At age 20 her brother, Michael, was diagnosed with schizophrenia. She was 13 years old and the family needed a life raft but didn’t know where to turn. Their search took them to the Virginia Treatment Center for Children (VTCC) on the MCV Campus of Virginia Commonwealth University, a nationally renowned child and adolescent psychiatric facility serving families throughout the state. VTCC is the pediatric division of the Department of Psychiatry in the VCU School of Medicine. Since 1956, the VTCC has made a profound difference in the lives of families, like the Estes’, searching for help with mental health issues. Addressing depression and autism spectrum disorder, to anxiety and behavioral problems and more, the center has provided inpatient and outpatient clinical care, research programs, and teaching opportunities. “When we lost Michael at age 49, I knew I wanted to give back to the mental health arena,” Grover says. She became reacquainted with the VTCC not long after her brother died and has been involved in fundraising efforts to build a new facility ever since. She and campaign committee co-chair, Eva Teig Hardy, are dedicated not only to raising money, but working to erase the stigma of mental illness along the way. “We’ve raised roughly $64 million of the $75 million goal,” Grover says. “A huge part of that funding has been legislative, but there’s still a crucial need for private funding. Mental illness isn’t very flashy, but when there’s a personal attachment to the story, that helps.” Grover watched her family struggle after her brother’s diagnosis. They didn’t know what to do or how to talk about it. “It wasn’t something that people talked about, so my parents were left to navigate a process very much alone. There weren’t support groups or people talking about mental illness back then,” she says. “My hope is to give back. I firmly believe in giving back to communities and I was so delighted to reconnect with the VTCC not even knowing it would result in a capital campaign.” But the need goes beyond the initial campaign, Grover explains. There’s an ongoing need for outreach and programming. A lot has changed since 1956. There are more and more families looking for assistance, more children ages 3 to 17 in need of services, and more ways to deliver compassionate clinical care. The current facility outgrew its ability to accommodate the growing need for mental health programs dedicated to children and adolescents. The new facility at the Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU Brook Road Campus is expected to be completed

Virginia Treatment Center for Children

by fall 2017 and includes a 32-bed inpatient acute pediatric psychiatric unit, outpatient offices for behavioral health, a Children’s Mental Health Resource Center, and the Commonwealth Institute for Child and Family Studies, the Department’s child psychiatry research institute. “My brother struggled his adult life and during that time I was especially intrigued with early detection and resources for families,” Grover says. “Mental health management has changed so much over the past 40 years, but the stigma is still very dangerous. Mental illness knows no boundaries. It touches all of us in every sector including pediatrics. That’s where my heart is. That’s where I came from. I want to help people and parents get the tools and resources they need. Along the way we’re building awareness and helping remove the stigma. I tell the story one day at a time over coffee, over lunch, over dinner…whatever it takes to say, ‘here’s what we’re doing and here’s why it’s important,’ it’s incredible. There’s been so much support and I’m grateful.”

And VCU is grateful for Grover’s commitment. “Martha has been a dynamo by telling her story in the community and encouraging others to support our work,” notes Dr. Joel Silverman, professor and Chair of the VCU Department of Psychiatry. “Her message that mental illness must be acknowledged and treated, rather than Martha Grover hidden, is life saving. She is a wonderful partner. We need more advocates like Martha to advance the science and the treatment.”

VTCC Artwork: Cannon Design / Martha Grover photo: Kevin E. Schindler

Chronicle of Giving Summer 2015

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Discovery Series

sparks education gift

When Judy and Harry Wason attended a MCV Foundation Discovery Series program focusing on the VCU Massey Cancer Center in Williamsburg in April 2014, Judy’s main motivation was to reconnect with and be supportive of her friend Becky Massey, longtime Massey Advisory Board member and benefactor. The two had become friends when Judy lived in Richmond and was Director of Development at the Maymont Foundation and Becky Massey was on the board. But Harry wanted to attend the event for a different reason: cancer ran in his family and he’d had prostrate cancer many years before. He was more than aware of the disease in many of its forms, but it wouldn’t hurt to learn more. When radiologists noticed a shadow during a colonoscopy Harry had scheduled not long after the Discovery Series event, they suggested a second opinion. “The first person I thought of was my godson Jay Kuemmerle,” he says. Kuemmerle, Chair of the Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition at VCU Medical Center, referred Wason to his colleague Brian Kaplan, M.D., a surgical oncologist and director of the General Surgery Residency Program at Harry and Judy Wason VCU’s School of Medicine. Wason was diagnosed with two malignant tumors in the back of his stomach, which Kaplan removed. “Hopefully, that’s the end of that,” Harry says. But that wasn’t the end of the Wasons’ appreciation for Dr. Kaplan’s care as well as their appreciation for the MCV Foundation’s Discovery Series program, an initiative launched by the Foundation to provide event guests with immediate access to the work of scholars, researchers, and clinicians. “It’s a wonderful outreach program,” Judy says. “People came from all over Williamsburg. It’s a great concept. The setting is informal and comfortable where you can personally talk with doctors one-on-one, which is a wonderful way to do it. You don’t always want to bring up a question in front of an audience.”

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The experience left such an impression with the couple, that in March they contributed $100,000 to Massey Cancer Center’s training and education program advancing the careers of promising scholars. The Wasons’ gift will fund one predoctoral position for two years. “Cancer was in my family. My mother died of cancer, my father died of cancer and my brother had a brain tumor so I had an interest in cancer before I was ever diagnosed,” Harry says. “Massey is on the cutting edge and I thought I’d like to help someone in the future. Maybe even me. You don’t know in life. I thought this was a natural thing to do in my situation.” People of the Wasons’ age, they say, are concerned about health and mortality. The Discovery Series event made them aware of the depth and breadth of the latest cancer research, which helped put their mind at ease. And they were eager to spread the word. “We were very, very impressed,” Judy says. “We’ve told our own doctors here in Williamsburg about the program and all are just as interested as we are. We’re extraordinarily pleased about that because these are doctors who can make referrals [to Massey].” The Wasons hope their gift is an example for others, especially in the Williamsburg area, site of the first Discovery Series event. “We offer the challenge to inspire other people to join us in helping Massey find the answer and the cure for a disease that effects every family” Judy says. “Harry and Judy Wason’s extraordinary generosity is a huge boost to our training and education fund,” says Gordon Ginder, M.D., VCU Massey Cancer Center director and Lipman Chair in Oncology. “Ensuring there is a next generation of physicians and scientists who will continue the progress and advancements that have been made is essential to our mission of eradicating death and suffering caused by cancer. I am grateful for this investment, and the inspiration I know it will spark in others.” Wason photo: Kevin E. Schindler

Chronicle of Giving Summer 2015


MCV Foundation Board Honors Dr. Sheldon Retchin The MCV Foundation hosted a reception in February to honor Dr. Sheldon M. Retchin for his outstanding service to the MCV 1

Campus, the VCU Health System, and VCU. During this event, the Board announced that the Foundation will launch a special fundraising effort to endow a professorship in Dr. Retchin’s name. The Retchin Professorship will serve as a tribute to Dr. Retchin’s legacy across the MCV Campus. Dr. Sheldon M. Retchin, chief executive officer of the VCU Health System for more than a decade, announced in December his decision to leave VCU to take a similar post at Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center. Dr. Retchin assumed the post as executive vice president of health sciences and chief executive officer of the Wexner Medical Center on March 2.

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Dr. Retchin first came to VCU, then Medical College of Virginia Hospitals, in 1976 as an internal medicine intern after earning his medical degree at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He returned to UNC from 1980 to 1986, holding several positions, before returning to VCU in 1987. Dr. Retchin served as CEO of the VCU Health System since 2003. He also served as senior vice president for health sciences, with responsibility for the schools of medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, nursing, and allied health professions. 3 Photos 1: VCU President Dr. Michael Rao, departing Senior Vice President of Health Sciences and CEO of VCU Health System Dr. Sheldon Retchin, and MCV Foundation Board Chairman Gail Johnson remark on the years of Dr. Retchin’s service to the University. 2: Marcia Thalhimer, Lindsay Wortham, and Tracy Retchin smile as they share memories of Dr Retchin’s tenure. 3: Coley Wortham, Dr. Retchin, and MCV Foundation Trustee Austin Brockenbrough discuss the announcement of the Retchin Professorship. 4: Dr. Retchin, Alexander Kay, and MCV Foundation Trustees Dr. Charlie Bryan and Harry Thalhimer wish Dr. Retchin well at the reception. 5: Alice Goodwin and Ken Wright pause for a photo as the evening comes to a close. Event photos: Kevin E. Schindler

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VCU

MCV Foundation

Virginia Commonwealth University Medical College of Virginia Campus P.O. Box 980234 Richmond, Virginia 23298-0234

Nonprofit Organization U.S. Postage

PAID

Permit No. 1182 Richmond, Virginia

chool of Medicine

Photo: Kevin E. Schindler

Chronicle of Giving | Summer 2015  

Medical College of Virginia Foundation Chronicle of Giving

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