Page 1

FALL 2016 » VOL. 2, NO. 2


Castellani Family Gives $1 Million Gift to UB


THE LAWRENCE P. CASTELLANI FAMILY FOUNDATION has made a $1 million gift to the University at Buffalo for the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences’ Build the Vision Campaign and the UB Law School. Castellani said he made the gift in tribute to the leadership of UB Council Chairman Jeremy M. Jacobs; L. Nelson Hopkins III, MD, a SUNY Distinguished Professor of Neurosurgery; and the late William Greiner, UB’s 13th president. A total of $900,000 will be given to the medical school, qualifying the foundation for the Circle of Visionaries recognition society. A portion of the gift will be directed to the Department of Neurosurgery, which Hopkins chaired from 1989 to 2013. The remaining $100,000 will be given to the William R. Greiner Scholarship Fund. Castellani noted that his friendship with the men and their leadership at UB “had a tremendous influence on the gift” and how it will be designated. “I have had a long-term relationship with UB,” said Castellani, who served on the UB Council from 1995 to 2002, and as its chair from 1996 to 1998. “With Bill Greiner, I had a personal and professional relationship that I so enjoyed. I saw how committed he was to UB. “I have the greatest respect for Nick Hopkins, his passion, dedication and abilities in neurology. He is truly a remarkable individual,” Castellani says, noting that his younger brother, Daniel A. Castellani, MD ’81, is a neurologist who studied under Hopkins at UB. “And the UB medical school is driven by the campaign

BUILD THE VISION Campaign Committee Members

d an an o J

leadership of Jeremy Jacobs,” he continues. “I don’t think there is any doubt that as a result of his leadership and support, Buffalo is a much better and more vibrant place to live and work. “With their combined accomplishments on behalf of UB, we saw an opportunity to give to support their efforts and make a difference for the university and for Buffalo,” says Castellani, who made the gift through the foundation with his wife, Joan J. Castellani. He said their two children, Lawrence Castellani Jr. and Julianne Castellani Vardan, are foundation trustees who will oversee its partnership with UB. Castellani said Hopkins took him on a tour of the new UB medical school, which gave Castellani the opportunity to “see the difference in health care for this region that the facility will make.” A senior executive with more than 30 years of experience, Castellani started stocking shelves in 1962 for his family’s upstate New York supermarket chain, which became Tops Friendly Markets. He became CEO of Tops in 1991, and remained in that role until 1998, when he stepped down to run Latin American operations for Royal Ahold NV, a Dutch supermarket operator. He finished his retail career as CEO and chairman of Advanced Auto Parts.

Campaign Enters Final Stretch “ALIVE AND WELL” FILM DEBUTS

Rose Berkun, MD ’92 John J. Bodkin II, MD ’76 Jeremy M. Jacobs, AAS ’60, LHD ’96

AT NO OTHER TIME in the 170-year history of the Jacobs

Nancy H. Nielsen, MD ’76, PhD

School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences have so many come forward to help Build the Vision for its future.

Charles R. Niles, MD ’83 Kenneth J. Roth, MD ’83 Robert G. Wilmers, LHD ’04

This esprit de corps was on full display the evening of September 20 when more than 300 donors gathered at the Westin Hotel downtown to mark the public launch of the $200 million Build the Vision Campaign for the new Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.

More than $176 million has been raised to date and the theme of the evening was clear: With everyone pulling together, the final $24 million will be raised by the close of the campaign in January 2018.

BA ’99 zo and Kathy Tzet

“With their combined accomplishments on behalf of UB, we saw an opportunity to give to support their efforts and make a difference for the university and for Buffalo.”

La wr en ce Ca ste llan i


M ,E Chris Tzetzo

A highlight of the evening was the debut of the Build the Vision Campaign film, “Alive and Well,” produced by local filmmaker John Paget. To view the film, go to:

Above: Jeremy M. Jacobs, left, and Dean Michael E. Cain, MD, toasting the public launch of the Build the Vision campaign.

Untitled-2.indd 1

12/6/16 8:15 AM

Giving Others Educational Opportunities MARITZA BAEZ, MD ’04, NAMES SIGNATURE LEARNING STATION

MARITZA BAEZ, MD ’04, A FAMILY MEDICINE PHYSICIAN at Lifetime Health Medical Group in Buffalo, has made a gift to the Build the Vision Campaign in support of a Signature Learning Station in the main lecture hall of the new UB medical school. Her gift qualifies her for membership in the Circle of Leaders Recognition Society. A native of Buffalo, Baez attended Buffalo public school #33 Bilingual Center and Nichols School, after which she completed her undergraduate degree at Yale University in an accelerated program and gained early acceptance to UB medical school. She received a partial scholarship to attend Yale and a full scholarship from New York State to attend medical school at UB. ar M

itz aB ae z

Baez says that she has been excited about the new Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at UB since it was announced.

“…I want to help students receive the same educational opportunities that I received.” —MARITZA BAEZ

“I work just a few blocks from the construction site, and I’ve watched the progress,” she explains. “I wanted to take advantage of the opportunity to contribute to it because it’s going to be so amazing to have this world-class school in downtown Buffalo. “And I want to help students receive the same educational opportunities that I received,” she adds—”to help them in the way that I was helped.” To learn more about the Circle of Leaders, visit


NADER D. NADER, MD, PHD ’99, PROFESSOR OF ANESTHESIOLOGY AND RESEARCH PROFESSOR OF PATHOLOGY, has joined the Circle of Leaders Recognition Society with a gift to the Build the Vision Campaign that establishes the Nader Cardiovascular Summer Fellowship.

d Na

er D. Na der

A native of Tabriz, Iran, Nader trained and worked as a cardiovascular surgeon early in his career in Pennsylvania before coming to UB in 1992 to complete a residency in anesthesiology and a fellowship in cardiovascular anesthesiology. In 1999, he completed a PhD in microbiology at UB. The Nader Cardiovascular Summer Fellowship, he says, “is geared toward giving medical students exposure to scientific and research methodologies that may serve as

a foundation for inspiring them to pursue a career in academic medicine.” In establishing the fellowship, Nader is also acknowledging the important role that UB mentors played in his career, including: Paul Knight, III, MD, PhD, Distinguished Professor, Anesthesiology and Microbiology; Stanley Schwartz, MD, PhD, Distinguished Professor, Medicine, Pediatrics, and Microbiology and Immunology; Suzanne Laychock, PhD, professor of pharmacology and toxicology and senior associate dean for faculty affairs and facilities; the late Bruce Holm, PhD, SUNY Distinguished Professor, Pediatrics, Gynecology-Obstetrics, and Pharmacology and Toxicology; and the late Boris Albini, PhD, professor of microbiology. “These were great mentors,” he says. “I owe what I have to them, and I want to pay forward.” To learn more about the Circle of Visionaries, visit

THE NEW JACOBS SCHOOL OF MEDICINE AND BIOMEDICAL SCIENCES, now under construction on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, will prominently feature a premiere 400-seat Lecture Hall. Dedicating a LEARNING STATION in the Lecture Hall is a distinctive way to support your community’s medical school, as well as a way to honor or memorialize an individual or group. Of the 400 Learning Stations in the Jacobs School of Medicine Lecture Hall, a limited number remain available for naming. Learning Station donors will be recognized on a plaque in the lecture hall and with a nameplate on one of the hall’s 400 learning stations.

Untitled-2.indd 2

LEAVE A LEGACY… Name a Signature Learning Station

To learn more about sponsoring a Signature Learning Station, or to reserve one today, contact the UB Office of Medical Philanthropy and Alumni Engagement at:


(716) 829-2773, email or visit

12/6/16 8:15 AM

Answering the Call


students have a similar experience.”

Alexander and Natasha Wolfson Join Circle of Visionaries

The Wolfsons, members of the Circle of Visionaries Recognition Society, have given generously to the Build the Vision Campaign to name two Student Group Learning rooms on the second floor of the new medical school. In addition, they joined Robert Wong, MD ’02, and his wife, Sereniti Wong, in naming a Student Study Room on the same floor.

UB medical school is a place that holds special memories for Alexander Wolfson, MD ’02, a partner with Princeton Anesthesia Associates, and his wife, Natasha Wolfson, MD ’03, a radiologist affiliated with the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital and several other medical centers in New Jersey. “It’s where we met, where we got our start and where we made lifelong friends, so we want to give back,” says Alex, whose family immigrated to Brooklyn, NY, from Belarus, when he was 13. Natasha, a native of Long Island, N.Y., concurs: “UB medical school provided a foundation for our success. We had a very positive experience there, and we want to help today’s

A WAY TO TIE TOGETHER MANY OF OUR VALUES Karen and Robert Reed Join Circle of Visionaries, Hayes Society

To learn more about the Circle of Visionaries, visit giving/circle-of-visionaries.

physicians,” says Robert, a family medicine/occupational medicine physician. “The school is an essential part of the foundation that much of Buffalo’s resurgence is being built upon. So, we feel it’s giving back to the whole of the Western New York region.”

Count Us In BUILDING A NEW MEDICAL SCHOOL IS A ONCE-IN-ALIFETIME OPPORTUNITY! Meet some Friends of the School and Alumni who are seizing this chance to transform medical education and health care in Western New York…

1 2


“We feel blessed,” says Robert. “We feel very fortunate in life to have had the opportunities we’ve had, and we believe in giving back.” r Ka


“By supporting the medical school, we’re supporting more than the next generation of

The Wolfsons have two children, Phoebe, age 6, and Raphael, age 4.

d an er d an Alex

Both Robert and Karen were raised in the Buffalo area, and Karen, an anesthesiologist, explains that her family has a long history with UB. “I earned my PhD in molecular biology here before going to medical school, my father joined the engineering faculty in 1963, and my sister went to law school here.”

Through recent donations and a bequest, Karen Reed, PhD ’84, MD ’88, and Robert Reed, MD ’88, are among the newest members of the Circle of Visionaries Recognition Society and the Hayes Society. The couple, who are long-time donors to the James Platt White Society, recently moved back to Buffalo from Corning, N.Y. They explain that giving back to the UB medical school is a way to tie together many of their values.

“The school is expanding, and there’s a lot of growth in Buffalo,” Natasha says. “We’re very excited to see all the changes, and we want to help with that process.”

Na ta sh aW olfs on


To learn more about the Hayes Society, visit

an dR obe rt Re ed


A Resident Goes Above and Beyond OBTAINS $50,000 GRANT TO IMPROVE CARE, TRAINING

ROBERT MACEK, MD, SAW A GAP IN RESIDENCY TRAINING AND IN CONTINUITY OF CARE for his patients, so decided to do something about it. A second-year family medicine resident in the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Macek noticed that women coming to UB’s three family medicine clinics were leaving and going elsewhere for obstetrics care, beginning with the need to have an ultrasound. “Not only were we losing patients, we were also missing an opportunity to train residents and other caregivers in obstetric ultrasound,” Macek notes. To address this gap, Macek applied for and received a $50,000 grant from a charitable trust that his uncle administers for a late friend, Edward J. Muto, who owned SuperTrans, a school bus company in Yonkers, N.Y. Macek used the funds to purchase three portable ultrasound

Untitled-2.indd 3

machines for the UB family medicine clinics. The grant covers “the complete package, including the machines, supplies and training,” he explains, adding that his long-term goal is to fund the training of one attending in each clinic and two residents. The machines will also be used for the Sports Medicine Fellowship in family medicine.

1 Sol Messinger, MD ’57; 2 Raymond Dannenhoffer, PhD ’87, and Mary Anne Dannenhoffer, PharmD ’87; 3 Randall J. Loftus, MD ’92, and Tami Loftus; 4 Maritza Baez, MD ’04

To learn more about these supporters and why they are giving to the Build the Vision campaign, go to

“This will allow us to provide better continuity of care for our patients, while at the same time giving residents and others an opportunity to become certified in bedside ultrasound,” Macek says. A native of Bronx, N.Y., and father of two, Macek selected UB over another residency opportunity. “I really like the program here and the variety of care if offers,” he says. “My family and I love Buffalo and couldn’t be happier.”

k ce Ma t r e Rob

12/6/16 8:15 AM

Nonprofit Org. U.S. Postage PAID Buffalo NY Permit #311

University at Buffalo 916 Kimball Tower Buffalo NY 14214-8028 RETURN SERVICE REQUESTED


Momentum is published twice a year to highlight the tremendous impact our dedicated supporters are having on the Build the Vision campaign for the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, University at Buffalo. Every gift and volunteer effort counts! To learn more about how you can help, call (716) 829-2773 email, or visit:




On our way to $200 million. Every gift counts…

goal $200m

$176 million $170m




raised to date

 The 122 members of the Circle of Visionaries donor society, who have made gifts totaling $100,000 or over to the Build the Vision campaign, qualifying them for special recognition in the atrium and main lecture hall of the new school.  And to the 153 members of the Circle of Leaders donor society, who have made gifts totaling $25,000–$999,999 to the Build the Vision campaign, qualifying them for special recognition in the main lecture hall of the new school. Every gift counts—and we are thankful that we can count on you! See inside for a list of members of the Circle of Visionaries and Circle of Leaders.

Contact Us Today and Help Build the Vision. Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences University at Buffalo Division of Philanthropy and Alumni Engagement (716) 829-2773

Untitled-2.indd 4

12/6/16 8:15 AM

Momentum Fall 2016  
Momentum Fall 2016