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Focus on financial aid

BERNARD Gordon’s INVESTMENT empowers A VISION FOR the school of engineering — page 3

Finding new therapies Sackler Families Fund will advance collaborative cancer biology research, page 6

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FOR TUFTS UNIVERSITY | FALL 2009

Parting with college-bound children isn’t easy; ensuring they can afford to complete their studies is Tufts’ promise to them, page 4

A place to turn Thanks to Agnes Varis, more beloved pets can be treated at Cummings’ Harrington Oncology Program, page 9

Remembering Rachel With his naming gift, Louis Fiore, D62, adds a touching tribute to the School of Dental Medicine’s Vertical Expansion project, page 10

Fall 2009

N ews o f t h e Beyond Boundaries Campaign


News of the Beyond Boundaries Campaign

Fall 2009

A message from President Bacow DEAR FRIENDS: The remarkable generosity of Tufts’ supporters once again has made headlines. As you may have heard, a recent commitment of $40 million from Trustee Emeritus Bernard Gordon, H92, pushed Beyond Boundaries: The Campaign for Tufts past the billion-dollar mark. Dr. Gordon’s philanthropy will support leadership education at the School of Engineering. We are extremely grateful for his support of Tufts—as we are for yours. Not all gifts make the papers. Yet all your gifts, whatever their size, have been vital to our reaching this milestone and to sustaining Tufts as a uniquely vibrant place to

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“Forty percent of our undergraduates receive

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scholarship aid from the university, and almost 10 percent of the students in this year’s freshman class are the first in their families

learn and make a meaningful contribution to our world. How much of an impact has your giving had? Here are a few statistics: Since the campaign’s unofficial launch seven years ago, the university has: • Received gifts from 117,000 alumni, parents, friends, corporations and foundations • Raised more than $362 million toward student support across Tufts • Raised $350 million toward 30 new endowed professorships and other faculty support • Received more than $100 million in annual fund giving that has been put to use immediately to support scholarships, the libraries, athletics, and campus facilities • Received naming gifts for the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine and the Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service From here, we still have an additional $180 million to raise before we reach our final campaign goal. This issue of Blueprint focuses on financial aid—our top fundraising priority. In a challenging economy, an increasing number of our extraordinary students need assistance to attend Tufts. Forty percent of our undergraduates receive scholarship aid from the university, and almost 10 percent of the students in this year’s freshman class are the first in their families to attend college.

to attend college.”

Many of you know that I am a marathoner. The dreaded Heartbreak Hill comes at mile 21 of the Boston Marathon. In the campaign, crossing the billion-dollar mark feels like cresting that hill. However, we still have a ways to go to finish the race. Thank you for getting us this far and for helping us cross the finish line! Sincerely, Lawrence S. Bacow, President

Blueprint

Vol. 3, No. 1 • Fall 2009

Chair, Board of Trustees James A. Stern, E72, A07P President Lawrence S. Bacow, Ph.D. Provost Jamshed J. Bharucha, Ph.D.

Campaign Chairs

Pamela K. Omidyar, J89 Pierre M. Omidyar, A88 Alan D. Solomont, A70, A08P Jonathan M. Tisch, A76

Honorary Chairs William S. Cummings, A58, M97P, J97P Dr. Bernard M. Gordon, H92 Daniel F. Pritzker, A81, A12P Karen M. Pritzker, J83,A12P

Executive Committee Kathryn C. Chenault, Esq., J77 Steven B. Epstein, Esq., A65, A96P, A01P, A07P, AG04P Nathan Gantcher, A62, H04 Martin J. Granoff, A91P Daniel A. Kraft, A87 Joseph E. Neubauer, E63, J90P Agnes Varis, H03

University Advancement Tufts University 80 George Street Medford, MA 02155 617.627.3200 giving@tufts.edu


Technology Icon Bernard Gordon Commits $40 Million to Tufts School of Engineering Investment Boosts Tufts’ Capital Campaign Past $1 Billion Mark

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ernard Gordon, known as the father of analog-to-digital con­ version and for breakthroughs such as the fetal heart monitor and portable CT scan, will invest $40 million in Tufts University’s School of Engineering to advance its engi­ neering leadership education pro­ grams. Gordon’s philanthropy will enable the school to significantly strengthen its efforts to prepare engineers with not just knowledge of engineering, but also the skills and attitudes necessary for success­ ful engineering leadership. This will entail expanding project-based learning for engineering undergraduates, creating a new engineering leadership minor, and hiring more professors of the practice— seasoned engineering leaders who bring real-world experience to classrooms and laboratories. Gordon is cofounder and chairman of NeuroLogica Corporation of Danvers, Mass., and the founder and former CEO and chairman of Analogic Corporation. He has been an outspoken advocate for the pressing need for engineers who can assume leadership roles and contrib­ ute to society as technological innovators. Gordon’s gift to Tufts is the largest he has made to any institution, and he has now given nearly $200 million to support engineering education worldwide. His philanthropy pushes the uni­ versity’s $1.2 billion Beyond Boundaries capital campaign, which is focused on providing resources to faculty and students, past the $1 billion mark. “This century may fairly be considered the century of the engineer,” said Tufts President Lawrence S. Bacow. “Bernie Gordon has devoted his life to the idea that engi­ neers should make the world a better place through their leadership. He knows how to get things done and we are delighted that he appreciated kindred spirits at Tufts.” Fall 2009

“Great engineers succeed because they are true leaders who combine technical skill with the capacity to lead and motivate others.” —Bernard Gordon “Tufts is committed to educating leaders to serve the common good,” said Provost and Senior Vice President Jamshed Bharucha. “Engineering leaders must be able to inspire teams of people to envision and realize technolog­ ical goals in complex and fast-paced environments. They must understand not just the science but also the people they lead and the people for whom their technology is intended.” Linda Abriola, dean of the School of Engineering since 2003 and a noted environmental engineer, pointed out, “Many of the challenges we face as a nation and a society are technical in nature, extraordinarily complex, and intertwined with global financial and political con­ cerns. Engineers cannot cede leadership to those who may be ill-equipped to understand the technical aspects (Continued on page 11)

N ews o f t h e Beyond Boundaries Campaign


News of the Beyond Boundaries Campaign

Fall 2009

IN CHALLENGING TIMES, TUFTS DONORS GO Tufts has been able to maintain a commitment to meeting the full demonstrated need of all undergraduates, thanks to the generosity of the university’s friends and supporters. In spite of—or more likely, in response to—the financial crisis, giving to Tufts this past year kept a strong pace, providing indispens­ able support for scholarships, for research, for libraries, for the arts, and for athletics. “The recession vastly lowered our fundraising expectations for the year,” said Provost and Senior Vice President Jamshed Bharucha. “But we raised more than $109 million, making it the fifth most successful fundraising year in the history of Tufts. What makes the story most impressive is the way our alumni and friends joined with us in partnership to support our students,

teaching, and research,” Bharucha said. In particular, giving to the annual fund—dollars the university can put to immediate use—finished remarkably strong. The early prediction was that annual giving might be down about 10 percent from last year, said Brian Lee, vice president for university advance­ ment. Instead, annual giving rallied over the spring and finished at $16.9 million—a new record. Annual gifts make an immediate and important difference. All the university’s schools and campuses depend on unrestricted annual giving for meeting areas of greatest need. Annual funds close the gap between the cost of tuition and what each student actually pays. By stabilizing day-to-day operations, they keep Tufts flexible by provid­ ing critical resilience against unexpected contingencies.

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FOCUS ON FIN A N C IA L A ID

Arts & Sciences Overseer helps pave way for future generations Nancy Glass, J77, an overseer at the School of Arts and Sciences, has made a generous pledge that will be matched by an anonymous donor, creating an endowed scholarship for an A&S student. Glass says, “The more I learn about the school, the more I admire the way it is run and the goals set by the administration. Scholarships are very important to Tufts and I want to show my support by giving.” Glass recalls a recent exchange at Boston’s Logan Airport; a woman at the concession stand noticed Glass’ Tufts notebook and got teary as she described how she and her son had immigrated to the United States from Ukraine hoping for a better life. Her dream came true when her son was awarded a scholarship to Tufts. “It was so heartwarming to see this woman so grateful and happy.”

JODI HILTON

ALONSO NICHOLS

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During that same visit to campus, Glass ran into her favorite professor, Sol Gittleman, whose Yiddish Literature (or “Yid Lit,” as it was nicknamed) was one of her most memorable classes. “I enjoyed the class so much, I saved my notes,” she says. That’s why she made a gift that will help a new generation of students attend the school. “I want as many kids as possible to have the phenomenal experience that I had at Tufts,” she says. Glass, a six-time Emmy Award–winning television host, writer, and producer, knows what it takes to make it in the television


ABOVE AND BEYOND

VOLUNTEER PROFILE: ROB E RT K ENNISON, M.D., M60

Students First Challenge supports scholarships

JOANIE TOBIN

Providing key support was the newly launched Students First Challenge that matches Tufts Fund gifts of $7,500 or more earmarked toward financial aid. This doubles the impact of donors’ contribu­ tions, while providing unrestricted dollars for scholarship aid. The challenge was made possible by a matching gift from the Jay Pritzker Foundation, whose trustees Daniel, A81, A12P, and Karen Pritzker, A12P, also a Tufts University trustee, are honorary co-chairs of Beyond Boundaries: The Campaign for Tufts. More than 60 donors contributed more than $1.2 million in new gifts and $159,911 in upgrades—a total of more than $1.4 million.

a commitment to meeting the full demonstrated need of all undergraduates, thanks to the generosity of the university’s friends and supporters. Left, at Matriculation Day ceremonies this fall, President Bacow welcomes the Class of 2013.

Known as “Mr. Tufts Medicine” to those at Tufts University School of Medicine (TUSM), Dr. Bob Kennison, M60, has earned the title. Former president of the Tufts Medical Alumni Association, chairman of two committees of the Tufts University Alumni Association, and a member of the university’s Alumni Council, Kennison has played a major role in keeping Tufts students and alumni at the front of their fields. Thirty years ago Kennison helped create the ProblemBased Learning program, still in existence today at Tufts, under which students are given a clinical case during their first week of medical school. The students decide what they need to learn, carry out the research, and teach each other what they find: a model for what every doctor has to do after medical school. “If they have to figure a problem out on their own,” Kennison says, “they’ll remember it.”

business. The former Inside Edition and American Journal anchor also knows how hard it is to break into television. “There were no communications studies at Tufts when I was in school and no mechanism to support an internship in television. If it hadn’t been for Dean Nancy Milburn, I never would have been in TV,” says Glass, who now runs her own production company, Nancy Glass Productions, in Philadelphia. “Dean Milburn allowed me to work in television as an independent study project. She encouraged me and supported everything I achieved,” says Glass. As a Jackson College sophomore, Glass received credit for interning at WBZ-TV, then Boston’s NBC affiliate. It was her doorway to showbiz. Within a year Glass was producing, and by her senior year she was on the air. “I was so bad my parents asked me to change my name,” she jokes. “I wanted to do something crea­tive, dynamic, and that involved storytelling,” she says. “Once I started my internship, I knew what I wanted to do.” Her production company has produced more than 900 hours of prime time cable television, 500 Internet videos, and two shows on Sirius satellite radio.

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N ews o f t h e Beyond Boundaries Campaign

Kennison, a Malden, Mass., native, recently retired from the gynecology and obstetrics department at Tufts Medical Center where over the years he served as acting chairman and head of residency. He says the interest he takes in his students and residents mirrors the interest his own professors took in him when he was a student. The sense of community he got as a student, visiting patients’ homes as part of the Home Medical Service and getting to know their families, is still an important component of the TUSM student and alumni experience. To strengthen that sense of community at TUSM, Kennison helped create the Distinguished Service Awards, given out each year at the School of Medicine’s reunion, in which alumni are honored both for achievement in their fields and in their communities. He says, “It’s very gratifying for me to be able to teach and keep medical alumni up-to-date, interested, and involved in what’s going on both on campus and in the medical field.”

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Tufts has been able to maintain


News of the Beyond Boundaries Campaign

Fall 2009

Sackler Families Fund supports cancer research, continues decades-long tradition of philanthropy

ROB CARLIN

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NO DRUGS EXIST TODAY

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“The Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences has no better friends than the three Sackler families that established the school 30 years ago.” Dean Michael Rosenblatt, M.D. Dean Naomi Rosenberg, Ph.D.

to stop cancer from spreading. Professor Daniel Jay hopes his research will speed their discovery. “Metastasis is the truly devas­ tating aspect of cancer,” said the professor of physiology at the Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences. “The vast majority of can­ cer victims die not from the primary tumor but because of metastasis to secondary sites, ultimately succumb­ ing to a war of attrition. “Limiting metastasis makes can­ cer a treatable disease,” he said. Dr. Jay is one of more than 30 members of the Sackler faculty whose cancer research potentially will ben­ efit from the newly created Sackler Families Fund for Collaborative Cancer Biology Research. La Fondation Raymond et Beverly Sackler/The Raymond and Beverly Sackler Foundation; La Fondation Sackler/The Sackler Foundation, created by Dr. Mortimer D. Sackler; and The Arthur M. Sackler Foundation have joined to establish the Sackler Families Fund for Collaborative Cancer Biology Research at the Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences. This gift demonstrates the continued sup­ port and commitment to Tufts from the three Sackler families. “The researchers at Tufts are ­unified in their expression of grati­ tude to the three Sackler families for providing this support, which can serve as a lifeline to allow comple­ tion of cutting-edge studies,” said Philip Hinds, professor of radia­ tion oncology, associate director of

the Molecular Oncology Research Institute, and deputy director of the Tufts Medical Center Cancer Center. The cancer-research gift is the latest from the Sackler fami­ lies to benefit the sciences at Tufts. The Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences originally was established in 1980 at the School of Medicine through the generosity of Drs. Arthur, Mortimer, and Raymond Sackler. The Sackler Families Fund for Collaborative Cancer Biology Research at the Sackler School will generate approximately $100,000 a year to support the translation of scientific discovery toward a cure or effective treatment of cancer. A call for collaborative research proposals will be put out each year to Tufts faculty and students, and the award—drawing on the new funds— will be made by the dean of the Sackler School in consultation with the dean of the School of Medicine and a peer-review panel of distin­ guished faculty members from the Sackler School. “Cancer remains one of the lead­ ing causes of death in the United States, and cancer research is one of the focal themes of the School of Medicine and Tufts Medical Center,” said Jamshed Bharucha, Tufts’ chief academic officer as university provost and senior vice president. “This generous gift supports the strategy of developing translational research, which marries basic biological research with attempts to find treat­ ments for disease, thus translating science into treatment.”


In a joint expression of gratitude for the gift, Michael Rosenblatt, M.D., dean of the School of Medicine, and Naomi Rosenberg, Ph.D., dean of the Sackler School, said: “The Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences has no better friends than the three Sackler families that established the school 30 years ago. Through their steadfast commit­ ment, we are fulfilling our mission of providing superb graduate education for future leaders in research, teach­ Fall 2009

ing, and biotechnology. The Sackler School’s goal is to foster and develop the next generation of biomedical researchers who will make discoveries that translate into novel therapies for human disease. “In a time of economic chal­ lenge, this gift has special meaning, providing immediate funds for critical research in an era of declining fund­ ing from the National Institutes of Health,” the deans said. “We pledge to direct the funds to support the

N ews o f t h e Beyond Boundaries Campaign

“We are particularly excited at the prospect of finally understanding the identity and source of the cells that ­produce tumors, and that persist after conventional chemotherapy.” Professor Philip Hinds, M.D.

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most promising scientists and ideas in cancer biology at the Sackler School.” Professor Jay said his research involves identifying new proteins on cancer cells that act in cancer inva­ sion and spread. “We are employing a unique technology using light to destroy specific proteins expressed on cancer cells, to see if this affects the cell’s ability to invade. Using this approach we’ve identified three new proteins and are beginning to test them for their role in breast cancer metastasis and brain tumor spread.” Another whose work potentially may benefit is Professor Hinds, who said his research focuses on “the fundamental mechanisms that allow cancer cells to escape the signals that normally act to stop cells from dividing and tissues from growing.” The hope is to specifically identify proteins involved in proliferation of cancer stem cells so methods can be identified to interrupt their function. “We are particularly excited at the prospect of finally understanding the identity and source of the cells that produce tumors, and that persist after conventional chemotherapy,” Hinds said. “The fundamental concepts we are studying and the hypotheses gen­ erated also apply to a variety of other diseases of excess or impaired tissue formation, so have implications for disease that extend beyond cancer. We now have increased confidence that our work will have practical as well as fundamental impact in the near future. “Tufts has been an outstanding place to perform this research in part due to the physical resources that are readily available, but more so because of the highly collaborative atmosphere,” Dr. Hinds said. “Tufts people at all levels are uniformly and genuinely excited about working together to solve problems ranging from an understanding of the molec­ ular basis of disease to the produc­ tion of preclinical and clinical models useful for identifying and testing therapeutics.”


Ellen Block Scholars to further nutrition science and policy

“P

oor nutrition robs children of an even chance to grow, learn, and be happy,” says Ellen Block, BSOT66, whose work as chair of the Hasbro Children’s Foundation led her to join the fight against child hunger in the United States. “Good nutrition is very important to child development,” she says. “If you’re hungry, you don’t focus; you’re tired; you’re not receptive

FOCUS ON FINANCIAL AID blueprint

to learning. If children are not fed, they are more prone to disease; they’re not strong and healthy. They’re likely to be sick more often, and can’t concentrate.” Thus motivated—and in direct support of the mis­ sion of the Gerald J. and Dorothy R. Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy—Block has made a $1 million gift to establish two term scholarships for master’s degree students at the Friedman School over the next 10 years. “I hope the applied research that results from my gift will help change the landscape in poor rural and inner-city areas of this country, so people in those areas will better be able to support themselves,” said Block, who chairs the school’s Board of Overseers. Many children still go hungry amid the prosper­ ity of the United States, Block observed. “Americans are incredibly generous when it comes to opening their hearts and pocketbooks to those suffering overseas. Sometimes we can overlook the really hungry families and children in this land.”

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Friedman School students are uniquely suited to address these challenges we face, she said. “There is no limit to what Friedman students can accomplish if we give them the tools,” she said. “Our students, be they young or mid-career, feel they have a chance to change their community. They are like the people who answered the call to arms under [President] Kennedy to join the Peace Corps. They say, ‘I can make a differ­ ence.’ And they are making a difference, whether in the Sudan, or in their local neighborhoods.” Eileen Kennedy, dean of the Friedman School, said, “This gift is a wonderful testament to Ellie Block’s commitment to the Friedman School and to improv­ ing our nation’s health and nutrition. Student financial aid is the school’s top priority in Beyond Boundaries: The Campaign for Tufts, and her thoughtfulness will provide students the opportunity to pursue graduate studies at the only independent school of nutrition in North America.”

JOANIE TOBIN

ROOFTOP OASIS

A student enjoys a respite among the blooms in Alex’s Place, a newly land­ scaped garden atop Tisch Library crea­ ted through a gift by Tom and Andrea Mendell in memory of their late son, Alex, A06. The space was dedica­ ted this past April.


Zeus Varis Fund underwrites cancer therapy benefit from that same dedicated commitment. “Zeus’s fund helps demonstrate that pal­ liative care can be a good choice, dramatically improving quality of life often for an extended period,” notes Barber. Animals in a pivotal role, such as service animals, pets of the elderly, or pets in families with special needs children, receive special consid­ eration. More than 20 people and families have benefited since the fund’s February launch; many have sent Varis poignant notes of gratitude. One man wrote that his nowhealthy dog, all he had left that had belonged to his late wife, would have died had it not been for the fund. The Harrington Oncology Program is ­committed to advancing the understanding of cancer in animals and translating research insights into effective clinical interventions. Faculty in the program evaluate promis­ ing new therapies and strive to understand tumor cell biology relevant to detection and treatment of cancer in animals and humans. Cummings is currently a partner in the National Cancer Institute’s Comparative Oncology Trial Consortium and the Pfizer Biospecimen Repository for the Canine Comparative Oncology and Genomics Consortium.

Aso Tavitian, far right, with students in the Tavitian Scholarship Program

Varis

“Zeus’s fund helps demonstrate that palliative care can be a good choice, dramatically improving quality of life often for an extended period.” — Oncologist Lisa Barber, D.V.M.

Tavitian Foundation observes 10th anniversary of Fletcher partnership for Armenia His story, it’s been said, is like one out of Dickens. Aso O. Tavitian, a penniless 19-year-old émigré of Armenian descent, had received a scholarship to college in Beirut, but had resigned himself to turning down the opportunity because he couldn’t afford living expenses. Out of the blue, just before school was to begin, the young man was notified funds suddenly had become available to cover his costs. A few years later he learned, from a file left uncovered on an administrator’s desk, that one of his teachers had been paying his expenses, with instructions that the donation should remain anonymous. “That obviously had a great impact on me,” Tavitian says. “My teacher was a man of very modest means, and his desire that I not be told was the ultimate in giving.” (Continued on page 10)

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Imagine learning that your beloved pet—a family member—has treatable cancer, but that treatment is unaffordable. Imagine your heartwrenching decision. This was the thought that came to Tufts benefactor Agnes Varis when one of her own family members, her cat Zeus, was diagnosed with cancer last January. As Varis, a Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine overseer and Tufts University trustee, started to pay Zeus’s $10,000 bill from the New York-based veteri­ nary practice, it hit her: “I’m one of the lucky ones who can afford this; most people would have to make the decision that they can’t.” She literally wept at the thought. Out of that deep sadness came the February launch of the $250,000 Zeus Varis Fund. Varis established the fund to bring cancer therapies for pets within more people’s reach in the Harrington Oncology Program at the Henry and Lois Foster Hospital for Small Animals. Concurrently, Cummings oncologist Lisa Barber, D.V.M., was reaching out to Varis longdistance. Staying in regular contact with Zeus’s oncologist, Barber guided Varis through the ups and downs of the pet’s illness and treatment. “Lisa was my lifeline,” she says. “That made all the difference.” Varis wants other families to


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Tavitian/Fletcher

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Tavitian went on to become very successful in business and a generous benefactor of education and the arts. Through the charitable works of his Tavitian Foundation, the ArmenianAmerican philanthropist says, he is paying his old teacher back. Over the past 10 years more than 100 young Armenian diplo­ mats and government officials have received support from the Tavitian Foundation for advanced training at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts. (Additionally, 30 more students have received support from the foundation to attend other top-level U.S. universities.) Tavitian and Joyce Barsam, J62, AG89, a Fletcher overseer, created the Armenian Certificate Program at the Fletcher School in 1999 with the aim of training professionals from the fledgling republic in Western-style leadership. The program also has included an annual trip for Fletcher faculty and deans to the former Soviet republic, which established its independence in 1991. For Barsam’s part, the opportu­ nity to coordinate all aspects of the certificate program perfectly har­ monized two of her main interests: Armenia and Tufts. “The program benefits both the university and the Armenians,” she says. “The most rewarding part of it is seeing its impact on the participants, and then seeing the impact the participants have on their relatively new state. And the students who come each year have taught the Tufts community a great deal about where they’re from.” “The Tavitian Foundation’s continued support strengthens Fletcher’s mission to cultivate leaders with a global perspective at a time when such leaders are desperately needed,” said Stephen W. Bosworth, dean of The Fletcher School. Tavitian, founder and former CEO of the New Jersey-based soft­ ware company Syncsort, also serves on the boards of several institutions devoted to the arts, education, and cultural exchange.

BRIAN TIETZ

(Continued from page 9)

“My mother worked so hard her whole life so I could succeed in mine.”

Rachel’s Amphitheater an enduring tribute to a mother’s devotion Louis Fiore, D62, is very clear about the inspiration for his gift to fund a new 75-seat amphitheater at the School of Dental Medicine: “Tufts gave me the opportunity to become a dentist, and without Rachel Fiore, I never would have had the opportunity to attend Tufts.”

Conn. She married at age 20 and had five children, one of whom died as a toddler. Louis was the youngest, and when he started elementary school, his mother returned to the carpet factory, working from two in the afternoon until 10 o’clock at night.

The 75-seat classroom on the 14th floor at One Kneeland Street affords a spectacular view of the Boston skyline.

Rachel’s Amphitheater, named for Fiore’s mother, will be located on the new 14th floor of the dental school, part of an expansion project that is adding five floors atop the building at One Kneeland Street. “My mother worked so hard her whole life so I could succeed in mine,” Fiore says. “The gift recognizes how highly I value Tufts’ role in my life.” Rachel Fiore’s story mirrors that of many immigrants who came to the United States in the early 20th century in search of work and a better life. Born Rachel Valvo in the small town of Naro, Sicily, in 1900, she was only 16 when she left Italy with her sister to take a job at the Bigelow-Sanford Carpet Co. in Thompsonville,

“In the morning, she got me out to school, did her baking and laundry, and prepared lunch so it was waiting when I came home at noon. She left dinner prepared for our family, and after her shift in the factory, she’d walk home and finish whatever needed to be done before retiring for the evening. This was her daily routine,” Fiore recalls.

He says their relationship was built on love and respect. “When my mother was working,” he notes, “she had to trust me to follow the rules. I was supposed to be in before dark, and when the streetlights came on, I always ran home.” Although his mother died when Fiore was just 16, he had already decided to become a dentist, a career Rachel supported. “When I received my Tufts diploma,” he says, “my mother was the first person I thought of.” Fiore retired from practice in 1984 because of health issues. He and his wife, Jean, raised four children. “Of course, they never knew my mother,” he notes, “but this gift has brought up a lot of memories and will help them to understand how much she meant to me.”


Gordon’s leadership investment (Continued from page 3) of our global, information- and energy-driven society. Tufts’ School of Engineering seeks to become the school of choice for aspiring technological leaders.” Gordon has been a strong supporter of engineer­ ing education that goes beyond traditional technological preparation, a mandate supported by a recent Carnegie Foundation report on the future of engineering educa­ tion. “Engineers invent and bring to market new technol­ ogies that enable advances in health care, manufacturing, infrastructure, transportation, communications, energy production—the full range of human activity,” said Gordon. “Great engineers succeed because they are true leaders who combine technical skill with the capacity to lead and motivate others.” The new engineering leadership initiatives will ben­ efit from a close relationship with Tufts’ Gordon Institute, which was created by Gordon in 1984 to further graduate education for practicing engineers and moved to Tufts in 1992. The institute’s M.S. in engineering management

Provost ­Jamshed ­Bharucha, left, and ­Gordon ­discuss the future of engineering education.

is a nationally recognized engineering business manage­ ment program designed to provide practicing engineers and applied scientists with the knowledge and skills they need to be leaders in technology-driven compa­ nies. The current class represents more than 30 differ­ ent firms from all industry sectors. In a 2008 survey, 45 percent of Gordon Institute alumni reported that they had been ­promoted by their companies while they were still enrolled in the program, and 95 percent had been promoted within two years of graduation.

“How are you, Bernard?” Chance Encounter Sparks Life-Long Tie

Gordon grew up during the Depression in western Massachusetts. As a boy, he liked to fix radios and transmitters and tackle other practical challenges. He earned his first dollar at 13, building and selling improved outhouses featuring a cord that, when pulled, released lime and helped leach waste into the ground. A teenaged Gordon entered the Navy’s officer training program. The Navy first sent him to MIT, but Tufts was also one of the schools selected to support the V-12 program, and in 1944, the 17-year-old Gordon was housed on the Tufts campus. One evening as the young man walked across campus in his uniform, a tall gentleman approached. Fall 2009

Sophia Gordon Hall, and additional support for the School of Engineering. Gordon is a Tufts trustee emeritus, member of the “I didn’t know him Board of Overseers and to this day I for the School of wonder how he knew Engineering, and me!” says Gordon. honorary co-chair of “But it seemed to Beyond Boundaries: me that Tufts was The Campaign for a friendly place Tufts. His core techwith a personal nology of high-speed atmosphere.” President Carmichael analog-to-digital conversion is now Gordon spent six to found in everything from comeight months at Tufts, studyputers, compact discs, and ing engineering and psycholtelevisions to EKG machines, ogy along with naval navigation digital thermometers, atomic and strategy. As a naval officer, clocks and imaging equipment. Gordon was later assigned to His companies have developed destroyer escorts. Remaining many breakthroughs, including a Ready Reserve officer, he the first fetal monitor, first lightreturned to MIT on the G.I. Bill, weight mobile CT scanner, first graduating with a bachelor’s instant imaging CT system, and (1948) and a master’s in elecan advanced security imaging trical engineering (1949). system to help detect exploPrior to his most recent gift, sives and other contraband. Gordon had donated $35 milAt NeuroLogica, Gordon is lion to Tufts for a variety of developing a portable imagpurposes, including the Gordon ing system to help stroke and Institute, the construction of trauma victims. It was Tufts President Leonard Carmichael. Carmichael greeted him: “And how are you, Bernard?”

N ews o f t h e Beyond Boundaries Campaign

In 1986, Gordon was honored by President Ronald Reagan with the second National Medal of Technology. Elected a member of the National Academy of Engineering in 1991, he has also been awarded several honorary degrees, including one from Tufts in 1992. Gordon’s gift to Tufts is the latest example of his deep commitment to engineering education that includes establishing not only the Gordon Institute but also the Bernard M. Gordon Prize for Innovation in Engineering and Technology Education at the National Academy of Engineering— an award that the Academy bestowed on the Institute in 2007. His philanthropy has also made possible initiatives at numerous other institutions nationwide, including MIT, the Museum of Science in Boston, Northeastern University, Worcester Polytechnic Institute and the University of California at San Diego.

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Bernard Gordon has had an indelible impact on Tufts. But had it not been for a chance encounter between an aspiring naval officer of 17 and the university president 65 years ago, the close ties between Gordon and Tufts might not have developed.


News of the Beyond Boundaries Campaign

Fall 2009 NONPROFIT ORGANIZATION U.S. POSTAGE PA I D BOSTON, MA PERMIT NO. 1161

University Advancement 80 George Street, Medford, MA 02155

Given to Tufts: first a career, and now a legacy

JOANIE TOBIN

A

llen Everett, professor emer­ itus and former chair of the Department of Physics and Astronomy, has announced he intends to bequeath a portion of his estate to Tufts to support research in theoretical particle physics and cosmology. “Tufts has been a big part of my life,” Professor Everett said. He joined the Tufts faculty as a newly minted Harvard Ph.D. in 1960 soon after Tufts had introduced its doctoral program in physics, and was chair of the department in 1979 when Professor of Physics Alan Cormack won a Nobel Prize. “That was a really exciting time,” Everett said during a recent interview at his Robinson Hall office, piled high with books and papers, and with several years’ equa­ tions chalked on the blackboard. “Two things,” he said, “have been very important in my life: the Tufts Physics Department, and my marriage. They’re connected: I met my wife, Marylee, at the end of her senior year. She was a biology major who came in to get her grade in Physics 12. She got an A-plus. She got a lot of A-pluses.” Marylee Everett, J64, who went on to earn a Ph.D. in plant physiology from the University of California at Berkeley, taught biology at Simmons

and Merrimack colleges. She and her husband traveled the world seeking beauty in plants, animals, and birds. She passed away in February 2008. Currently, Everett is completing a book titled Tunnels through Time and Space, on the physics of time travel, to be published by the University of Chicago Press. (Is time travel really achievable? Not likely, he said, but under the theory of relativity, it’s pos­ sible.) “I have taught undergraduate courses for non-science majors on the science of time travel,” he said. “We did read a lot of science fiction. I managed to teach them a good deal of physics when they weren’t looking.” That mix of teaching and research was what attracted him to Tufts. “People often say there’s a conflict between teaching and research,” he said. “Not so at Tufts

“We did read a lot of science fiction. I managed to teach them a good deal of physics when they weren’t looking.” It’s important for physics students to be in an atmosphere where people are actually doing physics rather than simply talking about it. Research is vital for teaching.” President Lawrence S. Bacow said, “I appreciate Allen’s longstand­ ing commitment to the Department of Physics and its research through the Institute of Cosmology. I am also deeply grateful to him for including Tufts in his estate plans. Allen’s gen­ erous philanthropy will strengthen Tufts’ commit­ment to excellence in teaching and research, and have a tremendous impact on many future generations of students and faculty.”

Tufts Blueprint Fall 2009  

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