Miami Magazine | Summer 2018

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W V U M Turns 50  |  Power of Orange  |  A lma Mater, Stand Forever


Fantastic Voyager The Rosenstiel School’s F.G. Walton Smith research vessel is decked out for seagoing studies that help deepen our understanding of the marine world.

Draft: 7 feet (2.13 meters)

beam: 40 feet (12.19 meters)

Length: 96 feet (29.26 meters)


Inspire a Dream. Grant a Life-Changing Education. As a top-tier research university, the University of Miami is a magnet for the best and brightest students.

These students—the ones willing to work the hardest, go the extra mile, embrace every opportunity—are the most likely to excel at the University and in the world. Yet many of these ambitious, high-achieving students need scholarship support in order to realize their dream of becoming a ’Cane. The University of Miami has made it a top priority to remove financial obstacles to admission, and thus maximize every student’s access to the full range of educational possibilities the University offers. We’re calling on you to open doors to dynamic experiences that change lives and, in turn, allow our graduates to change the world by applying their education in transformative ways.






Consider making a gift to UM scholarships today at

Financial limitations should not be an obstacle to a University of Miami education.

A gift to UM scholarships opens doors and changes lives.

1-866-UMALUMS (862-5867) 305-284-9200






The University of Miami Magazine

Volume 24 Number 2 | Summer 2018


Julio Frenk Senior Vice President for Public Affairs and Communications and Chief of Staff to the President

Rudy Fernandez



Senior Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations


Joshua M. Friedman

Vice President for University Communications

Vessel of Discovery

Jacqueline R. Menendez, A.B. ’83


Hop aboard the Rosenstiel School’s F.G. Walton Smith

Associate Vice President, Communications

research vessel, and meet the crew members who are

Matthew McDonald

unearthing the sea’s secrets.

Assistant Vice President, Communications and Public Relations

Peter E. Howard Executive Director, Communications

Meredith Camel, M.F.A. ’12 Art Director


Senior Graphic Designer

University Journal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2

Production Manager

R+D Update . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9

Tina Talavera Nicole Andújar

Angie Villanueva, A.B. ’12, M.B.A. ’18 Contributors

Maya Bell Julia Berg Jessica M. Castillo Scott Fricker Katy Hennig Robert C. Jones Jr. Michael R. Malone Jennifer Palma Sanchez Barbara Pierce, M.A. ’10 Aaliyah Weathers, ’19

­ Miami is published by the University of Miami Division of University Communications. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Distributed free of charge to alumni and friends of the University. Postmaster and others, please send change of address notification to Miami, Office of Alumni Relations, P.O. Box 248053, Coral Gables, Florida 33124-1514; telephone 305-284-2872. Contributions of articles, photographs, and artwork are welcome; however, Miami accepts no responsibility for unsolicited items.

Eye on Athletics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Faculty Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Student Spotlight

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .


Alumni Digest . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30


Juicing Creativity Students working at Orange Umbrella build professional marketing skills by serving real-world clients in this on-campus agency.


Harmonic Convergence The U’s Alma Mater reflects the resilience and talent of its creators.

In Memoriam . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40


Alumni Leaders . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43

Student-operated WVUM-90.5 FM radio celebrates 50

Class Notes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33

Big Picture . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44

Boosting the Signal years of growth in reach and repertoire.


The comments and opinions expressed in this magazine do not necessarily reflect those of the University of Miami or the staff of Miami. Copyright ©2018, University of Miami. An Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.




Ten Questions with Jacqueline Travisano A closer look at UM’s executive vice president for business and finance and COO With multiple degrees in business administration and a wealth of experience managing assets and annual operating budgets in the billions of dollars, Jacqueline A. Travisano could surely hold a lofty position with a Fortune 500 company on Wall Street. But it is in higher education where she has chosen to make her mark, and “I wouldn’t have it any other way,” says the University of Miami’s executive vice president for business and finance and chief operating officer. Travisano, who previously held positions at Nova Southeastern University and St. John’s University before joining UM in 2017, recently spoke with Miami magazine about everything from her love for higher education and what women can do to rise in the ranks of leadership to the critical role her office will play in helping UM achieve its goals as it nears its centennial in 2025. You’ve probably known about the University of Miami for years. Now that you are part of the U, what surprises you most about it?

I have an appreciation for the people and for the deep connections and history in our community that you can get only by being here. It’s truly a remarkable place that has been on this incredible upward trajectory at 93 years young and, in fact, keeps getting better. The University is so important to so many, and that just feels very special. Your office is responsible for several areas, encompassing every facet of the University, it seems. What’s your strategy for handling it all and getting results?

Operations, business, and finance certainly do touch nearly every facet of the University. Assembling a firstclass leadership team to serve all these stakeholders has been a critical part of the strategy. I believe positive results occur when expectations are clearly communicated and understood and barriers to success are removed. 2 MIAMI   Summer 2018

University endowments are one of the most important aspects of any institution of higher learning. What strategies has your office undertaken to grow UM’s endowment?

Yes, our endowment serves both current needs and the needs of future generations, so we are focused on making sure the University’s investments provide optimum returns at an appropriate level of risk. We also work closely with the Board of Trustees leadership and investment committee and development team to assist in the stewardship of donors. Our donors make the endowment possible, so making sure they have timely and accurate information is very important. Your role as executive vice president for business and finance and chief operating officer has expanded beyond how the job was previously organized. What are the advantages to the University of this new way of doing things?

Our new structure positions the University to maximize efficiency, implement best practices, and meet our strategic priorities. This allows us to streamline reporting and minimize redundancies to unite and better serve all aspects of the University. This new way of doing things is aligned with our peer and aspirant institutions. What’s the most critical role your office plays in helping the University of Miami achieve its goals as it heads toward its centennial in 2025?

Strengthening the University’s financial flexibility and sustainability are critical components as we head into our centennial. We will also continue to improve the systems and processes that support the core operations of the institution, such as our research enterprise, teaching, and learning. Additionally, we will explore ways to invest in capital improvements that make our campuses competitive places to live, work, and learn. All of this is in direct support of our strategic priorities and to prepare us for our centennial and beyond.

What is it about working in higher education that you enjoy?

Everything. There is no other place I would work. The opportunity to be surrounded by leading faculty and researchers, highenergy students, and dedicated staff can only be found here. You’ve been named one of South Florida Business Journal’s Influential Business Women, and the National Diversity Council presented you with its Glass Ceiling Award. What advice do you have for young women, especially our incredible students, who hope to rise in the ranks of leadership?

Set ambitious goals, and once they are achieved, set more. Resilience is a word we use to describe the U, and I encourage young women to take that spirit with them in their lives and their careers. Setbacks occur, but it is how one responds to setbacks that really defines them. What’s your favorite UM sports team and why?

I’m so proud to be a Miami Hurricane. I have nothing but admiration and respect for our student-athletes and coaches. If I had to pick a sport, I would say football because I grew up in the Steel City, and our weekends were spent waiting for and watching Pittsburgh Steelers football games. The year

2017 was a very exciting first year for me at the U, watching the Hurricanes win the ACC Coastal Division, play in the conference championship game, and make it to the Capital One Orange Bowl. From being an active member of the Royal Dames for Cancer Research to serving on the Honorary Board of the Special Olympics of Broward County, you’ve done extensive charitable work. Why is charitable work important to you?

We all have an obligation to give back to the community. Those of us who are as blessed as I am with family and good health and professional opportunities have a responsibility to pay it forward. At a recent Business and Finance Leadership Forum you told attendees about a set of laws (Friday’s Laws) that you’ve kept on your desk for more than two decades. When did you learn about these laws, and how have they been beneficial to you?

I learned the laws in 1998, and I have kept them on my desk ever since. They are simple reminders that tough times do occur, that they don’t last forever, and that each person has control of their words, thoughts, and actions.

Assembly Required U-LINK supports and mentors collaborative teams seeking solutions to complex problems Early in his career, John Bixby, UM’s vice provost for research, partnered with an average of 1.2 co-authors on his published research. Over the past decade, however, Bixby, a neuroscientist on the scientific faculty of The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis, has typically collaborated on studies with more than six co-authors. Bixby, lead coordinator for the UM Laboratory for INtegrative Knowledge (U-LINK), shared his evolution as a team scientist with the members of five teams awarded inaugural U-LINK grants to drive home a point: Multiple experts with varied perspectives, skills, and knowledge must come together to solve complex problems. “It’s like the parable of the blind men touching the elephant,” says Susan Morgan, associate vice provost for research development and strategy, who is working with Bixby on U-LINK. “Large-scale problems have many different facets, and each discipline has a little piece of the puzzle. We need to put all the pieces together to create a more comprehensive picture and more innovative solutions.”

Chosen from 42 applications, three of the teams are pursuing solutions to climaterelated or environmental challenges. One aims to make hurricane forecast products easily understood by underserved populations. Another is exploring ways to restore mangroves, seagrasses, and coral reefs to protect coastal communities from flooding and sea-level rise. The third is examining the ocean’s positive effect on mental and physical health, and the risks posed by negative changes to such “blue” environments. The other two teams aim to use their U-LINK grants to help curb the scourges of terrorism and chronic disease. One seeks to determine how extremism develops online and identify technological, social, and legal avenues to police it. The other seeks a common pathway that increases the risk for chronic diseases­— and interventions to halt their development or progression. Before digging into their research, team members spent two days at U-LINK’s first Science of Team Science

Workshop, learning the art of interdisciplinary collaboration. As Morgan notes, researchers from different disciplines rarely even speak the same language. A model, for example, means something completely different in medicine than it does in meteorological forecasting. Ultimately, U-LINK’s goal is to support interdisciplinary teams in their pursuit of external grants to advance their research—and to build a cadre of researchers who can mentor others in the art of collaboration. “We are not only tackling the big problems,’’ says Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost Jeffrey Duerk, “but sharing best practices about effective interdisciplinary teams.”    Summer 2018  MIAMI 3

University Journal

Healing Hands Take the Helm Haitian-born medical dean embraces Miller School’s hemispheric health quest Henri Ronald Ford was living and working in Los Angeles, California, when Haiti was devastated by a 7.1-magnitude earthquake in January 2010. But that didn’t stop the pediatric surgeon, whose earliest years were spent in Port-auPrince, from rushing back to his homeland to perform lifesaving surgeries on grievously injured children. “It was only a matter of how quickly I could get there,” Ford says. The journey was poignant as well as professionally challenging. At age 13, Ford and his family had fled Haiti, then governed by the notorious Francois “Papa Doc” Duvalier, to make a new life in Brooklyn, New York. Ford went on to earn a bachelor’s degree from Princeton and a medical degree from Harvard Medical School. In June he joined UM as dean of the Miller School of Medicine from the University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine, where he served as professor and vice chair for clinical affairs in the Department of Surgery. Ambitious goals are nothing new to Ford, the sixth of nine children, who spoke no English when he first arrived in the U.S. “Our mother and father demanded that we work hard and do our best,” he says. “There was no substitute for excellence.” Ford selected his medical specialty for the extraordinary impact it could make on his patients’ lives: “When you

neonatal surgical emergencies. Ford had been considered for deanships at other medical schools but was most attracted to the University of Miami—where President Julio Frenk’s vision of the U as a truly hemispheric

“ It’s great to be in a position to give back to an institution that has helped my native country so unselfishly.” operate successfully on a newborn with a surgical emergency, you are adding 85 or 90 years to that child’s life expectancy.” Since the 2010 earthquake, he has made several trips to Haiti, working with the Ministry of Health to help raise infant survival rates by preparing medical students, residents, and attending surgeons to recognize and manage 4 MIAMI   Summer 2018

institution resounded deeply with him, where providing care to the people of Haiti through Project Medishare is a longstanding tradition, and where extraordinary rescue efforts were deployed in the Haiti earthquake’s aftermath. “It’s great to be in a position to give back to an institution that has helped my native country so

unselfishly,” he says. Ford’s enthusiasm about joining UM has yet another, even more personal origin. Nearly 17 years ago, Ford’s sister, Marlene, a school principal in Portau-Prince, sustained serious burns in a freak accident. The family airlifted her to the UM/Jackson Memorial Burn Center, where she spent six weeks in the intensive care unit. “She was on the brink of death,” Ford says. “But the great doctors from the U and Jackson were able to save her. We owe her life to them.” Now he eagerly looks forward to building on that foundation of superb quality to “transform lives, build healthier communities, improve global health, and make the University a major hub for clinical and biomedical innovation and the preferred destination for people seeking the latest advances in research-driven healthcare.”

‘Collaboratory’ 3D printing lab helps engineering students build next-generation skills Before a new additive manufacturing (3D printing) facility opened at the University of Miami’s College of Engineering last fall, the dozens of students in Emrah Celik’s mechanical design class had to use the single 3D printer in his lab to turn their ideas into reality. The logjam was such that, for a time, Celik, an assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, eliminated 3D-printed prototypes as a course component. Now, with more than enough printers to suit their needs, Celik’s students are once again creating prototypes for novel vegetable cutters, juice extractors, and mobility devices, among many other items. Housed in a 5,850-square-foot “maker space” inside the McArthur Engineering Annex, the new College of Engineering-Johnson & Johnson 3D Printing Center of Excellence Collaborative Laboratory includes ten 3D printers that build objects from layers of plastic filaments. College of Engineering Dean JeanPierre Bardet calls the facility a “collaboratory” that gives students the opportunity for “hands-on creativity that allows their imaginations to soar.” While 3D printing has been around for more than 30 years, “what’s different today is the cyber-physical interconnectivity between human and machine,” says Joseph Sendra, worldwide vice president

The lab's different types of 3D printers enable students and faculty to fast-track prototypes of novel devices.

of manufacturing engineering and technology at Johnson & Johnson. Sendra, B.S.I.E. ’93, is one of three UM alumni who helped bring the new J&J lab to the U. He encourages students to take advantage of the opportunity afforded by the lab to collaborate with and learn from J&J engineers. Students are embracing the possibilities. Aerospace engineering major German Acosta Quiros, for example, has been working to optimize biomedical equipment production processes such as the manufacture of catheters. The Hammond Scholar

also 3D printed a component for a hot-air blower system. “It wouldn’t have been possible without the J&J lab,” Acosta says. Celik and his colleagues are as excited about the facility as the students. With funding from NASA, Celik and Ryan Lee Karkkainen, an assistant professor of mechanical engineering, seek to print lightweight, strong composites for use in the aviation and aerospace industries, as well as novel thermoelectric materials to enhance energy efficiency in various devices. Toward that end, they’ll be using the lab’s crown jewels: two 3D metal printers—one that uses titanium powder, the other stainless steel. Celik’s wife, Nurcin Celik, an associate professor of industrial engineering, will use the new equipment in a U.S. Department of Energy study examining the impact of single-stream recycling on recycled paper products. As various recyclable materials are now typically placed in a single cart or bin, “contaminants such as broken glass, metals, and plastics need to be removed from recycled paper,” she explains, noting that the J&J lab’s 3D printers “will save us significant time and effort.” Ashutosh Agarwal, assistant professor of biomedical engineering, is working on simulating the functions of a beating heart, pancreas, and other organs on a chip about the size of a USB stick, allowing his team to conduct risk-free biomedical testing. The J&J lab, says Agarwal, “is a game changer for the college.”

Edward Abraham Named CEO of UHealth Renowned Miller School physician-leader is focusing on strategic challenges Edward Abraham, who joined the Miller School of Medicine as dean and chief academic officer in July 2017, has been named executive vice president for health affairs and CEO of UHealth – the University of Miami Health System. Abraham, who received his medical training at Stanford University and UCLA, is an internationally renowned pulmonary medicine and

critical care physician and an accomplished scientist who has received extensive NIH funding for more than 25 years. Abraham has a proven record of accomplishment, breaking down organizational silos and building teams. At UHealth, his focus is on strengthening the health system’s position in today’s dynamic healthcare landscape through transformational

initiatives designed to optimize the patient experience, recruit outstanding faculty, provide strategic research support, and operate more efficiently. “Dr. Abraham has been diligent in steering UHealth toward greater stability and strategic focus,” says President Julio Frenk. “I will be working very closely with him and his leadership team to ensure that we firmly position our institution to face current and future challenges on a strong footing.”    Summer 2018  MIAMI 5

University Journal

Envisioning a Tribute to Black Alumni Iconic D.C. museum offers inspiration for a campus art installation to celebrate inclusion It’s 7:30 a.m. on a chilly February morning in Washington, D.C., and a group of University of Miami alumni have the entire National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) to themselves. Their tour guide is Derek Ross, B.Arch. ’81, deputy director of construction for the Smithsonian Institution. He narrates the group’s ascent from the subterranean depths of the 15th-century slave trade, each subsequent level gathering natural light in a marvel of architecture, artistry, and emotional engagement. “This is not an African-American history museum,” Ross says. “This is a museum of American history through the lens of the African-American experience.” Back in Coral Gables, a committee is planning to develop an artistic tribute to the University’s AfricanAmerican history and an interactive timeline that not only clarifies chronology but sparks conversation. It’s a history that was only recently unearthed from UM Libraries archives by Black Alumni Society members Denise Mincey-Mills, B.B.A. ’79, Antonio Junior, A.B. ’79, and Phyllis Tyler, B.B.A. ’79. Their research spawned the First Black Graduates Project and UTrailblazers, a February 2017 celebration of black graduates from the first two decades after the University’s 1961 desegregation. The artistic tribute is, says MinceyMills, the “next branch in the tree.” The purpose of the group’s visit to the NMAAHC was to gather inspiration for the project—particularly in the imagination of Cuban-American artist 6 MIAMI   Summer 2018

Xavier Cortada, A.B. ’86, M.P.A. ’91, J.D. ’91 (see “X Factor,” page 31). “We need to honor the successes of our black alumni and the shoulders on which we all now stand,” Cortada says. “But we are also creating a platform to have honest conversations about race in society today.” Today’s students stand on the shoulders of people like John King, B.S. ’78, who came to the U from

fundraising initiative seeks to create an endowed UM scholarship for talented black students. UM Trustee Johnny Taylor Jr., B.S.C. ’89, president and CEO of the Society for Human Resource Management, is leading the effort. “Once an institution like the U becomes more selective,” Taylor says, “it gets harder to be diverse.” Also along on the NMAAHC visit were Dorothy Jenkins Fields, a member of the University of Miami Libraries Visiting Committee who is assisting with development of the timeline, and former United Black

Smithsonian Institution architect Derek Ross, left, leads a private tour of the National Museum of African American History and Culture for fellow UM alumni.

Philadelphia to study biology with aspirations of becoming “the black Jacques Cousteau. “I had a clear idea of what white folks’ life was like because I had to navigate that terrain to get into the University,” King says. “But nobody at the U needed to navigate my terrain. They had to open up to understand.” In addition to garnering support for the tribute, the First Black Graduates Project’s recently launched

Students President Larry Robertson, A.B. ’79. While details of the tribute and timeline are still taking shape, the vision is clear: a place on the Coral Gables campus where new traditions can root, commitments to equality and inclusion can deepen, and members of the U community are inspired to be the shoulders upon which future generations will stand.

Advancing the U Meet Josh Friedman, new senior vice president for development and alumni relations For Joshua M. “Josh” Friedman, who joined the University of Miami on February 1 as senior vice president for development and alumni relations, moving to Miami is something of a homecoming. As a child, Friedman often visited his grandparents at their home near Coral Gables, and he recalls being fascinated by the exotic beauty of South Florida. As for his wife, Marta, an alumna of Florida International University, “She’s thrilled that she can get a great cup of coffee again,” he says, wryly noting that he’s quickly developing a bit of a cafecito habit himself. Friedman’s family, which includes two young children, is “very outdoorsy” and loves to swim. “We’re looking forward to exploring all of the opportunities to have fun outside,” he says. Friedman sees the vibrant South Florida environment as an integral element of the University. “Miami is as dynamic and diverse a megacity as anywhere in the nation,” he says, “and people who are drawn here thrive on that type of energy.” As a result, he continues, “although it is a youthful institution, the University has already accomplished so much. It is competing at the highest levels, whether on the sports field or in the laboratory.

That is a rare and special thing, and I’m delighted to be a part of it.” Friedman joins the University from Arizona State University, where he helped launch ASU’s $1.5 billion comprehensive campaign. His resume also includes leadership roles in fundraising at National Public Radio, Johns Hopkins University’s Berman Institute of Bioethics, Physicians for Human Rights, and Partners HealthCare. A certified fundraising executive, he earned a bachelor’s degree

in history from Johns Hopkins University. Friedman’s varied professional experiences over the years reinforced the importance of strategic direction in fundraising success—another key factor in his decision to join UM. “In President Frenk, we have a visionary leader who has taken the time to conduct a thorough listening exercise,” he says. “Now he and our leadership team are building an incredibly strong foundation to achieve the University’s Roadmap to Our New Century.” The legendary loyalty of ’Canes from every generation, Friedman says, is a cornerstone of that foundation. “The passionate enthusiasm of University alumni is palpable wherever I go, from athletic events to just walking around campus. We need to support our alumni around the world as they draw on their University of Miami education and relationships to be successful—wherever they are and whatever they are doing.” With its unique diversity, global community, extraordinary trajectory of accomplishment, and tireless focus on an even brighter future, “the U is still becoming what it wants to be, and that is very exciting,” Friedman says. “We are creating the future from whole cloth—with pieces contributed from all over the world.”

The U Curls Up With a Book Campus common reading program fosters conversation and reflection What does it mean to be a first-generation college student? Jennine Capo Crucet explores that question in her awardwinning debut novel, Make Your Home Among Strangers, which was selected to launch the University’s common reading program, “One Book, One U.” Incoming students were encouraged to read the book as part of their spring orientation experience, and 100 copies were distributed for free. “‘One Book, One U’ captures the idea of a community conversation,” says Chantel Acevedo, A.B. ’97, M.F.A. ’99, a professor in the Creative Writing M.F.A. program.

Set during the high-profile crisis sparked when 5-year-old Elián González was rescued off the Florida coast, the novel tracks a young Cuban-American woman’s search for identity as she heads off to a prestigious university—a decision incomprehensible to her family. Capo Crucet’s visit to the University in March was complemented by an array of associated events around the U—from panel discussions to theatrical presentations—designed to foster conversations about family, identity, and immigration. The book, says Osamudia James,

vice dean and professor at the School of Law, was “the perfect pick—the sort of thing that helps the U make clear what our values are and to show some of the issues we’re interested in exploring.” “One Book, One U” is supported by a SEEDS grant matched by the College of Arts and Sciences, with support from the Department of English, the M.F.A. program, the School of Law, and Women’s and Gender Studies.    Summer 2018  MIAMI 7

University Journal

Technology That Heals Symposium explores the role of engineering-medical partnerships in improving healthcare Alyssa Basdavanos plans to become a physician. The neuroscience major’s desire to both care for patients and pursue new cures drew her to join some 150 attendees at Engineering and Medicine: A Critical Partnership in Technobiology, held in February on UM’s Coral Gables campus. At the symposium—the first regional joint meeting of the National Academy of Engineering and the National Academy of Medicine—UM President Julio Frenk called on institutions of higher learning to not only create knowledge but transfer that knowledge to those who can take it to the next step. UM Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost Jeffrey Duerk pointed out that such partnerships “not only bring costs down but pave the way for important advances.” Reflecting the University’s commitment to fostering technobiology partnerships, Edward Abraham, executive vice president for health affairs and CEO of UHealth, pointed to the

Ashutosh Agarwal presents research to develop “human organs on chips” at the Engineering and Medicine conference.

Biomedical Nanotechnology Institute at the University of Miami (BioNIUM) and the Center for Computational Science, while College of Engineering Dean Jean-Pierre Bardet noted UM’s investments in STEM and the college’s

3D printing partnership with Johnson & Johnson (see “Collaboratory,” page 5). Leonard Pinchuk, Ph.D. ’84, president and CEO of Innovia LLC, detailed his firm’s development of the first commercially successful angioplasty balloon, the widely used helical wire-based stent, and an implantable elastomer being integrated into glaucoma treatment at Bascom Palmer Eye Institute. Ashutosh Agarwal, an assistant professor of biomedical engineering at UM, presented his multidisciplinary team’s development of “human organs on chips,” microscale mimics of human organ systems designed to enable accurate, risk-free biomedical testing. And Matthew Tirrell, founding Pritzker Director of the University of Chicago Institute of Molecular Engineering, discussed his work in nanoparticles that patrol for symptom-free diseases. As for aspiring physician Basdavanos, “I try to connect the dots,” she said. “A lot of what I learn will go a long way in what’s developed in the future.”

They’ve Got It Covered Students in Professor Rocco Ceo and Jim Adamson’s Design-Build Studio have typically been exposed not only to inspiring ideas, but the vagaries of heat, humidity, and rain. The tarps and canopies used from time to time by Ceo and Adamson, the School of Architecture’s Miller Design-Build Critic and cofounder (with Ceo) of the Design-Build program, could only do so much to repel the elements—and were difficult to store, to boot. But the subtropical South Florida climate is no longer a concern for the class, thanks to the new B.E. & W.R. Miller BuildLab. Designed by Ceo, the open-air, covered structure features ample space and a louver system to regulate temperatures. “We work with electrical tools and other equipment that don’t mix well with rain and standing water,” says Ceo. “This 8 MIAMI   Summer 2018

structure was badly needed.” A naming gift from W. Robert “Bob” Miller, B.S. ’77, chairman of the Miamibased construction firm First Florida, along with contributions from Coastal Construction and other donors, made the BuildLab possible. Miller, who earned an architectural engineerArchitecture students celebrate the opening of the B.E. & W.R. ing degree at UM, named the Miller BuildLab. facility in honor of his late father, who founded First for nonprofit community groups that Florida in 1963 to build Burger King reswouldn’t otherwise be able to afford taurants around the U.S. them,” says Ceo. The BuildLab allows the students to The new facility is right in sync interact with materials and consider with an exploding interest in designconstruction details as they create projbuild in architectural schools nationects ranging from sustainable eco-tents wide. “People are into making things,” to mobile restroom facilities. “We proAdamson says, “and there are limits to vide design and construction services what you can make on a computer.”


New outdoor BuildLab shelters architecture students creating large-scale projects

R+ D Update Revolutionizing Anesthesia A new formula developed by Miller School of Medicine researchers would allow a volatile class of anesthetics to be injected as a liquid directly into the bloodstream, rather than as a gas breathed into the lungs. That would make surgery easier, safer, and cheaper at your local hospital, on the battlefield, in developing countries—even in space. “If proven safe and effective in clinical trials, this new formulation could revolutionize the delivery of general anesthesia,” says Ernesto A. Pretto, Jr., professor of anesthesiology. More than 10 years in the making, the new delivery system was inspired by the idea of using anesthetics to protect insulinproducing pancreatic islet cells during transplantation in patients with severe diabetes. Christopher A. Fraker, M.S.B.E. ’06, Ph.D. ’11, a research assistant

professor at the Diabetes Research Institute, developed an oxygen-carrying fluorocarbon emulsion that, when mixed with anesthetic gas, created an injectable that safely and effectively sedated animals. “We have since learned a lot about the compound and are optimistic that it will be clinically relevant in the future,” Fraker says.

Analyzing Itch A groundbreaking study by a Miller School team of dermatologists has identified the genetic triggers for chronic itch in patients with atopic dermatitis (eczema) and psoriasis. Each condition affects more than 3 million Americans every year. “This is the first study examining all the molecular targets of chronic itch in humans with these widespread skin diseases,” says Gil Yosipovitch, professor of dermatology, co-author of the study, and director of the multidisciplinary Miami Itch Center,

one of the nation’s only such clinics. Using RNA sequencing to analyze genes common to itchy eczema and psoriatic skin and compare them with genes associated with healthy skin, the Miller School researchers found that almost 2,000 genes were differentially expressed between itchy and non-itchy skin in study subjects—what Yosipovitch calls a “fingerprint” of itch-associated mediators and receptors. “These findings,” notes Yosipovitch, “point the way to potential new clinical strategies.”

Numbers Book Cracks Top 10 “Survival is not easy,” writes Caleb Everett, professor and chair of the Department of Anthropology, in the prologue to his newest book, recently named among the “Ten Best Science Books of 2017” by the Smithsonian Institution. Everett’s Numbers and the Making of Us ponders numbers as a relatively recent cultural invention and explores how that understanding has reshaped our lives. “Humans invented numbers—all the research shows that we don’t get there naturally,” says Everett, an anthropological

linguist. “We’ve all been coaxed into this understanding.” The book draws on Everett’s extensive field research in South America, which indicates that the sense of numbers of indigenous peoples in Amazonia differs profoundly from most cultures. Everett, who was able to complete the book with the assistance of an Andrew Carnegie Fellowship, hopes that readers of his book come away with a deepened appreciation of the process by which scientific understanding is accrued. “We are the benefactors of the work of so many inventors and cognitive tools,” he says. “There’s something humbling about that.”    Summer 2018  MIAMI 9

University Journal

For the Common Good Richter Library’s Learning Commons is a one-stop shop for student services and technology resources University of Miami students who need help with writing an essay, solving a differential equation, analyzing and managing data, or completing a class assignment—or who simply seek a congenial setting for collaborating with classmates—are finding all of these things and more at the Learning Commons. The Learning Commons consolidates academic services previously scattered across campus into a “one-stop shop” for students in a magnetic central location that Dean of Libraries Charles Eckman likens to “a campus Switzerland”—the Otto G. Richter Library. Kelly Miller, the Libraries’ associate dean for learning and research services, describes the Learning Commons as “a hub for learning new skills and technologies and for

interacting with other people in a shared community space.” The Writing Center, Math Lab, and UM Information Technology’s Student Technology Help Desk are now all based at the Learning Commons, housed in a dedicated space on the Richter’s first floor. Additional resources include the University’s GIS (Geographic

Information Systems) Lab, Data Services, Digital Humanities division, Learning and Research Services, and tutoring from the Camner Center for Academic Resources. Students also have access to technologies such as 3D printers and video production equipment. Formally launched this spring after being piloted over the past year, the Commons is already a big hit with students—and new features are still being rolled out. Though the learning commons concept is a growing trend in higher education, the University’s approach to creating a robust centralized student resource goes far beyond that found on many other campuses. “I like to believe we’re doing something that’s going to be emulated elsewhere,” says Eckman, “and I think we’re doing it really well.” To find out more about the Learning Commons, visit library.

UML Expands Florida Presence in National Digital Trove University of Miami co-leads launch of Sunshine State Digital Network To expand access to its extraordinary collections, University of Miami Libraries (UML) has in recent years not only digitized thousands of its holdings but uploaded them to the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA). DPLA increases the visibility and searchability of art works, archival documents, and artifacts that reside in organizations ranging from community historical societies to massive cultural institutions. Search queries on the DPLA site return results from multiple institutions, revealing novel connections and sparking new insights. To assist fellow Florida cultural, historical, and educational institutions seeking to share digital assets 10 MIAMI   Summer 2018

on DPLA, UML recently joined forces with the library systems of Florida International University and Florida State University to launch the Sunshine State Digital Network (SSDN). As the Florida portal for DPLA, SSDN provides guidance and technical training. “Through SSDN, we are enabling collections across the state to publish their unique holdings on the DPLA platform,” says Charles Eckman, dean

of University of Miami Libraries and University librarian. “It’s all about fostering discovery and innovation through enhanced access, which is central to our mission and vision.” To learn more about SSDN, visit Explore the DPLA website at

Eye on Athletics

Capping a HighFlying Career Baseball coach Jim Morris retired after 25 winning seasons at the U. Two national titles, 44 consecutive NCAA tournaments, 13 College World Series appearances, and numerous players drafted into the Major Leagues: Jim Morris’s career at the University of Miami is over the top. As the legendary Miami Hurricanes Baseball coach steps down, here’s a look at some of his major ’Canes accomplishments.

1993 New skipper at the helm: Morris—who led the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets to 12 straight winning seasons and four straight ACC titles—is named Miami’s eighth baseball coach.

1994 Off to a stellar start: Leading Miami to a 49-14 record and a College World Series berth, Morris is

named coach of the year by Baseball America.

UM players are ultimately drafted.



Putting Miami back on top: Morris wins his first

Conference champs:

College World Series and Miami’s third, guiding the Hurricanes toward the title with a championship game victory over Florida State. He’s named national coach of the year by Collegiate Baseball Newspaper and the American Baseball Coaches Association.

2001 ’Canes reign again: The Hurricanes win the National Championship with a record-tying victory over Stanford in the College World Series finale. Collegiate Baseball Newspaper and the American Baseball Coaches Association name Morris national coach of the year.

2008 Top skipper: As the Hurricanes capture the Atlantic Coast Conference Coastal Division Regular Season and Tournament championships, reaching the College World Series, Morris is named ACC Coach of the Year.

Morris guides Miami to the 2014 ACC Regular Season Championship— winning a record-setting 24 conference games and tying the ACC’s all-time single-season win total.

2016 A grand slam milestone: Morris becomes just the sixth coach in the history of NCAA Division I Baseball to reach 1,500 career wins as the Hurricanes claim a victory over Louisville.

1K run: The Hurricanes defeat Clemson, propelling Morris to his 1,000th victory with the ’Canes.

Helping Women Student-Athletes Excel To foster outstanding women student-athletes on the field and in life, Miami Athletics has

launched the Building Women Champions campaign with an annual fundraising goal of $1 million. Launched at the fourth annual Celebration of Women’s Athletics event in February, the initiative seeks to help women athletes play, earn, give back, and contribute to our scoreboards and our communities through mentoring programs, leadership development, and career coaching. “At the University of Miami, we are committed to creating an environment that encourages our female student-athletes to raise the bar and be empowered as the leaders of tomorrow,” says Jennifer Strawley, deputy director of athletics, chief operating officer, and senior woman administrator. Show the U’s female student-athletes that you’re on their team. Please visit or call the Hurricane Club at 305-284-6699 to learn more.

An eye for talent: Three Miami Hurricanes are selected in the first round of the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft; eight    Summer 2018  MIAMI 11

University Journal

Enhancing Philosophical Discourse UM names nation’s first endowed chair for the study of atheism and secularism Over the course of history, religious differences have provoked debate, disagreement, and deadly conflicts. Today, however, religious faith is in worldwide decline. As a National Geographic report put it, the world’s newest religion is “No Religion.” To explore the profound implications of this trend, the University of Miami created the Appignani Foundation Chair for the Study of Atheism, Humanism, and Secular Ethics—the first such chair in the country. “Atheism is a philosophical position to be explored and analyzed, and this chair will add to an already established discourse,” says Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost Jeffrey Duerk. Made possible by a $2.2 million gift

from the Louis J. Appignani Foundation, the position advances President Julio Frenk’s initiative to create 100 endowed chairs by the University’s centennial. Anjan Chakravartty, a professor of philosophy at the University of Notre Dame who also directs the John J. Reilly Center for Science, Technology, and Values, joins UM as the new chair on July 1. “The U.S. is currently polarized in so

many dimensions,” says Otávio Bueno, chair of philosophy. “In addition to his outstanding philosophical research, Professor Chakravartty is extremely kind and nondefensive as he brings people together to examine the relevant issues from multiple points of view.” “The University of Miami seems the perfect place where this kind of mandate might flourish, given the wonderful diversity of students who come from so many different parts of the world,” says Chakravartty, who is already planning a fall 2018 course on science and humanism. “As ever greater numbers of people identify with a more secular understanding of the world, it’s important that we think about what that means, and how we’re going to organize our society and live with each other.”

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Faculty Files

Making Headway on Health Disparities Social and cultural neuroscientist Elizabeth Losin conducts her research with an unusual assortment of tools: a realistic replica of a doctor’s office, an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) brain scanner, and a small wand that heats up in calibrated increments to experimentally induce and study pain. Losin, director of the Social and Cultural Neuroscience Lab and assistant professor of psychology in the College of Arts and Sciences, says these items allow her to “really peek under the hood and look at what the brain and body can tell us about differences in the pain experience.” Losin’s work focuses on teasing out the role of cultural experiences and social situations in pain perception and the brain mechanisms that underlie it.

Because pain is a subjective phenomenon, Losin says, “it’s very hard to objectively measure the effects of a painful stimulus. “So we make the stimulus the same for each subject,” she explains. “That way, we know that any variability we’re seeing reflects things about the person or the environment, not the stimulus itself.” Losin studied neuroscience and anthropology at Emory University before conducting research on social learning in graduate school at UCLA. During postdoctoral work in a pain lab at the University of Colorado Boulder, she realized that the social and cultural questions she was interested in had an application in health. “Once I started to study the intersections between cultural variables and pain,

I saw all this work on health disparities,” Losin recalls. “But nobody had looked at these intersections from a brain perspective.” Flanked by a team of two graduate students, two undergraduates, and a fulltime research coordinator in the Cox Neuroscience Annex on the Coral Gables campus, Losin now studies the mechanisms by which cultural processes and demographic disparities affect the pain experience, including the perception of pain and pain treatment within the context of a clinical setting and the doctorpatient interaction. “If we don’t know at a very basic mechanistic level what is going on in the brain, it’s really hard to understand the experience that emerges from it,” she says. Losin’s research at UM

has so far focused on the perspective of the patient. Next, she will be asking more nuanced questions about pain perception and treatment through a pending NIH grant aimed at addressing disparities in opioid prescribing. “We’ll be looking at how clinicians perceive the pain of their patients,” Losin says, “and how that perception affects the way they treat it.” Her literally painstaking study of what Losin describes as the “bidirectional relationship between culture and the brain” has profound implications for addressing health disparities and improving patient well-being. After all, Losin says, “The brain is the final frontier— where it all goes in and comes out.” —Jessica M. Castillo    Summer 2018  MIAMI 13

University Journal

Out of the Darkness Each room told a different story, using videos, social media posts, and other interactive displays to get their narratives across. Like the 25-year-old woman abducted on her way to work in Yunnan, China, and sold into sexual slavery, and the 50-year-old Christian convert murdered by suspected Islamic militants while doing mission work in India. Along with the stories came alarming statistics. Like one sexual assault occurring every 107 seconds in the United States each year and that cars and trucks account for nearly one-fifth of the nation’s CO2 emissions. But the light at the end of a tunnel rife with examples of oppression and intractable problems would come in the form of a discussion on how to overcome and correct such injustices and obstacles. “Education and awareness,” said one woman, as she sat in a circle of about 20 University of Miami students who had just completed a tour of UM’s Tunnel of Oppression. Held for three days this January in the Shalala Student Center’s Grand Ballroom, which was modified to

include rooms separated by curtains, the annual multisensory exhibit challenged perceptions about such issues as racism, sexual violence, human trafficking, religion, climate change, poverty, and LGBTQ marginalization. References to the #MeToo movement and President Trump’s remarks about immigrants could be found in some of the rooms. “But regardless of who is president, there’s still going to be racism, there’s still going to be homophobia and transphobia,” said senior Ryan Kesselring, the social justice education coordinator at the Butler Center for Service and Leadership, which sponsors the tunnel. “Through a lens that allows one to examine topics either up close or from a distance, we try to incorporate different levels of issues, whether they exist on campus, in the Miami area, or on a national and international front,” Kesselring added. “It’s one of the few events on campus that allows students to address such a broad base of issues.”


Students create a multisensory, multimedia tunnel to shed light on oppression

Student volunteers begin planning for the tunnel in the fall, meeting with the different UM student organizations that decide the concepts for each room. “It’s a great opportunity for students to come together each year and create a space around issues they’re passionate about,” said Andrew Wiemer, director of the Butler Center. “I’ve always been passionate about the environment, but now I’m even more so after taking the tour,” said Amanda Chamberlain, a senior public relations major, just after she experienced the exhibit. “It’s inspired me to become a nicer, more understanding person.”

Not Lost in Vain UM students honor lives lost in Parkland and lead advocacy for gun safety The February 14 slayings of 17 students and educators at Marjory Stoneman Douglas (MSD) High School in Parkland, Florida, hit the ’Canes community hard—and none felt the impact more acutely than UM students who are alumni of the stricken high school. They channeled their pain into action, leading a vigil at The Rock on February 20 to honor the lives of the victims. UM senior Maya Lubarsky opened the solemn ceremony. “My teachers at Marjory Stoneman Douglas taught me that I had a voice,” she told the gathering of several hundred, “and tonight I’m using it to honor those lost in this senseless attack.” Alex Margetts, also a senior and MSD alumnus, read out the victims’ names, his voice breaking, as fellow MSD alumni lit candles. 14 MIAMI   Summer 2018

Patricia A. Whitely, vice president for student affairs, praised the alumni for coordinating the vigil. She also remembered the heroism of MSD geography teacher Scott Beigel, who had studied education at UM and was killed while protecting students. Junior Catherine De Freitas, student government vice president, said she had always been inspired by the Mahatma

Gandhi maxim emblazoned on the walls at MSD: “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” Lubarsky and several other students then took that wish beyond the campus, making time in packed schedules to help organize and lead the March for Our Lives rally on Miami Beach on March 24. “This cause is personal to me, but it is also a cause to honor lives lost in all forms of gun violence,” Lubarsky said. “I was so emotional and angry about what happened,” said UM freshman and MSD alumna Makayla Manning, “and the amount of support we received was heartwarming. “Speaking before almost 5,000 people who came to show their respect for my high school and to support this cause was a uniting and amazing experience.”


Student Spotlight After years of tribulation, junior public health major Destiny James had a feeling something good was going to happen. She didn’t know how big or how soon, but she had a feeling. Then in February, superstar rapper Drake dropped by the University of Miami to shoot part of the music video for his chart-topping single “God’s Plan,” and while here, made a $50,000 donation to UM’s scholarship fund. The Canadian musician filmed the process of giving away the video’s entire $1 million budget. He gifted two new cars, paid for the groceries of patrons at a local supermarket, and made donations to the Lotus House homeless shelter, Miami Senior High School, and the UM Frost School of Music. For James, who was selected by the University to receive Drake’s scholarship, it was a life-changing gift. Raised in a low-income area of Denmark, South Carolina, she lived amid poverty but never stopped dreaming. Among the top of her high school class, James was determined to further her education outside of South Carolina. When she was accepted to the University of Miami, James and her family did everything in their power to supplement financial aid and loans to make it work. She held a work-study job to keep her afloat while her mom was struggling to pay for

Destiny’s Surprise Positive persistence makes stars align tuition. Then, her father was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer and died just a few months later. “Before I could get really accustomed to UM, life kind of punched me in my stomach,” she says. Unable to focus in class, James missed the GPA requirement and lost her grants. But she channeled her emotions by starting Live2Win, a nonprofit organization through which she held a 3K charity fundraiser in Denmark—all while applying to transfer to South Carolina schools to ease the financial burden. Then last spring, a $4,500 scholarship from the Black Alumni Society began to turn the tide. James joined Speak What You Feel, an on-campus

poetry club that gave her a creative outlet for stress, and she made the University’s Dean’s List for the first time. So when the University asked her to film a video thanking donors for supporting students like her, she eagerly agreed. As filming began, she was confused to see crowds gathering around her. In a

moment captured in the “God’s Plan” video, Drake appeared and handed her a check, saying, “I’ve read a lot of things about you, heard what you’ve been through and all the hard work you’ve done.” The surprise instantly went viral. Now that the buzz has died, she’s grateful to refocus on what really matters—getting her degree so she can address issues such as access to quality healthcare and clean water in her home community. With the scholarship, James needn’t worry about affording school. But more than anything, she sees a clear message: “Your hard work is not in vain—and everything you’ve been through has just been building you up. Keep doing good, keep putting positivity out, and it will come back full circle.” —Aaliyah Weathers, ’19    Summer 2018  MIAMI 15

University Journal

Focus on Palliative Care Felicia Marie Knaul leads landmark study of unmet global need for pain relief Each year, some 61 million The commission’s goal is people around the world suffer to make an essential package from life-threatening and lifeof palliative care—medicine, limiting illnesses. More than equipment, and trained care80 percent of them have little givers—available to all by the or no access to palliative care year 2030. At the center of the or pain relief. The vast majorpackage is immediate release, ity of them live in low- and oral, and injectable morphine. In middle-income countries where high-income countries, a painoff-patent morphine is rarely relieving dose costs 3 cents per available—and often five times 10 mg. In low-income nations, more expensive than in wealththe same morphine cost 16 cents ier nations. where and when it is available. These and other insights into “If low- and middle-income the urgent global need for palliaFelicia Marie Knaul and Silvia Allende, director of the Palliative countries could obtain morphine tive healthcare were unveiled at Care Clinic at Mexico’s Instituto Nacional de Cancerología (INCAN), at the same price as rich countries, the University of Miami in April comfort a patient during a visit. the annual global price tag for closat the Global Launch Symposium ing the gap in access to morphine of “The Lancet Commission Advanced Study of the Americas and would be $145 million, a fraction of Report: Alleviating the Access Abyss in professor of public health sciences at the cost of running a medium-sized U.S. Palliative Care—an imperative of univerthe Miller School of Medicine. The hospital,” said Knaul, who brought the sal health coverage.” report, reflecting the findings of more commission to UM after its start at the Published in the prestigious medithan 60 experts and researchers workHarvard Global Equity Initiative. cal journal The Lancet, the landmark ing in 25 countries, was coauthored by UM will continue to lead these efforts, report documented the findings of the UM President Julio Frenk. with a particular focus on the Americas. three-year global initiative, led by the “The global pain crisis can be reme“I have experienced the pain of canUniversity of Miami in collaboration died quickly and effectively,” Knaul told cer,” said Knaul. “I have accompanied with Harvard University. The commore than 200 symposium attendees. a loved one dying in the pain of cancer. mission was chaired by Felicia Marie “We have the right tools and knowledge, No human being should go through this Knaul, director of UM’s Institute for and the cost of the solution is minimal.” without pain medicine.”

Handy Advice Broadway composer and writer Jeff Marx arrived at the University of Miami carrying a black duffle bag. Its contents—“Nicky,” a puppet from his Tony Award-winning musical, Avenue Q—thrilled the musical theatre students who had gathered to hear about Marx’s experiences in the industry and his suggestions for success. One elated senior who held and operated Nicky called it a “life-changing moment.” Marx, who grew up in Hollywood, Florida, explained to the rapt group why he never gave up despite discouragement and setbacks. He recalled a moment during his sophomore year of college, when “one of the teachers sat with me and said, ‘I’m going to be frank with you: you 16 MIAMI   Summer 2018

have no talent and you’re never going to make it, so I suggest you find something else to do.’ That was pretty devastating.” Marx shifted his aspirations to entertainment law, and it was in law school in New York City that he began collaborating with Robert Lopez to create Avenue Q. When Marx pulled his Tony Award from the duffel bag, the students took turns holding and taking selfies with the prized statuette. “Even if you’re not a great singer or dancer, there are many ways to work on


Avenue Q co-creator encourages musical theatre students with souvenirs of his success

Broadway shows or musicals,” he told the students. “My advice is to take an inventory what you’re good at and what you can do with your talents.”

Zooming in on Black Culture UMTV airs its first-ever series designed to showcase the experience and excellence of black students “The media often depict black people and people of color in a stereotypical and negative way. We want to provide a space for black excellence to be shown,” said sophomore broadcast journalism and sport administration major Rachel Smith during the closing segment of the inaugural episode for UMTV’s newest show, The Culture. Smith and sophomore motion picture major Kristion Matas had worked on other shows for UMTV, the University’s awardwinning, student-run television station which operates out of Students Rachel Smith and Kristion Matas create, produce, and host UMTV’s The Culture. the School of Communication and broadcasts locally in Coral Gables and on TV lets you know that you can do While having a team of students online. It was while sitting together at a something too.” from different disciplines introduces UMTV meeting that they first discussed They began pitching the concept to some production challenges, it also their longing for more diversity reflected anyone who would listen, but things enriches the working environment. in the station’s staff and topics. really started moving when the show’s More experienced crew members have “We don’t see as much coverage of the faculty advisor, Winston Warrior, B.B.A. been helping newbies learn the equipUnited Black Students events, the African ’93, M.B.A. ’96, got involved. ment and broadcast workflow. Students Union events, the Caribbean “The University has always embraced Production crew member Morgan Students Association, or the National difference, so when I think about what Threatt, a freshman broadcast journalPan-Hellenic Council, and we felt like the show is trying to do, which is create ism and public relations major, loves that was something that was missing; we a black voice and a vehicle by which that The Culture is not hesitant to cover black kids can controversial topics that may make express thempeople uncomfortable, but through selves, see these conversations the show is educatthemselves on ing students and debunking misconTV, and have ceptions. Thus far, the students have stories that can tackled topics ranging from gun violence relate directly to the wage gap to Beyoncé. to their experiThe crew recently completed prowanted to highlight them,” Matas says. ence, it makes absolute sense,” Warrior duction of the fourth episode of The Matas and Smith soon began develsays. A lecturer in the School of Culture, which is among seven programs oping a concept for a show highlighting Communication, Warrior says he sees airing on UMTV. A fluctuating cohort the black experience at UM. They began the same fire in Matas and Smith that he of roughly 100 students at UMTV shaping elements like “Roundtable,” had as a student leader and does all he produces content that ranges from a partially modeled after TV One’s Sister can to advocate on behalf of the show. live weekly newscast to a late-night Circle, and “Athletic Aesthetic,” inspired With Warrior’s support, executive comedy sketch to two Spanish-language by Smith’s interest in sports. Throughout producers Matas and Smith received programs. their preproduction research, they were the green light to film a pilot, but imme“We want [The Culture] to be surprised to see how few programs had diately they encountered an unexpected around as long as UMTV is around, black voices represented. obstacle: a lack of interested students Matas says, “and we want other schools “There are not a lot of shows that with broadcast experience. to pick up on it and follow in our foottalk about what’s going on in the black “That is one of the unique parts steps because we feel there needs to be community, which is why representaof the show, that most of our cast an environment for students of color to tion matters so much,” Smith says. “For and crew are not in the School of talk about issues that affect them—and me, growing up seeing black journalists Communication,” Smith says. be taken seriously.”

“There are not a lot of shows that talk about what’s going on in the black community.”    Summer 2018  MIAMI 17

Vessel of Discovery The research vessel F.G. Walton Smith, owned and operated by the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, is a distinctive resource for scientific expeditions. BY JESSICA M. CASTILLO

GAZING DOWN INTO THE COBALT-BLUE WATER OF THE ATLANTIC ONE DAY last fall, a group of researchers, students, and guests aboard the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences’ research vessel (R/V) F.G. Walton Smith stood transfixed—partly to restrain their queasiness as the vessel rose and fell through six-foot waves, but mostly to revel in the pod of dolphins frolicking below. Lillian Custals, M.A.L.S. ’12, assistant scientist in the Rosenstiel School’s Department of Ocean Sciences, cooed a warm greeting to the dolphins as the observers wondered aloud whether their marine companions were of the bottlenose or Atlantic spotted variety. Custals and the Rosenstiel School researchers aboard are on a biannual expedition to collect deep-sea water that will ultimately help scientists better understand the chemistry of the world’s oceans. They departed at daybreak for this one-day trip to the Gulf Stream, 15 miles east of Key Largo. At sea for an average of 150 days a year, the 96-foot catamaran is one of 18 research vessels in the University-National Oceanographic Laboratory System, a consortium of nearly 60 academic institutions and national laboratories.

18 MIAMI   Summer 2018

At sea for nearly 150 days a year, the F.G. Walton Smith offers undergraduate and graduate marine science students unparalleled research experiences.


“The F.G. Walton Smith is essential to our ability to understand and address issues related to ocean circulation, climate studies, natural hazards, human health and marine ecosystems, and to providing a best-in-class marine science education program for our undergraduate and graduate students,” says Rosenstiel School Dean Roni Avissar. Its seven-member crew, three of whom live onboard, are part of Rosenstiel’s Marine Operations team, which also includes a fleet of small boats and programs devoted to diving and small boat safety, the Rosenstiel motor pool, and a marine tech program that oversees research equipment on three Royal Caribbean cruise ships. “We’re here to help the researchers do what they do best, making sure they have what they need to help them conduct their science,” said Marine Operations Director Richard R. Behn, a retired one-star rear admiral from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Commissioned Corps. To take an interactive look at the R/V F.G. Walton Smith, watch videos from the research trip, and see photos and polls, go to: https://features.      Summer 2018  MIAMI 19

Sampling the Gulf Stream The samples being collected today are from below the surface of the warm oceanic current, whose steady flow helps ensure relative purity. They will become part of Rosenstiel’s consensus reference material program. Led by Dennis Hansell, professor and chair of ocean sciences, the initiative builds on Hansell’s earlier work collecting ocean water samples from locations that included 2,600 meters below the surface of the North Atlantic’s Sargasso Sea. These days, Hansell and his colleagues collect water samples in the Florida Straits at depths of up to 700 meters to serve as consensus reference material for the study of dissolved organic carbon in the world’s oceans. “The concentrations of carbon and dissolved nitrogen in the deep ocean are very constant,” Custals explains. “Changes in these concentrations take thousands of years.” Treated and placed in vials, the water samples will eventually be shipped from Hansell’s lab to scientists around the world, who buy the material as a reference standard for their own research. Also on board are Chelsi Lopez, an ocean sciences Ph.D. candidate, and Claudia Alvarez, a research associate in the Department of Marine Biology and Ecology. Albert Ortiz, a research associate in the Department of Ocean Sciences, has joined the journey to collect and test water samples for phosphorus on behalf of Kim Popendorf, assistant professor of ocean sciences. On the upper deck, he works with Adriana “Andi” Fragola, an M.P.S. student in marine conservation, and Jake Jerome, an administrative assistant at Rosenstiel who recently earned an M.S. in marine affairs and policy. After fashioning hoses and setting up two bins to collect and store the water samples, the three head to the main deck. There, Jerome works alongside electronics expert Denis Ilias, a 12-year veteran of the Walton Smith crew, to lower an apparatus known as a CTD (conductivity, temperature, and depth)

20 MIAMI   Summer 2018

Student and faculty researchers aboard the F.G. Walton Smith collect water samples in the Florida Straits at depths of up to 700 meters.

rosette into the water at a series of decreasing depths. Once the rosette is in place, Ilias remotely designates the timing as the top and bottom of each of the rosette’s 12 Niskin bottles, designed specifically for this purpose, open and close. As the bottles fill up, electronic instruments measure the salinity, temperature, depth, and concentration of particles in the water column. After each submersion, Custals helps her team transfer the water to corresponding color-coded and labeled containers—after first swirling some of each water sample into its designated bottle, then pouring it out. The step ensures that the samples contain only the waters they were drawn from. As Fragola handles one container, her bicep tattoo of latitude and longitude coordinates becomes visible. The coordinates, she explains, pinpoint the spot where she released leatherback sea turtles in a remote marine sanctuary off the coast of Nicaragua last year. “It was one of the most transformational experiences of my life,” she says. Fragola’s subsequent proposal to manage the sanctuary received funding from Fabian Cousteau, grandson of the legendary aquatic explorer Jacques Cousteau.

Meanwhile, Marine Operations team members Stewart Bell and Kevin Jones, serving today as acting captain and acting first mate, are roving through the vessel, staying in constant communication with the scientists to ensure that they are reaching their intended cast sites and collecting the water samples and data they need. On the main deck, clambering in and out of the engine room, Mike Shoup, the ship’s chief engineer, and Carol Mandel, the assistant engineer, make sure that the vessel’s engines are staying cool and running smoothly. Throughout the expedition, the engineers must strain the water that cools the engines and clean the removable cylinders that fill up quickly with seaweed and indiscriminate sea junk. In the galley, chef Randal Hughes is preparing the day’s third and final meal: tabbouleh salad, barbecued chicken, and tostadas with all the trimmings. Downed with some ginger ale, the almond croissants Hughes made for breakfast help ease some of the guests’ seasickness. But the rough ride barely fazes the crew as they navigate the four- to six-foot waves at a leisurely 10 knots, or about 11.5 miles per hour. “The ship,” says Bell with a nonchalant shrug, “is very stable.”

A Floating Research Hub As a shallow-water vessel, the Walton Smith makes it possible for the researchers to navigate into shallow bays and areas. Its three small work boats can be deployed to carry divers to otherwise impassable sites. It can sail without refueling for up to two weeks and desalinize seawater for a constant supply of drinking water. Thanks to these features and many more, the vessel commands rental fees of $15,000 per day—but it’s available only to scientists seeking to add to our understanding of the world’s oceans. “The research must be for the sake of contributing to science,” Behn says, “not for commercial or profitmaking reasons.” Scientists from the University of Buffalo and the University of Mississippi spent two weeks in late November and early December, respectively, aboard the Walton Smith to study the impact of hurricanes Irma and Maria on coral reefs in the U.S. Virgin Islands. In 2018 the vessel will host, among others, researchers from the University of Southampton in the United Kingdom and the National Science Foundation, exploring a host of oceanographic questions. Meanwhile, before nightfall, Bell steers the Walton Smith through Government Cut and Fishermans Channel. The boat passes South Beach on the starboard side, Fisher Island on the port side, the glittering downtown skyline straight ahead. Mandel glances appreciatively at the magnificent view as she strains the cooling water for the ship’s engines. Jones prepares the anchor. With the sun setting and a cool breeze stirring, the ship docks at the Rosenstiel School’s picturesque Virginia Key campus. The scientists, guests, and crew disembark—windswept, sunburned, exhausted, and satisfied by a productive day that will add to our understanding of ocean health. Gathering their gear and steadying their sea legs, the researchers pause to revel for a moment in the breathtaking views of Biscayne Bay at dusk. Then they turn and lug their troves of data to the lab.

THE F.G. WALTON SMITH: A SNAPSHOT Christened in 2000 in honor of the founder of the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, the R/V F.G. Walton Smith is utilized by scientists around the world for a variety of marine research endeavors. SPECIFICATIONS • Vessel Type: Aluminum

dual-hulled catamaran • Length: 96 feet • Beam: 40 feet • Draft: 7 feet • Weight: 97 GRT (gross registered tons) CAPACITIES • Fuel: 10,000 gallons • Potable water: 3,000-gallon reverse osmosis watermaker • Accommodations: 20 berths for seven crew members and 13 scientists OPERATION • Speed: 9 knots cruising • Propulsion: Twin Cummins QSK 19 760hp each • Propellers: Servogear variable pitch • Electrical dynamic positioning DECK FEATURES • 950 square feet of outdoor

working space • Two winches, plus a portable winch with fiber optic cable • A-frame with 10,000-pound lifting capability

RESEARCH EQUIPMENT • Satellite and cell phone

communications for voice and data • Oceanographic transducers • Meteorological and oceanographic sampling equipment • Notched stern and moon pool for specialty scientific gear • 680 square feet of combined wet and dry laboratory space • Twin 80kw electric generators UPS in laboratories      Summer 2018  MIAMI 21



Students in the U’s Orange Umbrella Consultancy gain career skills by providing communication services to real clients. “SIX MINUTES ’TIL STATUS REPORT,” A STUDENT SHOUTS INTO the sleek ambiance of the School of Communication’s Koenigsberg

and Nadal Interactive Media Center.  The heads-up rallies his fellow members of the Orange Umbrella Consultancy, scattered among the center’s low-profile sofas, circular desks, and green-walled cubicles.

22 MIAMI   Summer 2018


he students tap last-minute notes onto laptops as Melissa Jane “M.J.” Barnes, managing director of Orange Umbrella, strides to the status board with Captain, her Maltese poodle mix, in her arms. “Let’s hear how things are going,” she prompts. One by one, the students share capsule reports of their progress on a multitude of projects: websites uploaded, videos produced, social media campaigns underway. Since it launched in January 2017, Orange Umbrella has made pretty good progress itself. Within 18 months of opening for business—shortly after the inauguration of the media center that serves as its home base—the student consultancy had earned about $37,000 in client revenues. It currently serves a sizable roster of clients while providing some 50 students with real-world professional experience. Though the consultancy is staffed primarily by students across the School of Communication, it is open to any UM student whose academic skills can be used to help fulfill a client’s communication needs. Students from the Miami Business School, for example, assist with sales, operations, and human resource advisement. Orange Umbrella’s new strategy department is staffed with psychology and marketing majors. To facilitate creative collaboration, the consultancy recently combined its production and creative departments into one that encompasses film, copywriting, photography, and social media. “The changes opened up our workflow and have elevated the work we can do for clients,” says Barnes. “Now we’re offering concepts grounded in research.”


Participation in Orange Umbrella takes the form of a class of between one and three credits. But with an intensity fueled by urgent business issues and a service portfolio driven by client demand, the consultancy redefines the very notion of a college class. Its products and services track with those found in the professional communication consulting world, including branding, website design, video production, copywriting, and event management. “We’re able to do that,” says School of Communication Dean Gregory Shepherd, “because we are one of the broadest schools of communication in the country.” The Interactive Media Center, which provides an environment much like that of a professional agency, is central to Orange Umbrella’s existence and development. “From the get-go,” says Shepherd, “we imagined building out this space as an exciting window on the world that showcases interactivity—and locating the consultancy in a space that feels state of the art.” Barnes, Orange Umbrella’s founding director, ventured to Miami from Houston, Texas, ten years ago to take a job at Crispin Porter + Bogusky. Her six-plus years with the renowned global advertising agency proved invaluable when she joined the School of Communication as a lecturer two years ago. In fall 2016, Shepherd asked her to help develop the framework for the student consultancy.

After a soft launch, the initiative expanded quickly. “With growth and referrals, we evolved very organically,” Barnes says. “It was nebulous, chaotic, energetic, and amazing.” Soon it was clear that the consultancy needed a brand identity of its own. The selected name not only references one of the colors that ’Canes bleed and the umbrellas that dot the Gables campus; it also evokes the concept of an overarching entity that connects various endeavors and disciplines.


Among Orange Umbrella’s early successes was a Kickstarter program for Growers 2 Home that raised $13,000 in a month. When the Doral-based flower importer was seeking to invigorate its marketing efforts, Growers 2 Home business development executive Roberto Reyes reached out to the University through his sister, a UM grad. Meeting occasionally with Reyes and his colleagues under Barnes’s direction, students including senior Christian Felipe suggested revisions to the Growers 2 Home pricing scheme and developed a new communication strategy that, says Reyes, has helped the firm blossom. “It’s definitely been a win-win,” Reyes says. “Our partnership complements their coursework. For us, it’s a way to accomplish something important for our business.” “I’ve gained a lot more experience as a leader,” Felipe says. “I’m doing assignments like those I’ll be doing in the work world.” Orange Umbrella clients also have included an investment company, The Lennar Foundation Medical Center, a start-up subscription-based box service, and several businesses needing

The managing director of Orange Umbrella, Melissa Jane “M.J.” Barnes, and her Maltese poodle mix, Captain      Summer 2018  MIAMI 23

To learn more about the Koenigsberg and Nadal Interactive Media Center—home to the Orange Umbrella Consultancy—visit: View projects created at Orange Umbrella and more here: At Orange Umbrella, students work collaboratively in an agency-like atmosphere to provide a growing roster of clients with services ranging from graphic design and copywriting to social media campaigns and market research.

assistance with website redesign, blogs, and social media. “It’s amazing to work with not only start-up clients and nonprofits but some really thriving businesses that come to the students for help figuring out how they can communicate their business model on social media,” Barnes says. Ariella St. Rose, a senior, joined Orange Umbrella for some extra learning experiences as she looked ahead to her post-graduation life. She has researched, written, and designed portions of a client’s user interview aimed at increasing engagement. St. Rose also created a QR code and handled print marketing for another—all new additions to her skill set. “I have excellent teachers, but this is learning that you couldn’t possibly get in class,” she says. “You don’t know until you go out into the world—things are so much different than you imagine.”


While she admits that a consultancy with actual clients can be a bit stressful, St. Rose appreciates the challenge of real deadlines: “When you meet them, it feels like a reward.” Orange Umbrella clients are reaping the rewards as well. “We successfully wrapped up a number of contracts last semester and have had an influx of inquiries from businesses large and small, as well as from the University president’s 24 MIAMI   Summer 2018

office,” says Barnes. A couple of contracts with one new, high-visibility client——has led to a very fruitful partnership. Barnes credits a good part of the consultancy’s success to support from the OU nine-member advisory board—four School of Communication professors and five experienced community members. “There’s a wealth of interest among people both on and off campus who are willing to give their advice, expertise, and time to help us move forward,” she says. For Dean Shepherd, Orange Umbrella has already far exceeded expectations. “I sometimes worry that it’s tempting for students to spend too much time in the consultancy,” he says. “They love it—it’s where they want to be. Yet they still have classes to take and other obligations. They have to keep their priorities straight.” So far, the tradeoff is working. Shepherd credits the students with continuing to foster the work ethic and commitment to excellence the consultancy forged early on. “The quality of the clients and the students’ dedication to the quality of work they’re providing are remarkable,” he says. “We don’t want to get a lot bigger right now. I’d rather be small and excellent than large and mediocre.” After all, Shepherd notes, as the students have found in both their client projects and the growth of the consultancy itself, “It takes a lot of effort to build a brand.”

HURRICANE debate institute      Summer 2018  MIAMI 25


Co mp ose g dm co etin ore t e l f l a l h , an 90 years ago in ab th ora nes eU a C ’ t i y on b ’s b etween two extraordinar ne. elo o n a ved ys th anth a w e em is notable in mor


m o nious c e n e g r e v n o C


THE UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI’S ALMA MATER IS SUNG WITH PRIDE at homecoming and athletic events and with bittersweet emotion at commencement ceremonies. Yet most of us don’t know anything about its creation by two people who wended very different ways to the University of Miami soon after its founding. The Tunesmith: Gifted Versatility Christine Asdurian (a.k.a. Christine Oviatt Asdurian Thompson), M.A. ’27, was a talented pianist from Armenia. Her dramatic life journey began when she was just 3 years old: She recalled being carried by her newly widowed father, a clergyman, across her war-blasted country on a camel in a basket lined with red satin. The two ultimately made it to the United States, but Asdurian’s father died soon after. At age 7, Asdurian was adopted by two sisters, Sarah A. Thompson and Esther H. Thompson, of Litchfield, Connecticut. Education was a priority

for the Thompsons, and Asdurian took full advantage of the opportunities they offered her. At Converse College in Spartanburg, South Carolina, Asdurian earned Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Music degrees in 1916 and was voted “most talented” by the senior class. The next year, Asdurian earned a Master of Arts in English and Comparative Literature from Columbia University and married William Robert Suda. They had a son in 1920 but separated soon after. From 1924 to 1926, Asdurian worked as a pianist for the department store chain Gimbels, performing live throughout the New York tristate area for a regional radio show. Arriving in Miami in 1926 to pursue advanced

Southern suns and sky-blue water, Smile upon you Alma Mater; 26 MIAMI   Summer 2018

musical studies at the University of Miami, she studied piano with Earl Chester Smith and was mentored by UM’s first music dean, Bertha Foster. UM’s first president, Bowman F. Ashe, often recruited her to perform at civic functions and donor appreciation events.

The Lyricist: Tone-Deaf but Tireless Meanwhile, William “Bill” S. Lampe was headed toward his own date with ’Canes destiny. In 1925, Lampe had been a spirited liberal arts student at the University of Pittsburgh when he was expelled two weeks before graduation, says his

ard to n presenting aw

so President Pear

Bill Lampe

g Female students at the Mia mi Conservatory of Music

Christine Asdurian

son Seth Lampe, for too much partying. So Bill Lampe made his way to Miami, driving an old Graham-Paige over 1,600 miles of unmarked dirt roads and, he later told his son, “across the backs of alligators” as he approached the city to join the Miami Herald as a sports writer. In the summer of 1926, Bill Lampe helped UM promote its first football game, scheduled for September 17. Diving into various PR and administrative roles at the U, says Seth Lampe, “He wrote just about everything, including all the football cheers, program notes, and signage.” While Seth Lampe recalls that his father “couldn’t carry a tune in a basket,” Bill Lampe wrote the words to the school anthem on the back of an envelope of an overdue bill. He then tapped Asdurian to compose the music. UM’s first football game was called off when a Category 4 hurricane ravaged the region just as the new university’s first classes were about to begin. The following month, as Miami began its slow recovery from the storm, the U’s Alma Mater was sung for the first time.

Coda: Lives of Varied Accomplishments

Asdurian returned to New York in 1929, resuming her live radio performances until 1931. She stopped playing the piano after a serious back injury but soon found a new outlet for her artistry: designing ballet costumes. She moved to Los Angeles, California, and worked for a time with famed dancerchoreographers David Lichine and Tatiana Riabouchinska. In 1961, Asdurian wrote to the University of Miami’s second president, Jay F. W. Pearson, to congratulate him on the University’s desegregation and enrollment of more than 70 AfricanAmerican students. “Do they still sing our Alma Mater?” she asked in closing. Yes, President Pearson assured her, adding “We will always think of you as one of our fine musicians.” Asdurian died in 1963 at the age of 70. Bill Lampe moved back to Pittsburgh in 1928. He married his college sweetheart, Harriett, and rose through the editorial ranks of the

Hearst Corporation to become editor in charge of special projects. The company championed the creation of an interstate highway, and Bill Lampe met with President Dwight Eisenhower every week for a year. Thanks in part to those conversations, driving from state to state is now far easier (and less infested with alligators) than it was in Lampe’s day. Later, as an advertising executive in Detroit, he helped to found the PGA. In 1948, Lampe was named an honorary UM alumnus. Some years later, Lampe was told about a friendly campus debate regarding how to sing the Alma Mater. “What scares me,” he joked, “is that somebody may ask me to write a second verse.” Lampe was named an honorary alumnus of the Band of the Hour, UM’s marching band, in 1990. He died in 1992 at the age of 86. Engraved in the hearts of the ’Canes family, the Alma Mater is much more than its words and melody; it is a testament to the resilience, talent, and fruitful collaboration of its creators.

Special thanks to: Koichi Tasa/University of Miami Archives and Special Collections; Jeffrey R. Willis/Converse College Archives and Special Collections; Jocelyn Wilk/Columbia University Archives; and Seth Lampe.      Summer 2018  MIAMI 27

Boosting the Signal BY A A L I YA H W E AT H E RS , ’ 1 9

From spinning vinyl to streaming digital, WVUM celebrates its half-century ride on the changing airwaves of radio with a major renovation.

Some 50 years ago, a group of University of Miami engineering students got caught running a pirate radio station out of an Eaton dorm room. Today the student-run station, WVUM 90.5, is a mainstay in South Florida’s alternative music scene and is nationally acclaimed as a community where students express themselves freely and gain professional experience as radio broadcasters. Back in the summer of 1967, UM broadcasting major Peter Berlin, A.B. ’68, was home in New York and taking classes at nearby Hofstra University. Radio was booming, so when Berlin learned Hofstra had its own campus station, he signed up to host an evening show. When he returned to UM in the fall and got wind of the renegade station operating out of his dorm, he approached The Men’s Residence Hall Association to establish something official.

28 MIAMI Summer 2018

Along with the team he assembled, Berlin began putting together contracts, begging local radio stations to donate their outdated equipment, and negotiating with both University administrators and the FCC to get WVUM on air. His was the very first live voice in February of 1968. “Rick Whitman [then station engineer] flipped the power button on, and I said, ‘This is WVUM, Voice of the University of Miami testing on 90.5 FM,’” Berlin says, recalling one of his favorite campus memories. Berlin went on to work in radio for years and now curates 1960s playlists for a morning show. WVUM was registered as an educational station, with the goal of promoting campus events and activities, along with airing some music and specialty programs. The initial broadcast was only 10 watts, reaching just around the proximity of

hosting events, offering various donation packages, and begging their families to help keep the station afloat. This year, the students made one of their biggest pushes yet. “A lot of our equipment in the studio hadn’t been renovated in over 40 years, and it was failing almost every day. People just always had to go in there and fix it,” says current general manager Emmi Vélez, a junior journalism and political science double major who has worked at WVUM since her freshman year. “The station had a second production studio that was nonfunctional, but with the new equipment, the students will be able to literally double their workload.” Securing the funding for a full renovation of the WVUM studio, located on the first floor of the Whitten University Center, has been every general manager’s top goal over the past several years. Vélez accomplished that in the spring 2018 semester when the Division of Student Affairs granted the station a $150,000 loan to be paid off over the next five years.


campus. The most recent update in 2013 to 5.9 kw means you can tune in anywhere in Miami-Dade County. The station’s online livestream attracts listeners from all over the world, bringing the estimated tally to 60,000 listeners weekly. And instead of spinning vinyl, DJs use software to queue up songs automatically from a digital music library curated and updated weekly by the music directors. As the station’s geographic reach grew, so did its repertoire. The overall sound is alternative and electronic music, and the staff actively seeks out music not played on any other Miami station to create WVUM’s distinctive sound. There are music specialty shows, talk shows, news reports, and broadcasts of Hurricane Sports. From one hour to the next you never know what you may catch—from video game music to psychedelic rock, from a science talk show to a dissection of New Orleans-influenced jazz and hip-hop. Some of the specialty shows are passed down over time and have become legendary on the airwaves, like the 24-yearold Electric Kingdom Live or the even older Metal Revolution. Students work hard to curate their shows, some consistently bringing in guests and interviewing local musicians. Over the years, prominent guests like contemporary jazz band Snarky Puppy and former University of Miami President Donna Shalala have all been featured on the air. “We treated our positions at WVUM like they were real jobs,” says former WVUM general manager Amber Robertson, B.S.C. ’12, noting that the professional skills she honed at WVUM have translated to her current position as marketing manager at CBS Interactive. “I think the fact that we put so much time, love, and passion into the station really made a difference.”   Paul Driscoll, vice dean for academic affairs in the School of Communication and WVUM’s faculty advisor for 27 years, credits the staff for making the station the best it can be. “It is completely operated by the students; I am hands off unless there is a legal issue,” said Driscoll, who primarily handles the station’s license with the FCC. “I think it is important to let the students make the decisions on the content, as it gives them a chance to be creative.” Driscoll, whose Ph.D. is in mass communications, notes that the station’s cutting-edge format would not work in commercial radio but has worked for WVUM thus far and in a top-15 radio market in the country, no less. “WVUM is the most powerful media outlet that the University has to reach the local community,” he says. In 2011 the station earned national recognition with an MTV Woodie Award for best college radio station. It is consistently included in the Miami New Times annual “Best of Miami” list and has received multiple awards from the National Broadcast Society. Many of these awards are based on voting by loyal listeners. Much more than a club, WVUM is a nonprofit organization funded in large part through underwriting—paid promotional content for local businesses. Every spring WVUM students run the station’s Radiothon fundraiser,

Opposite page: Peter Berlin, left, was the very first live voice on 90.5 FM in 1968; current WVUM station manager Emmi Vélez, right, spearheaded efforts to fund a major studio renovation. Above, left to right: Senior Associate Dean of Students Steven Priepke, station manager Emmi Vélez, and WVUM faculty advisor Paul Driscoll show their pride for the studio renovation, which includes a mural by popular Miami street artist David Anasagasti, better known as Ahol Sniffs Glue.

The station hosted a ribbon-cutting celebration in April to unveil its updated equipment, streamlined workspaces, and an “eye-catching” mural created by a popular Miami-based street artist known for his vast fields of sleepy-looking peepers. WVUM has about 100 student members with majors ranging from media management to neuroscience. And their dedication does not end after graduation. Many alumni still tune in to the station, donate every year during Radiothon, and come back to campus during Alumni Weekend and Homecoming to host shows with current student DJs. “We’re an eclectic group of people, but we can all bond over this love for WVUM and for music,” Vélez says.      Summer 2018 MIAMI 29

Alumni Digest

Alumni Digest


Staying Connected with the U Across the Globe The new UM Alumni App enhances engagement and provides a suite of digital tools

Whether you live in Miami or not, or you’re busy globetrotting to international locales, the UM Alumni Association has launched a new mobile app to keep you better connected to

your alma mater. The app is a powerful, interactive mobile environment that provides new opportunities for University of Miami alumni to engage and stay informed

about topics relevant to the ’Canes family. You’ll find news about the U, ways to connect with friends from your college days, and tools that can benefit your career, provide mentorship opportunities, and help you shop for Hurricanes gear. This enhanced connectivity brings ’Cane Communities, affinity groups, campus partners, parents, and students together on a central, digital platform. Alumni have access to a customized, searchable directory, a calendar of events, an interactive ’Cane Biz map of alumni-owned businesses, and a digital alumni card. The digital tool is a must for all ’Canes and is available for download on Apple and Android devices. UM alumni can log in securely to the app with their unique University of Miami C number. Email the University of Miami Alumni Association at umalumniapp@ for more information.

Alumni Stars Shine New acclaim for famed ’Canes Multi-Grammy- and Tony-winning composer and lyricist Jerry Herman, A.B. ’53, has achieved yet another milestone in his boffo Broadway career. The 2017 Tony-winning revival of Hello, Dolly! starring Bette Midler grossed more than $73.5 million in its eight-month run, repeatedly breaking house records at the Shubert Theatre. The production was nominated for 30 MIAMI   Summer 2018

ten Tony Awards and won four, including best musical revival. Bernadette Peters is now starring as Dolly. With a theatrical career spanning 60 years and hits ranging from Mame to La Cage aux Folles, Herman received the Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre in 2009. In 2010 Herman was honored at the annual Kennedy Center

Honors Ceremony, which spotlights the careers of artists whose talent and ingenuity have enriched our nation’s cultural life. Gloria Estefan, A.B. ’78, honorary D.M.A. ’93, and seven-time Grammywinner, was among the artists honored at the 40th Kennedy Center ceremony on December 3, 2017. On Your Feet!, the musical created by Estefan and her husband, Emilio, honorary D.M.A. ’01, enjoyed a successful Broadway run and is now on an international tour. Nominated for a 2016 Tony Award in the best choreography category, the show won Outer Critics and Theater World Awards.

The X Factor The art of alumnus Xavier Cortada illuminates science and inspires action With its drug wars, riots, and mass infusions of Cuban refugees, the 1980s Miami in which Xavier Cortada came of age was the ideal breeding ground for a globally renowned artist whose work embodies his longstanding advocacy on behalf of social justice and environmental protection. “I grew up in an urban landscape surrounded by societal ills and, along the way, found institutions that helped address those ills,” says Cortada, A.B. ’86, M.P.A. ’91, J.D. ’91. “The one that has my eternal gratitude is the University of Miami.” A New York-born Cuban-American, Cortada was a student at Miami Senior High when he won a Silver Knight Award for service to the community that ranged from running blood drives to manning Goodwill trucks. He then spent ten years earning three degrees—and engaging in a whirlwind of extracurricular activities—at UM. As an undergraduate student, Cortada conducted cardiology research, served as a student representative on the University’s Board of Trustees, was vice president of the Biology Club, and was tapped into Iron Arrow and other honor societies. He also danced his way to second place in a Mr. UM contest clad in a toga and sombrero. As a graduate student in public affairs and law, Cortada served as national vice chair of the American Bar Association and chair of Miami’s Youth Task Force. He also ran for the Florida House of Representatives. Juan Carlos Espinosa, a volunteer for the victor, Fran Bohnsack, would years later become Cortada’s husband.

ARTISTIC DESTINY Cortada left his law school clerkship at a prestigious Miami firm to help build and lead an adolescent drug rehab

face the greatest challenge of our time.”


center, Regis House. After passing the bar, he was tapped by UM clinical psychologist José Szapocznik to become a research assistant professor and director of the Juvenile Violence and Delinquency Prevention Programs. The role led to speaking and teaching engagements around the world—and an existential awakening. “I was 30 years old, standing near the top of Mount Kilimanjaro, asking myself, ‘Am I an artist, an academic, or an attorney?’” Cortada recalls. A few months later, he had answered the question in colorful fashion by completing his first commission, “Hand in Hand,” a vibrant mural urging the multicultural community of Leadville, Colorado, to embrace its diversity. Others followed—championing peace in Cyprus and Northern Ireland, child welfare in South America, juvenile justice in Miami-Dade County, action against AIDS in Geneva and South Africa, and minority homeownership at the White House. Cortada describes his work as “participatory art,” designed to pique curiosity and inspire action. “Most of what I do,” he says, “is slow activism, building a cadre of citizens who are more science literate and more loving and supportive with one another as we

That challenge, says Cortada, is sea level rise. If current trends continue, he notes, “it’s inevitable that every piece I created for this town will be under water.” But he is committed to reversing those trends through both action and art. In his Reclamation Project, for example, thousands of mangrove seedlings were collected, then nurtured in museums, shops, and other public spaces—spawning eight new acres of mangroves in Biscayne Bay. While Cortada’s works exploring environmental degradation, endangered species, and the passage of time have appeared on every continent, as well as the North Pole, he never really left the U. He was an adjunct professor in pediatrics, psychiatry, and biology for many years, and has worked with UM students on participatory art projects. An artist in residence at Florida International University since 2011, he was appointed this year to the UM Alumni Association Board of Directors. Cortada is currently working with the Alumni Association’s First Black Graduates Project to help plan a tribute wall on campus to honor black history and inclusion at the University (see “Envisioning a Tribute to Black Alumni,” page 6). He has donated dozens of works to the University, including “Flight of the Ibis,” a striking digital tapestry in the Shalala Student Center. Much as mangroves foster new life, Cortada considers his career to be rooted in his experiences as a UM student leader. “The mangrove called the University of Miami,” he says, “allowed this ibis to grow and take flight.”      Summer 2018  MIAMI 31

Alumni Digest

Family Ties Nine accomplished young people from one extended family have embraced UM It all started with Aunt Monica. The Madrid physician would bring her nieces and nephews with her on vacations to South Florida, including tours of the University of Miami. “We never knew why or when she fell in love with UM, just that she was so fond of it,” Alessia Juan Martinuzzi, one of those nieces, recalls. “Every summer we’d spend a good portion of our time walking around and learning about the campus, and we were Left to right, triplets Carlos, Andres, and Mikel Juan Panek blown away by it.” The children thought Monica was family—all from Spain—matriculate at joking when, during one of those South and/or graduate from the U. Florida sojourns, she suggested that Fabiana, B.S. ’13, is now a medithey all attend the University of Miami. cal student at Florida International Then Fabiana, the oldest, applied to University’s Herbert Wertheim College and was accepted by the University, of Medicine. Alessia, B.S.E.E. ’15, works launching a family tradition that has for 300 Engineering Group. Sister Lara seen nine youthful members of the Juan and a cousin, Manuel, also have UM

Banding Together Band of the Hour to celebrate 85th reunion It may be called the UM Band of the Hour, but its legacy of rousing music and ’Canes spirit spans decades. The UM Band of the Hour Alumni Reunion, held as part of this fall’s Alumni Weekend, Nov. 1-3, 2018, will celebrate the band’s 85th year. Events include an alumni dinner, participation with the current Frost Band of the Hour on and off the field at the UM versus Duke game, a parade, and the Hall of Fame get-together. A special event will honor the 40th reunion of the 1979 32 MIAMI   Summer 2018

Mirage Bowl, which pitted the U against Notre Dame in Tokyo, Japan. Alumni band members are welcome to make plans to attend the festivities. For additional information, contact Rick Veingrad, president of the Band of the Hour Association of Alumni and Friends, at 954-472-4010 or

diplomas hanging on their walls. Five Juan family members are current UM students: Alessia’s brother, Diego, and four cousins— Manuela and triplets Andres, Carlos, and Mikel Juan Panek. Andres is an economics major, Carlos is a licensed pilot majoring in aerospace engineering, and Mikel is studying industrial engineering and economics. They do just about everything together, from studying and kiteboarding, and they have also done volunteer work in Central America and the Caribbean through the Butler Center for Service and Leadership. On pace to graduate in May 2019, the three young men look forward to walking together at Commencement—and to seeing future Juan family members follow in their footsteps.

Class Notes 1950s


Citizen ’Cane

was a member of the Phi Sigma Delta fraternity, which later merged with Zeta Beta Tau. “When the fraternities had musical competitions, ZBT always won,” he recalls. “Why? Jerry Herman was a member.” Epstein earned his J.D. from the University of Southern California in 1961. Though he is retired from the full-time practice of law, he retains his license to practice. He is enjoying life in Southern California and involved in various organizations. Stanley Mesh, A.B. ’53, after practicing as a CPA in Florida, has retired and moved to Atlanta, Georgia, to be near family. Simon Zayon, B.B.A. ’52, a World War II veteran and proud American, is the youngest and sole survivor of four first-generation American-born brothers raised in Philadelphia, all of whom served in the United States Armed Service during WWII. The Zayon family was recently entered into the Congressional Record in Philadelphia for its three-generation, 100-year wartime service in the U.S. Bernard Kulchin, A.B. ’54, B.Ed. ’55, was recognized with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the San Diego Society of Human Resources Management and now serves on the Board of Trustees of the San Diego Public Library Foundation. He is a director of San Diego Habitat for Humanity and the Youth Symphony. Donald Gunn, B.B.A. ’58, has lived in Arizona since retiring from Pulitzer newspapers in 1992 as vice president and general manager. “I play golf and bridge and have a beer now and then,” says Gunn, who recently turned 86.

’65, executive producer of Gimme Shelter, which featured the Rolling Stones, will produce The Beautiful People, a short UM “Freedom Film” starring Alan Frankel. The film centers on the prejudices between a hippie and a wealthy boy. Richard Milstein, A.B. ’68, J.D. ’73, received a Legal Luminary award from the Dade County Bar Association in the Probate and Estate Planning category. Milstein concentrates on family law, including high-conflict and complex trust, probate, and guardianship matters. A Florida Bar elder law expert, certified mediator, and champion of human rights and equality, Milstein has devoted years of practice to protecting the civil rights of individuals and all aspects of life for the elderly, children, alternative families, and same-sex couples. Edward Tassinari, M.A. ’69, Ph.D. ’82, has been promoted to professor of history at SUNY (State University of New York) Maritime College.

Aligned for Success

Stanley O. Epstein, B.B.A. ’51,

Ronald “Ronnie” Schneider, B.B.A.


Robert Grand, B.S. ’70, an optometric physician, recently published his debut children’s picture book, The Cosmic Carrot: A Journey to Wellness, Clear Vision and Nutrition. The illustrated book, available on Amazon, chronicles a boy’s journey to good nutrition and the dedicated eye doctor who brings his world into clear focus. Glenda H. Kaplan, B.Ed. ’71, is retired from pet food marketing and “breeding and showing Scotties.” She read about UPup in Miami magazine and was inspired to become a financial donor. “I even got a few of my UM

It didn’t take Severin Romanov, B.B.A. ’10, long to decide what to do with his degree in finance and business management after graduation. His father, world-renowned Russian sports scientist and Olympic coach Nicholas Romanov, had recently developed the Pose Method, a running technique based on research studies that focused on reducing the impact of running on knees. Zeroing in on the increased popularity of running in China, where participation in marathons has exploded in recent years, Severin Romanov saw a market opportunity: educate and train Chinese coaches in the Pose Method way. There are now thousands of Pose Methodcertified technique specialists worldwide, including—thanks to its founder’s enterprising son—China. While still in high school, Romanov was dubbed by his classmates “Most Likely to Run a Company,” so enrolling at Miami Business School was a natural step. (His older sister is also an alumna.) As a sophomore at the U, he started a tech company in Silicon Valley and took 500-level classes that were beyond his capabilities but presented an irresistible challenge. While his father laid the scientific foundation for the Pose Method, Severin Romanov now manages all of the endeavor’s business aspects, including operations and marketing. It’s the perfect fit for his own quick-off-the-starting-blocks style. With the growing popularity of running as a fitness routine, the high-energy alumnus is confident his business has legs. Though the activity of running seems natural, he points out, “It has a high rate of injury because everyone thinks they know how to do it.” classmates to donate!” she says. Diane Daughetee Huff, B.Ed. ’72, is retired from teaching high school health and physical education. She teaches a free yoga class every week at her church. Steven A. Sutnick, A.B. ’72, recently retired after 32 years as a dentist, 34 years as a commercial pilot and flight instructor, and five years as a Florida Highway Patrol auxiliary trooper. Roy Berger, A.B. ’74, president

of MedjetAssist, has written Big League Dream. He describes the book as “like sitting with the players and hearing stories from the talented few who earned the shot to play while the rest of us could only watch from the stands.” The book can be found on Amazon. James Giermanski, Ph.D. ’75, retired from the U.S. Air Force Office of Special Investigations and the FBI, is an expert on security operations in the global      Summer 2018  MIAMI 33

Class Notes supply chain. A frequent commentator on container security and weapons defense, he taught at Texas A&M University and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and is a visiting scholar at the Air Force Doctrine Development and Education Center. Charles Messing, M.S. ’75, Ph.D. ’79, participated in a three-week expedition as science co-lead aboard the NOAA research ship Okeanos Explorer, using the Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) Deep Discoverer to explore deep-sea environments of the Gulf of Mexico. Laurie Anton, B.M. ’79, was admitted to the Tennessee Bar in Nashville and sworn in to the U.S. Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee. Her Nashville-based practice focuses on entertainment law and intellectual property law.

Jacqueline Lee, A.B. ’79, is worship leader, vocalist, and pianist for Holy Cross Lutheran Church in South Daytona, Florida. In addition, she was recently

elected to the office of chaplain. Alan Matarasso, M.D. ’79, is clinical professor of surgery at Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell. He is president-elect of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.


C.T. Gregoire, B.Ed. ’80, retired from a distinguished career in the U.S. Marine Corps as a veteran of Desert Shield/Desert Storm, Iraqi Freedom, and the Afghanistan War. During his last deployment, he served under Secretary of Defense General James Mattis in a NATO billet and within a counterinsurgency group under General David Petraeus. Gregoire is also retired from his position as a police sergeant at the Miami Police Department. Eshan Kibria, M.B.A. ’80, M.S.C.E. ’80, is a board-certified clinician, author, researcher, and educator in neurology in Naples. He conducts a free clinic in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, and maintains active

34 MIAMI   Summer 2018

medical and professional engineer licenses in Florida. Muriel Efron, J.D. ’81, retired in 1992 from her position as law librarian at Greenberg Traurig. She has since stayed active in legal library circles, consulting in locales ranging from Australia to Bermuda and helping to set up the law library at the University of Haifa in Israel. She also worked part time for the West Palm Beach office of Greenberg Traurig and “received a W2 form at age 89.” Now 92, she lives in Israel and enjoys keeping up with news from the U. David Diamond, A.B. ’82, M.B.A. ’84, president of the Northern Trust Company of Delaware, was elected a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel, a Delaware limited-purpose trust company. Previously, Diamond was an attorney with Gordon, Fournaris & Mammerella, where he focused on distinctive aspects of Delaware trust law. Mark Altschul, J.D. ’84, was elected president of Gesher Shalom Synagogue of Fort Lee, New Jersey. Guillermo de Aranzabal Agudo, M.B.A. ’84, a vice president of the University of Miami Alumni Association, is a vintner whose 2008 Viña Ardanza was selected as a 2017 editor’s pick by Food and Wine magazine. Maria Alonso, B.S.I.E. ’86, is the new president and CEO of United Way of Miami-Dade. Previously she served as senior vice president and marketing manager with Bank of America. Jacqueline Del Rosario, A.B. ’86, is the author of Marriage Blueprint. Available on Amazon, the book is suitable for married couples who wish to improve their relationships as well as for singles who are seeking suitable mates. Kimberly Kolbeck, J.D. ’86, who has her own law practice, moderated the webcast “Handling Your Sports Client’s Legal Needs” with attorney Alan Fertel, sponsored

by the Florida Bar Entertainment, Arts and Sports Law Section. She also co-moderated a panel about endorsement and sponsorship deals during the American Bar Association’s 29th Annual North American Law Summit, held in November 2017 in Montego Bay, Jamaica. Laird A. Lile, LL.M. ’87, a boardcertified wills, trusts, and estates attorney in Naples, has been elected to a seventh consecutive two-year term on the Board of Governors for The Florida Bar, representing the 20th Judicial Circuit. Lile recently was named chairman of the Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Political Action Committee and has been appointed to the Florida Bar’s Strategic Planning Priority Subgroup. He was recently named for the 23rd consecutive year among the Best Lawyers in America 2018. Tom Graybill, B.S. ’88, has produced a documentary about the plot to steal Elvis Presley’s body with fellow alumnus Dick Arlett, B.S. ’60, a longtime television producer still working in the industry. The two are working on a feature film about the story with a third UM alumnus, Arthur Bernstein, A.B. ’00, producer of Walt Before Mickey, American Brawler, and Swing State, among other credits. “The Elvis Presley grave-robbing plot is incredible,” Graybill says, “and the story of how three ’Canes from different generations got connected is pretty interesting, too.” David Ryon, M.D. ’88, has been elected president of medical staff at Deaconess Hospital in Evansville, Indiana. A director of Deaconess Health, he is medical director for patient safety at Deaconess, where he practices pulmonary and critical care medicine. Johnny C. Taylor Jr., B.S.C. ’89, who served as CEO of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, which has helped more than 300,000 African-American students go to


James Peet, A.B. ’90, is the author of Surveyor. Available on Amazon, the novel tells the story of a young man who signs up to explore parallel Earths—then gets caught in a shadowy organization’s attempt to destroy the portals that make such journeys possible. Alan Knitowski, B.S.I.E. ’91, is founder and CEO of the enterprise mobile software company Phunware, which recently announced a new partnership with worldwide technology leader Cisco Meraki. Through the initiative, businesses can offer high-capacity, high-speed cloud-managed wireless as well as rich mobile experiences for end customers. Justin Elegant, A.B. ’93, J.D.’96, has joined the dispute resolution team of Florida law firm Berger Singerman, bringing more than two decades of legal expertise and philanthropic involvement to his new role. He devotes his practice to complex civil trial and appellate litigation, including multifaceted commercial, real estate, and insurance-related disputes. Joseph Sendra, B.S.I.E. ’93, M.B.A. ’97, is worldwide vice president for manufacturing and engineering technology at Johnson & Johnson. He is one of three alumni who helped to make the College of Engineering’s new 3D Printing Collaborative Laboratory a reality.

Maribel Caridad Perez Wadsworth, B.S.C. ’93, has been named president of USA Today Network, where she previously served as chief transformation officer. Wadsworth’s responsibilities include strategy and operations for the company’s

Citizen ’Cane Making Imaginative Leaps into Reality For Rony Abovitz, B.S.M.E. ’94, M.S.B.E. ’96, technology is a humanistic art fueled by imagination. His father was an Air Force flight engineer, entrepreneur, and inventor; his mother an accomplished painter and educator. All of those impulses found a home in Abovitz. “They were, and still are, one and the same for me,” he says. This da Vinci-like approach to creativity allowed Abovitz to achieve extraordinary success as a pioneer of surgeon-assisted robotics, then pivot to the founding of Magic Leap, a novel computing platform that seeks to harness the potential of “mixed reality” in applications ranging from entertainment to education. As a middle schooler, Abovitz moved with his family from Ohio to South Florida, where he discovered an enticing world of outdoor adventures: snorkeling, Rony Abovitz, above, is pioneering a swimming with dolphins, flying small planes. Enrolling virtual reality technology, below, with the in the UM College of Engineering, Abovitz dreamed potential to transform entertainment, of designing jets, developing solar-powered race cars, education, and more. and becoming an astronaut, an animator, and a ’Canes quarterback (not necessarily in that order). Instead, he became the cartoonist for The Miami Hurricane, a DJ at WVUM, and a javelin thrower on the varsity track and field team—“an unexpectedly cool dream come true.” Abovitz then turned his focus toward the beneficial potential of the technology-human interface, earning a master’s degree in biomedical engineering and launching the entrepreneurial endeavors that would evolve into MAKO Surgical, manufacturers of the first FDA-cleared robotic surgical system. Nothing left the MAKO shop without passing the ultimate quality check, Abovitz’s “Mom Rule”: “Would you use this on your mom?” MAKO Surgical went public in 2008 and was acquired in 2013 by Stryker Corp. For the next chapter of his already remarkable life, Abovitz—twice named a Technology Pioneer by the World Economic Forum—began pursuing a seamless blend of the digital and physical worlds, inspired in part by vivid memories of his exciting experiences as a new Floridian. “What if,” he recalls wondering, “computing could spill outside the computer?” Such musings ultimately spawned Magic Leap. The company’s recently unveiled first product, Magic Leap One, combines a headset, pocketsized computer, and state-of-theart control technology to meld the real and virtual worlds. The company, which is partnering with the NBA and Turner to create an interactive sports viewing platform, invites developers and creators to share their own ideas for content and applications. Speaking at the U’s December 2017 graduate-degree commencement ceremony, Abovitz couched his thoughts in a fanciful yet heartfelt letter to the future. It was a future that had migrated to sustainable energy; ended wars and colonized Mars; mastered the use of artificial intelligence to help people, not replace them; and made powerful commitments to gender rights and equality for all. As to how to turn that utopian vision into reality, “We can make this world better by filling it with our creative imagination and sharing it,” he told the newly minted graduates. “You don’t need all the answers. You’ll find everything you need along the way. “Go save the world. It’s why you were born.”      Summer 2018  MIAMI 35


college, joined Jeanne Allen for an interview published in The Daily Signal. Taylor is now president and CEO of the Society for Human Resource Management.

Class Notes award-winning portfolio of media brands, local news, and niche content brands, such as its For The Win sports site and the Grateful Ventures lifestyle sites. Wadsworth serves also as associate publisher of USA Today. She was recently selected to serve on the National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Brian Bieber, J.D. ’94, a partner at GrayRobinson, P.A., in Miami, Florida, was elected to the Board of Governors for the American Board of Criminal Defense Lawyers. Bieber is a member of the Dade County Bar Association and has been admitted to the Florida Bar, The New York Bar, and the District of Columbia Bar. He has successfully challenged, by way of appeal, the ability of Florida law enforcement personnel to collect DNA samples from convicted felons who are no longer being supervised by the state. Corey B. Collins, J.D. ’95, recently published his first novel, The Thanks You Get. Collins describes the South Florida-based mystery as “an exploration of human behavior and the driving force behind people’s actions.” Collins has practiced law in South Florida since receiving his UM law degree. He chairs the board of directors of the James B. Collins Memorial Fund and serves on the board of directors of the St. John Community Development Corporation. He has completed four marathons and 11 half marathons. Alexis Gonzalez, B.B.A. ’95, and J.D. ’99, managing shareholder of AG LAW, was appointed to serve on Miami-Dade County’s Small Business Enterprise Advisory Board. Afi Johnson-Parris, B.B.A. ’95, an expert in presentation of child custody, equitable distribution, and divorce cases in court, was invited to teach at the Family Law Trial Advocacy Institute in Boulder, Colorado.

Johnson was included by U.S. News & World Report among its 2018 Best Lawyers in America. While attending the University of Miami, she was on a ROTC scholarship and later served as an officer in the Air Force. Roy Weinfeld, J.D. ’95, a lease litigation attorney, presented a two-part introduction to commercial eviction law to the Miami Association of Realtors, with one session held in Miami Springs and the other in Fort Lauderdale. Brian Lawlor, M.B.A. ’96, is now president of E.W. Scripps Company. In addition to the company’s 33 television stations and 34 radio stations, Lawlor is responsible for the stations’ local digital operations and the four Katz multicast networks. James Taintor, B.S. ’96, M.B.A. ’99, who has a diverse background in professional leadership, has published his first book, Building

36 MIAMI   Summer 2018

Authentic Confidence in Children. The book sheds light on the U.S. educational system’s deficiency in instilling the self-belief, fearlessness, perseverance, and drive that are essential to young people’s growth and success. Durée Mellion Ross, B.A. ’97, is president and founder of Fort Lauderdale-based full-service public relations, marketing, and special events firm Durée & Company, Inc., winner of a national 2017 Bulldog Stars of PR Awards from Bulldog Reporter. The firm won silver in the Small Agency (fewer than 50 employees) category. Ross, who graduated with a double major in broadcast journalism and sociology, has been a guest lecturer for several classes in the School of Communication. Paula Phillips, J.D. ’97, and Jane Muir, J.D. ’09, are partners in the women-owned business, transactional, trial, and appel-

late law firm Phillips & Muir, PA, in Miami, Florida. Phillips was the student speaker at the 1997 commencement ceremony during which she received her law degree, cum laude. The two met when Phillips coached Muir in a negotiation competition; Muir’s team was the first to go to the ABA National Negotiation Competition since Phillips’s team represented the U. Muir’s father, William T. “Toby” Muir, and her brother, William D. “Douglas” Muir, also earned law degrees at the University. Dolly Hernandez, B.B.A. ’98, J.D. ’01, has joined the law firm of Richard Greer, P.A., as counsel with a focus on complex marital and family law cases. She has also been admitted to practice law in Florida state courts and in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida. Darren Haimer, B.B.A. ’99 and

M.B.A. ’04, has been named vice president of advertising and general manager at the Bradenton Herald. Haimer began his career in the media industry during his undergraduate years, selling advertising for the Miami Hurricane newspaper. Lawrence Jonas, B.Sc. ’99, is a line producer at DreamWorks Animation Television. He received two Daytime Emmy Nominations for his Netflix series Trollhunters and DreamWorks Dragons: Race to the Edge.


Eddie Dabdoub, A.B. ’00, J.D. ’07, is a successful disability insurance lawyer practicing in Coral Gables, Florida, who specializes in cases he describes as “hard-fought and complex.” The firm recently won a case before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit that Dabdoub describes as a “victory not just for women but for anyone who has had a pre-existing condition leading to another disabling condition.” Steven Gonzalez, A.B. ’00, a partner at Weinberg Wheeler Hudgins Gunn & Dial, has been listed in Best Lawyers in America 2018. Jeanette Rodriguez, B.F.A. ’00, was promoted to art director of Barnes & Noble’s Digital Experience Team in 2017. Daniel Washo, M.M. ’00, is the president of KDW Consulting, providing sales and marketing expertise for technology, consumer electronics, and retail channel. He is the author of The Heart of Success, a self-improvement book combining personal anecdotes and research. He is also the producer of the songs “For You” and “Heart of Gold.” Tamara Beliard Rodriguez, B.B.A. ’01, a Haitian-born author, mother, and breast cancer survivor, recently wrote a children’s book on cancer, Hair to the Queen. The book encourages adults to discuss cancer with children in a simple,

tender way through the story of 7-year-old Corazon, who plans a surprise for her mother as she courageously battles cancer. Mark Black, J.D. ’01, M.A. ’02, was promoted to brigadier general in the U.S. Army Reserve, where he is currently serving as deputy commanding general of the 108th Training Command. In civilian life, he served as a prosecutor at the county and state level. Richard Montes de Oca, J.D. ’01, a managing partner at MDO Partners, closed on a transaction that created the South Beach restaurant Stubborn Seed. It is the first of two new restaurants that formalize the partnership between Grove Bay Hospitality Group and Top Chef Season 13 winner Jeremy Ford. Lisa Brunette, M.F.A. ’02, recently launched her latest game, Sender Unknown: The Woods, a collaboration with Daily Magic Productions. Brunette, a journalist and fiction author, has been credited as writer/ designer on hundreds of games. She is currently visiting professor of games and game design at Webster University. Ramon Vega-Dorticos, B.B.A. ’02, LL.M. ’10, has been nominated by the governor of Puerto Rico and confirmed to the board of directors of the Instituto de Cultura de Puerto Rico. Gil Acevedo, LL.M. ’04, a shareholder at Fowler White Burnett, was selected by his peers for inclusion in the 2018 Best Lawyers in America, in the area of real estate law. Acevedo represents clients from various industries in connection with commercial and residential real estate matters. He is a director of the Greater Miami Aviation Association and a member of the Florida Bar’s Real Property Probate and Trust Law Section. Monique Hays, J.D. ’04, has joined Goldstein & McClintock, LLP, to lead the firm’s expansion. Her focus is on complex

Citizen ’Cane Multicultural Maven Gulnar Vaswani, B.B.A. ’91, M.B.A. ’93, specializes in inclusivity—that elusive but essential value that helps today’s multicultural business world hum. Vaswani travels throughout Asia and the United States consulting with clients that range from Fortune 500 companies to non-governmental organizations and academic institutions. Within these varied settings, she says, “I help leaders understand and embrace cross-cultural dynamics and diversity.” Though she had previously built a successful career in finance, “Being good at something doesn’t mean that is your purpose,” Vaswani says. “I wanted to do something that was important to me and that could create an impact.” So she made a leap of faith into her new career about a decade ago. The move turned out to be perfectly timed to capitalize on a growing corporate emphasis on workplace inclusivity. Today Vaswani performs what she calls “gentle audits” that spur her clients to deeply examine their corporate culture. The process, she says, “forces leadership and management to ask, ‘Are we fully and truly inclusive? Are we indicative of the hemispheric values that we preach?’” In Asia, Vaswani’s clients are typically regionally based firms hiring U.S. or European employees into their home markets. She also supports multinational corporations in their development of Asian talent. Her efforts are designed to optimize the communication skills and cultural sensitivities of both employees and managers. “I help bridge the East and West,” Vaswani says. “My work helps to demystify the differences in cultures so that everyone can work as cohesively as possible.” Vaswani also advises, coaches, trains, and speaks at diversity conferences and serves as a director of the UM Alumni Association. She credits her parents—economic immigrants from Bombay (modern-day Mumbai) for their powerful commitment to education as “a way to equalize the playing field. “At the University of Miami, I quickly learned that inclusion, by definition, is an environment where anybody, regardless of race or religion, can succeed if they have the ability to do so. “The underlying intention of my work,” Vaswani says, “is to connect people and build on similarities rather than focus on differences.”      Summer 2018  MIAMI 37

Class Notes aspects of business transactions, commercial litigation, and corporate restructuring. Hays has extensive experience advising fiduciaries, corporate and nonprofit boards, entrepreneurs, and companies, with a practice in director, officer, and member fiduciary liability claims litigation. An active philanthropist, she has been recognized by the United Way of Miami-Dade as one of its Young Leaders. Adam Levin, B.M. ’04, has been named the managing attorney for the Northeast Georgia Regional Capital Defender, where he defends trial level capital cases.

Michael Nolasco, B.F.A.’04, and Laura Nolasco, B.B.A. ’04, opened an advertising and design agency called Beach Lion Studios, specializing in advertising campaigns and branding; Mike is the creative director, and Laura is the managing director. Raju Parakkal, M.A. ’04, received the President’s Award for Excel-

lence at Philadelphia University “In Recognition of Extraordinary Scholarship and Academic Accomplishment” in April 2017. Last fall he was awarded tenure and promoted to associate of International Relations at PhilaU. Emily Caldarelli, B.S.Ed. ’05, is the newest recipient of the prestigious Milken Educator Award. Her honor includes a $25,000 prize, public recognition, professional development opportunities, and membership in the National Milken Educator Network, a group of more than 2,700 principals, teachers, and specialists dedicated to strengthening education. Daniel Pedreira, B.A.I.S. ’06, will begin serving as president of Cuban Heritage, a nonprofit organization that works to preserve Cuban culture and history, in January 2018. Pedreira is the youngest and first U.S.-born president elected in the organization’s 23-year history. Jessica Colley Clarke, A.B. ’07, is a

New York-based freelance writer whose work has appeared in publications including The New York Times, Condé Nast Traveler, and AFAR magazine. David Gottesmann, J.D. ’07, has launched a crowdfund campaign for a new app called Perchance. Created to give users a second chance when they had a missed connection, Gottesman says, “It turns the one that got away into THE ONE.” More information about the app is at Elise Martos, B.B.A. ’07, and Christian Martos, have worked together in the architecture, engineering, and construction industry for ten years. Elise’s father and two siblings are UM alumni, as are two of Christian’s brothers and both of their wives. “The family connection to and legacy with the University is very strong,” says Elise Martos. Elsa Bolt, B.S.C. ’08 has been promoted to executive news

producer at WPLG Local 10 News in South Florida. Nicholas Nanovic, LL.M.T. ’08, a member of the law firm Norris McLaughlin & Marcus, P.A., presented “Legacy Platz” with David Ellowich, CFP of Lincoln Financial Advisors Corporation. The presentation addressed risks that threaten a secure retirement, qualified accounts, and estate planning. Lauren Ordway, A.B. ’08, M.A. ’09, has been named executive director of Dream in Green, a Miami-based nonprofit organization devoted to empowering individuals to respond to climate change and other environmental challenges. Previously she worked in environmental stewardship at Royal Caribbean Cruises.

Maria Ramos-Person, M.B.A. ’08, was named the 2017 Woman of the Year by the Suncoast Chapter of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS). In her role as physician liaison at

Save the Date • November 1-3, 2018 Join fellow Hurricanes for a weekend full of exciting events and programs—from class and affinity reunions to school and college events, lifelong learning opportunities, student Homecoming traditions, the Homecoming football game vs. the Duke Blue Devils, and much more!

For more information, contact 1-866-UMALUMS (862-5867), 305-284-2872, or Follow us on social media


38 MIAMI   Summer 2018

Florida Cancer Specialist, she raised more than $108,000 for the LLS.


Karen Barroeta, M.B.A. ’10, previously general manager of Telemundo International, has been named SVP/Marketing and Creative for Telemundo Networks. Based in Miami, she is part of the network’s core content team, leading strategic development and execution of all consumer marketing initiatives across platforms, including media buying and experiential marketing. Felix Mesa, B.B.A. ’10, M.B.A. ’12, is the new chief operating officer at Bernkopf Goodman LLP. With more than 18 years of law firm experience, Mesa was for the past seven years COO of Kirwan Spellacy & Danner, a multi-office firm with 90 employees. During his tour of duty as a soldier in the United States Army, Mesa was stationed in the U.S. and Europe and deployed during Operation Desert Storm. Laura Mannering, D.P.T. ’10, has achieved two professional certifications in orthopedics and opened her own practice in Broward County. Michael Cardozo, A.B. ’11, is founder and owner of a medical cannabis company in Maryland that produces and distributes wholesale cannabis products for over 100 dispensaries, including its own retail store. Cardozo began the firm to help reduce opioid overdose fatalities by expanding availability of cannabis as a safer alternative. He dedicates this note to the memory of his brother Jon, a true ’Cane, loyal friend, and amazing person. Stanley Linder, B.S.Ed. ’11, chief resident of the Internal Medicine Residency Program at Broward Health Medical Center, successfully matched into

the Nephrology/Critical Care Medicine Fellowship Program at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, Michigan. Belinda Merkelis, B.S.M.A.S. ’11, an AmeriCorps volunteer member at the Sea Turtle Center, participated in the Earth Expeditions global field course in India. She studied the ecological, cultural and spiritual landscapes of the Western Ghats, where the fates of people, wildlife, and deities meet in sacred groves and forest temples in India. Marike Paulsson, LL.M. ’11, director of the International Arbitration Institute and a lecturer at the University of Miami School of Law, was recognized in Washington, D.C., for her new book, The 1958 New York Convention in Action. The book traces the worldwide application of the convention since its creation. Alexander Nabhan, B.B.A. ’11, a wealth management advisor at Merrill Lynch in Boston, was named to the first-ever Forbes list of “America’s Top NextGeneration Wealth Advisors,” which uses a variety of criteria to identify the best forward thinkers in the advisory business. At Merrill Lynch since 2011, Nabhan helps individuals and families manage wealth and achieve their financial goals. Heath Saunders, B.M. ’11, is playing Jesus in the Chicago Lyric Opera production of Jesus Christ Superstar. He was in the original Broadway cast of Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812 and recently played Feste in Twelfth Night at the Shakespeare Theatre Company in Washington, D.C. Samantha Bapty, B.S. ’12, and Matthew Shaffery, B.B.A. ’12, M.A.C.C. ’13, were married in October 2017 in Warrenton, Virginia. Several other ’Canes alumni attended the ceremony. Angie C. Villanueva, A.B. ’12, M.B.A. ’18, was inducted into

Citizen ’Cane Reaching Out, Lifting Up Recognized by Teach For America during Black History Month this year as one of 13 Black Leaders Who are Shaping the Future of their Communities, Courtney CrossJohnson, A.B. ’11, sees her years at the U as the catalyst for her service-oriented career. “The U bred me into a leader,” she says. “There were so many high-caliber individuals around me that I had to step my game up.” Cross-Johnson clearly rose to the challenge, serving as president of both United Black Students and the National PanHellenic Council during her senior year. She was also a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, the Yellow Rose Society, Organization for Jamaican Unity, and Order of Omega. After graduation, Cross-Johnson worked for six years as a teacher in the public school system, honing her understanding of how students learn and, in particular, how to inspire girls and young women. “Students watch the behaviors of the adults around them,” she says, “and I see it as my duty to ensure that we are rearing up the finest young lady bosses around.” Diversity is a core value at Teach For America, which unites a diverse coalition of change-makers around the goal of educational equity. Just as she did at the U, Cross-Johnson, who serves as manager of the organization’s alumni group, seeks to drive positive change in multiple ways. A member of the Dallas-Fort Worth Urban League Young Professionals, Cross-Johnson is active in the HERitage Giving Fund, which links black women philanthropists to North Texas nonprofits that serve women and girls. She also volunteers with Black Girls Code-Dallas, an organization that encourages girls to enter STEM fields. Though her plate is perpetually full to overflowing, “It hardly feels like work,” Cross-Johnson says. “There are so many ways to serve others and to better the community. “When you find your purpose, you will be able to live out your passion.” the Women’s Chamber of Commerce as the treasurer and sponsorship chair. Trent Saunders, B.M. ’12, is in the ensemble and understudies Aladdin in the original Broadway cast of Disney’s Aladdin, now entering its fourth year. Alanna Saunders, B.F.A. ’14, is in the original Broadway cast of Harry Potter and the Cursed

Child and appeared in NBC’s Peter Pan Live as Tiger Lily. Thomas Treece, LL.M. ’17, joined Laird A. Lile, PLLC, as resident of law. A member of the Florida Bar and its Young Lawyers Division, he also serves as co-leader of the Education Committee for the Expanded Media of the Tax Section.

Email Class Notes to alumni@      Summer 2018  MIAMI 39

Class Notes

In Memoriam* Remembering Three Community Pillars The University of Miami and the South Florida community lost three of their most passionate champions this spring. Bernyce “Bunny” Shinensky Adler, who served as a trustee of the University of Miami for 34 years, died on March 22, at the age of 93. Elected as a trustee in 1984, Adler became trustee emeritus in 1995. Her tenure on the board included service on the Academic Affairs Committee and the Finance and Audit Committee, and she generously supported various programs throughout the University, including athletics and the Miller School of Medicine. Born in Brooklyn, New York, Adler was a lifetime board member of the Greater Miami Jewish Federation, and a member of the Woman’s Board of the Jewish Federations of North America and of the Dade County Public Health Trust. She is survived by three children, seven grandchildren, and 13 great-grandchildren. NOVA SOUTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY

John D. Brion, J.D. ’39 Jessie (Osborne) Gustafson, A.B. ’41 S. P. Auerbach, A.B. ’43 Marion (Landers) McCool, B.Ed. ’43 Eleanore S. Besson, A.B. ’44 Jean Sara (Lewis) Mechlouitz, B.Ed. ’46, M.Ed. ’47 Burton Ginsberg, A.B. ’48 Margaret A. (Walthen) James, B.M. ’48 Irene (Wentzel) McLaren, A.B. ’48 Francisco Perez-Ansa, A.B. ’48 Hope Ellen (Tanenbaum) Rivkind, A.B. ’48 Martha (Upshaw) Robinson, A.B. ’48 Edward Arons, A.B. ’49, J.D. ’52 Richard W. Glasheen, B.S.E.E. ’49 Joan N. (Rodenberg) Leschel, A.B. ’49 Keith D. MacVicar, B.S.M.E. ’49 Allen E. Morrison, B.S. ’49 Suzanne M. Pearl, B.M. ’49 Frank G. Wilson, B.S. ’49, M.S. ’51, M.D. ’56 William M. Brandon, B.S. ’50 Robert A. Bryan, A.B. ’50 Mortimer Fried, J.D. ’50 Ruth M. (Conover) Gioielli, B.Ed. ’50 Joseph Horwitz, A.B. ’50 John R. Hornick, B.S.E.E. ’50 Henry W. Hurd, B.S.C.E. ’50 Harold P. Kravitz, J.D. ’50 Wilbur S. McDuff, J.D. ’50 Joseph S. Renton, A.B. ’50 John A. Stevens, B.S.C.E. ’50 John W. Casey, A.B. ’51 Kent G. Chetlain, A.B. ’51 John B. Cianciarulo, B.S.E.S. ’51 Donald W. Hulmes, J.D. ’51 Milton Kachman, B.S.E.E. ’51 Edwin Marger, A.B. ’51, J.D. ’53 Samuel Steen, J.D. ’51, LL.M. ’69 Robert K. Wavrek, J.D. ’51 Walter J. Chwalik, B.Ed. ’52 Seymour Greenberg, A.B. ’52 William G. Jacobs, B.Ed. ’52 Edward Jarrett, B.S. ’52 John F. Kellogg, B.S.E.S. ’52 Wilson E. Larkins, B.S.M.E. ’52

Longtime University of Miami donor Wayne Huizenga died at the age of 80 on March 23. He served on the UM Board of Trustees between 1993 and 2000. Former owner of the Florida Marlins, Florida Panthers, and Miami Dolphins, Huizenga was the only entrepreneur ever to launch three Fortune 500 companies. Born in Evergreen Park, Illinois, he was 25 years old when he started Southern Sanitation Service, the precursor of Waste Management. With proceeds from the sale of Waste Management, Huizenga invested in more than 100 businesses, and went on to found Blockbuster Video and AutoNation. Among South Florida’s top philanthropists, Huizenga and his late wife, Marti, generously supported the University, including athletics and The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis. He is survived by three children and 11 grandchildren. University of Miami Trustee Emeritus Charles Zwick, the director of the U.S. Office of Management and Budget under President Lyndon B. Johnson who engineered the only balanced federal budget until the Clinton administration, died April 20 at the age of 91. After leaving civil service in 1969, Zwick became chairman, president and CEO of Southeast Bank and Southeast Banking Corporation until his retirement in 1991. As a member of the UM Board of Trustees beginning in 1983 and an emeritus trustee since 2000, he served on numerous committees for the board and visiting committees for UM schools and colleges. His generosity to UM includes a gift that named the Charles and Barbara Zwick Reflection Terrace at The Lennar Foundation Medical Center on the Coral Gables campus. He is survived by his wife, Barbara Collingwood Zwick, and two children, Bob Zwick and Janet Zwick (Tom Finch).

Steve Manning, B.S.E.E. ’52 Michael H. Mescon, A.B. ’52, M.Ed. ’53 Elliott P. Moriarty, B.Ed. ’52 Harold Rosen, J.D. ’52 Lory J. Snipes, A.B. ’52 Irene (Gray) Vaught, B.Ed. ’52, M.Ed. ’59 Delores B. Dawson, A.B. ’53 Nancy F. (Merlino) Hafner, B.Ed. ’53 Alberta (Sunshine) Kessler,

40 MIAMI   Summer 2018

B.Ed. ’53 James F. Pollack, A.B. ’53, J.D. ’55 Daniel A. Wick, J.D. ’53 Eugene P. Buccilli, B.Ed. ’54 George G. Graham, J.D. ’54 Gustave W. Larson, J.D. ’54 Jerrold R. Laux, A.B. ’54 Edward R. Lloyd, B.S.C.E. ’54 Lillian E. Meyer, B.Ed. ’54, M.Ed. ’55, Ed.D. ’71 Donald R. Moore, B.S. ’54, Ph.D. ’64 Elsie (Champe) Orr, B.S. ’54

Carol A. (Shuflin) Pappalardo, B.Ed. ’54 Clifford J. Schott, J.D. ’54 Joan C. (Ranson) Steigman, A.B. ’54 Harry H. Topalian, B.S. ’54 Daniel I. Wincor, J.D. ’54 William H. Fisher, A.B. ’55 Owen S. Freed, A.B. ’55, J.D. ’59 Joseph A. Hawkesworth, J.D. ’55 William I. Noble, B.Ed. ’55, M.Ed. ’63

Lloyd Norris, B.S.M.E. ’55 John Relle, A.B. ’55 Sheila (Levine) Erstling, A.B. ’56 Fred C. Hannahs, J.D. ’56 Roland H. Johnson, B.Ed. ’56 Philip F. Ludovici, A.B. ’56, J.D. ’59 David B. Malone, A.B. ’56 Lawrence P. McCollister, B.Ed. ’56 Kenneth L. Ryskamp, J.D. ’56 Mary S. Smith, B.Ed. ’56 Jerome H. Stern, J.D. ’56 John C. Sullivan, J.D. ’56 Alexander Tassos, A.B. ’56 Harvey C. Villa, B.S.C.E. ’56 Luke P. Benson, B.Ed. ’57 James E. Brumbaugh, A.B. ’57 Donald R. Dorshimer, B.Ed. ’57 Charles T. Ellis, M.D. ’57 Douglas E. Hafner, B.Ed. ’57, M.Ed. ’61 Jean F. (Sanzone) Harris, M.Ed. ’57 Stephen G. Jacobson, B.S. ’57 Arthur B. Lee, A.B. ’57 Cornelius J. (Jerome) Smith, J.D. ’57 Joseph Termine, B.S.E.E. ’57 Donald F. Carson, B.S.C.E. ’58 Frank Di Tullio, B.Ed. ’58 Stanley H. Garlitz, B.M. ’58, M.M. ’60 Robert D. Howerton, A.B. ’58 James W. Hunt, B.M. ’58 Irwin Kishner, J.D. ’58 George W. Letchworth, M.D. ’58 Patricia A. (Gerity) Mattson, B.Ed. ’58 David F. O’Connell, B.S.E.E. ’58 Fernando Pacheco, M.D. ’58 Norman G. Reese, J.D. ’58 Donald L. Zaccagnino, B.S. ’58 Helen P. Bell, B.Ed. ’59, M.Ed. ’68 Richard E. Biancardi, B.S.M.E. ’59 Frances (Frome) Corn, B.Ed. ’59 Sheldon Gesenswa, B.S. ’59 Alan H. Gregg, A.B. ’59, Ph.D. ’64 Robert C. Magoon, M.D. ’59 Robert A. Meeth, M.Ed. ’59 David A. Norris, B.S.I.E. ’59 William C. Smith, J.D. ’59 Lois (Isaacs) Stigler, B.Ed. ’59 Ulo Uibopuu, B.S.I.E. ’59 Ted Carageorge, M.A. ’60

Former Dean of Students William “Bill” Sheeder, who served as the University of Miami’s dean of students from 1976 to 1989 and held various other leadership positions at UM before that, died on April 1 in Huntersville, North Carolina. He was 80. Sheeder arrived at UM in 1966 as director of the then-Whitten Student Union. Over the next 23 years, he oversaw everything from campus sports and recreation to the Rathskeller in his role as director of student activities. He became assistant vice president for student affairs in 1973, a title he retained after he was promoted to dean of students in 1976. In that dual position, Sheeder oversaw the Greek system, orientation, student development, and university chaplains. A member of the Iron Arrow Honor Society, Sheeder also served as the University’s ombudsperson, helping students to resolve academic, financial, and personal problems. C. W. Collins, A.B. ’60 Marvin E. Goldsher, A.B. ’60 Lew I. Leon, B.Ed. ’60, M.Ed. ’62 Robert L. Lessne, B.Ed. ’60 Lois J. (Feuer) Lewin, A.B. ’60, M.S. ’69 Eleanor S. Miller, B.Ed. ’60 Shirley M. (Kettleman) Newman, B.S. ’60, M.Ed. ’66 Judith (Balek) Ritter, A.B. ’60 Joseph Charles Segor, J.D. ’60 Sara B. Stern, B.Ed. ’60 John McCown Blackstock, B.S.E.S. ’61, M.S. ’63 Alvis L. Corum, M.Ed. ’61, Ed.D. ’69 William H. Findley, M.Ed. ’61, Ed.D. ’72 Stanley M. Ersoff, J.D. ’61 Jane M. (Randolph) Jennings, B.Ed. ’61 Miriam S. Frank Major, B.Ed. ’61 William E. Pate, M.D. ’61 LeRoy F. Snyder, B.S.E.E. ’61 Chester E. Trost, M.Ed. ’61 Anne E. Barber, A.B. ’62, M.A. ’68 David C. Byars, B.S.E.E. ’62 William J. Burton, A.B. ’62 Raymond M. Craig, B.S.E.E. ’62 Guy P. DiNatale, B.S.E.E. ’62 Joann Adair (Overman) Jones, A.B. ’62 James T. Locascio, B.S.E.E. ’62 James (Jim) E. Marler, B.S. ’62 John F. Powers, M.D. ’62 Richard Gutting, M.Ed. ’63 Robert F. Hathaway, A.B. ’63 Edmund T. Hittson, A.B. ’63, M.A. ’70 Alan A. Jabbour, A.B. ’63

Theodore W. Jennings, Ph.D. ’63 Mary W. Kessler, B.S.N. ’63 Demetrius F. Kostas, B.S.C.E. ’63 Ellen J. Shaw, B.Ed. ’63 Diane C. Brandt, B.Ed. ’64 Terrence E. D’Avignon, B.S.E.E. ’64 Elvira M. Dopico, C.T.P. ’64 Miriam Gerchakov, A.B. ’64 Gilbert H. Grosvenor, D.L.T. ’64 L.J. Hoffman, A.B. ’64 Honora A. Jaffe, A.B. ’64 Alan K. Lindblom, A.B. ’64 Arnold D. Schatzman, J.D. ’64 Lourdes (Alvina) Burgess, M.S. ’65 Marilyn (Kornstein) Herskowitz, B.Ed. ’65 Walter S. Jolliff, A.B. ’65 Mary C. Koch Youree Richard, B.S.N. ’65 John M. Schwebel, B.Ed. ’65, M.Ed. ’70 Thomas A. Dooling, B.S. ’66 Frank A. Ferren, M.D. ’66 Jose B. Gonzalez, B.S.C.E. ’66 E.B. Hoch, A.B. ’66 Jeanette M. (Ott) McKeachern, B.S.N. ’66 Bertan W. Morrow, M.S. ’66, Ph.D. ’71 M. Lee Pearce, J.D. ’66 Janice M. Revitz, B.Ed. ’66, J.D. ’69 Richard D. Siegel, A.B. ’66 Gail P. (Harris) Vinocur, B.Ed. ’66 Robert J. Walk, A.B. ’66 Robert W. Wilcosky, M.Ed. ’66 William B. Arrington, A.B. ’67 Theodore Z. David, J.D. ’67

Sheridan A. Golin, A.B. ’67 Richard M. Higgins, A.B. ’67 John P. Jett, B.Ed. ’67 Joseph A. Reynolds, A.B. ’67 Marjorie D. Abrams, M.Ed. ’68, Ph.D. ’75 Onelia V. Cerda C.T.P. ’68 Jacinta Cuadrado, C.T.P. ’68 Judy (Amerkan) Jones, B.S.N. ’68 Alfred J. Lozar, M.Ed. ’68 Ronald B. Nelson, B.Ed. ’68 Ann L. (Gutherly) Robinson, M.Ed. ’68 George P. Trodella, A.B. ’68 Ernestine “Tina” (Freeman) Von Gonten, M.Ed. ’68 Julio E. Alvarez, B.S.E.E. ’69 Lawrence J. Boxer, A.B. ’69 Dana C. Ferrell, A.B. ’69, J.D. ’73 Marjorie M. Gross, A.B. ’69 Carl R. Johnson, M.S.E.E. ’69 Lee J. Rickard, B.S. ’69 Robert F. Bouchard, J.D. ’70 Edward P. Guettler, Ph.D. ’70 Ronald A. Maddux, M.D. ’70 Robert “Bob” A. Mann, A.B. ’70 Jay R. Olian, J.D. ’70 Barbara E. (Lawrence) Taylor, M.Ed. ’70 Mildred (Altman) Vinicor, B.Ed. ’70, M.A. ’72 Douglas A. Bryn, A.B. ’71 David R. Chapman, M.D. ’71 Alan S. Chotiner, J.D. ’71 Bernard F. Cominsky, B.Ed. ’71 Richard P. Cotter, A.B. ’71 Arthur D. Klein, M.D. ’71 Darlene McGovern, B.Ed. ’71 Ruth (Haynes) Sargent, A.B. ’71 Cassandra (Bevier) Schuh, A.B. ’71      Summer 2018  MIAMI 41

Class Notes

Transformational Fundraiser, Stalwart Leader Susan Tamny Jones, whose 20-year career as a transformational fundraiser and beloved colleague at the University of Miami left an indelible mark on the University and its community, died on December 25, 2017. She was 72. With endearing grace, a personal touch, and astute leadership, she served as associate vice president for University Advancement and was instrumental in the success of the University’s two major capital campaigns, Momentum and Momentum 2, which raised more than $3 billion. Her leadership was recognized during her induction into the Iron Arrow Honor Society. She also served on the boards of several local organizations. A native of Maryland, Jones is survived by her husband, Edgar Jones, two sons, and two grandchildren.

H. (Herbert) Allan Shore, J.D. ’71, LL.M.E. ’72 Martha L. Castillo, Ed.D. ’72 Edgar H. Clayton, B.C.S. ’72 Maxine (Alsbrooks) Ford, M.Ed. ’72 Jean (Whobrey) Holden, B.F.A. ’72 Albert C. (Layder) Leader, J.D. ’72 David H. Lerner, B.M. ’72 Bruce E. MacCallum, A.B. ’72 George L. Sharp, A.B. ’72 Gerald L. Solomon, B.Ed. ’72 Julian R. Spradley, J.D. ’72 Louis J. Coelho LL.M.T. ’73 Nancy Sue (Scrinopskie) Epoch, B.M. ’73 Burton H. Fick, B.Ed. ’73 Steven J. Kingsbury, M.S. ’73, Ph.D. ’76 Sharon L. Pioch, B.Ed. ’73 Richard W. Rappaport, J.D. ’73 Jerry B. Schreiber, J.D. ’73 Carl F. Wile, B.S.E.E. ’73 William P. Burns, J.D. ’74 Elton (Toni) K. Caicedo, A.B. ’74, A.B. ’74 Arcie D. Ewell, M.Ed. ’74 Douglas L. Frazier, J.D. ’74 Jorge Rodriguez-Chomat, J.D. ’74 Robin C. Whittaker, M.M. ’74 Anthony Acosta, M.D. ’75 Guy W. Beaven, A.B. ’75 Elizabeth M. Bohn, A.B. ’75, J.D. ’79 Heriberto R. Cabada, F.M.D. ’75 Leslie A. Cooperman, B.Ed. ’75 Robert A. Nicotri, A.B. ’75 Arlyne M. (Gordon) Warshall, J.D. ’75 Allyn W. Conway, A.B. ’76 Dale W. Erwin, A.B. ’76

Bruce H. Randolph, A.B. ’76 David W. Vincent, D.M.A. ’76 John W. Alexander, M.M. ’77 Charles P. Guanci, A.B. ’77 Marjean M. (Koperski) Halopka, M.Ed. ’77 Pamela J. Pujals, A.B. ’77 Sandra A. Schatten, B.Ed. ’77 Alan D. Atlas, J.D. ’78 Marlowe J. Blake, J.D. ’78 John N. Drummond, M.D. ’78 Nga V. Duong, B.S.N. ’78 Fred S. McChesney, J.D. ’78 Abelardo Ruiz, B.Arch. ’78 Susan J. Uscier, M.Ed. ’78 Esmie L. Brown, B.S.Ed. ’79 Scott A. Burin, A.B. ’79 Daniel K. Corbett, J.D. ’79 Maryvonne A. Diaz, C.N.P. ’79 Norman L. Johnson E.D.S. ’79 Polly S. Zaldivar, A.B. ’79 James J. Banek, M.S.Ed. ’80 Walter P. Kubany, M.S. ’80 Carolyn A. Pickard, J.D. ’80 Katie S. (Ingraham) Rashed, B.S.Ed. ’80

Hazel L. Ruffin, M.S.N. ’80 Michael A. Vandetty, J.D. ’80 Diane C. Cohen, B.S.N. ’81 Peter J. deGorter, A.B. ’81 Jeanne M. Martinez, M.S.Ed. ’81 Lisa S. (Novick) Millhauser, J.D. ’81 Julie L. Capps, B.S.Ed. ’82 Joseph S. Greene, A.B. ’82 Shelley J. Kravitz, J.D. ’82 David P. Rowe, J.D. ’82 Linda L. Reel, J.D. ’82 Karen L. Tenne, M.D. ’82 William E. Dellow, J.D. ’83 Charles J. Frank, A.B. ’83 Marcene (Haaland) Rigsby, A.B. ’83 Octavio Tinsly, M.S.Ed. ’83 John H. Franklin, D.D. ’84 Rajiv Khanna, LL.M.G. ’84 Daniel W. McIntyre, LL.M. ’84 Franz F. Springmann, J.D. ’84 Frederik W. van Vonno, J.D. ’85 Carlos J. Ortiz De Valderrama, M.P.A. ’86 Hanna H. Gray, D.H.E. ’86

Carl L. Knopf, M.S.Ed. ’86 Loyce W. Longino, M.S.Ed. ’86, Ph.D. ’97 Beverley E. McDermott, M.A. ’86 Michael E. Radell, J.D. ’86 Lari M. White, B.M. ’88 Alejandro Bonet, B.Arch. ’89 Valienti A. Henry, B.S. ’89 Laura Moolenaar, M.S.Ed. ’89 Steven D. Stokes, J.D. ’90 Joni B. Braunstein Hesch, LL.M.E. ’92 Ladd J. Lissauer, M.S.Ed. ’92 Debra L. Zelman, J.D. ’92 Marilyn A. Anderson, Ph.D. ’93 Kerry Foster, A.B. ’94 Randi T. Arnet, B.S.C. ’95 Gary A. Michak, J.D. ’95 Rebecca D. Morlidge, M.S.Ed. ’96 Ernesto Garcia, B.Arch. ’97 Lashan (Gaskins) Fagan, J.D. ’98 Christopher R. Sweeney, M.M. ’98, Ph.D. ’02 Alicia U. Stephenson, A.B. ’99 Christopher A. Chopin, J.D. ’01 Christina Martinez-Serrano, M.S.I.E. ’03 Orestes Amador, M.S.Ed. ’04 Justin L. Green, B.S.I.T. ’04 Gipsy Rodriguez, A.B. ’05 Bryan S. Pata, B.L.A. ’07 Silvia J. Rodriguez, B.S.Ed. ’11 Danielle J. Rothstein, A.B. ’14 Jonathan Balan, A.B. ’15 *Names recorded as of April 2, 2018. We research each name in the “In Memoriam” section, but errors can occur. Please email any corrections or clarifications to or call 305-284-2872.

Longtime University Leader Cyrus “Russ” Jollivette, J.D. ’80, who served in a number of senior-level positions at the University over a nearly 24-year period, including as executive assistant to President Tad Foote and as vice president for government relations, died on April 30 in Miami at the age of 71. “Dad often said he could not have imagined his time at UM without Russ; he depended on him heavily in all aspects of running the University of Miami,” recalls Foote’s daughter, Julia Foote LeStage. After he left UM, Jollivette went on to a successful career at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida—as group vice president and then senior vice president of public affairs, and later senior vice president of federal government relations. During his stint at the health insurance company, he helped spearhead a generous gift to UM’s School of Nursing and Health Studies for scholarships for minority students. He is survived by a daughter, Lynn Jollivette Johns, and two sisters, Regina Jollivette Frazier and Cleo L. Jollivette.

42 MIAMI   Summer 2018


305-284-2872 or 1-800-UMALUMS n

Alumni Board of Directors

Frank Jimenez, B.S. ’87, President

Brenda Baty, B.B.A. ’90, Immediate Past President

Alumni Trustees

Marvin Shanken, B.B.A. ’65 Geisha Williams, B.S.I.E. ’83


Taghreed Al-Saraj, B.F.A. ’99, M.S.Ed. ’01 Daniel Carvajal, B.B.A. ’08 Victoria A. Colon, M.B.A. ’98 Xavier Cortada, A.B. ’86, M.P.A. ’91, J.D. ’91 Charlotte Dauphin, B.S.C. ’07 Jose Felix Diaz, A.B. ’02 Darren Dupriest, B.B.A. ’91 Jorge Duyos, B.S.I.E. ’85, M.S.I.E. ’88 Bill J. Fisse, B.B.A. ’75, M.B.A. ’77 Allison Gillespie, B.A.M. ’91, M.S.Ed. ’95, M.S. ’03 Lissette Gonzalez, B.A.M. ’01 Shannon K. High-Bassalik, B.S.C. ’88 Robert J. Munch, A.B. ’73 Nilesh Parikh, B.B.A. ’05 Marc Risser, B.B.A. ’93 Racquel S. Russell, B.S.C. ’00 Gulnar Vaswani, B.B.A ’91, M.B.A. ’93 Spencer B. Weinkle, B.S.C. ’07 Doug Weiser, A.B. ’78, J.D. ’82

Young Alumni Leadership Council Representative Emilio Garcia, A.B. ’10

Kourtney Gibson, B.B.A. ’03, President-Elect

Guillermo de Aranzabal Agudo, M.B.A. ’84, Vice President

Faculty Representatives

Christian Diez, B.S. ’00, M.D. ’04, M.B.A. ’12 Delegate, Faculty Senate Winston Warrior, B.B.A. ’93, M.B.A. ’96

Student Representatives

Kyle Kingma, President, UM Student Alumni Ambassadors

’Canes Communities

Atlanta Marc Leven, B.B.A. ’10, Austin Kimberly Oren, B.A.M. ’00, Boston Kathryn Collins, B.S.C. ’15, Brazil Eduardo Medeiros Vieira, B.B.A. ’98, Broward County Ken Graff, M.B.A. ’03, B.B.A. ’98 Charlotte Jason Wilson, B.S.C.E. ’98, Chicago Vickie Horn, B.S. ’82, Cincinnati Marc Bouche, B.Arch. ’84, Colombia Carlos Largacha-Martínez, Ph.D. ’06, Dallas Dylan Brooks, B.S.C. ’10, Denver Josh Josephson, B.B.A. ’07, Detroit Joshua Lopez, A.B. ’10,

Cynthia Hudson, A.B. ’84, M.A. ’97 Vice President

Brian L. Itzkowitz, B.B.A. ’90, Vice President

Houston Hashim Abdullah, M.B.A. ’17, Indianapolis Danielle Haupers, B.S.B.A. ’09, danielleevabruno@ London Maria Newstrom, B.Arch. ’09, CanesUnitedKingdom@gmail. com Los Angeles Jaclyn Mullen, B.M. ’04, Louisville Brad Butler, B.B.A ’11, Middle East Reyadh Al-Rabeah, B.S.I.E. ’87, Nashville Ben Bruno, B.M. ’07, New Jersey Jennifer Smith, B.B.A. ’94, New York Michael Gohari, B.B.A. ’11, Orlando Adrian Burrowes, M.D. ’00, Palm Beach County Amy Kent, A.B. ’83, Philadelphia Stephen Bernstein, A.B. ’13, Phoenix Michael Langley, A.B. ’04, Raleigh-Durham Christian Robinson, A.B. ’05, San Francisco Fawn Perazzo, B.S. ’98, Sarasota Chris Clayton, B.S.C. ’94, Seattle Jordan Louie, ’07,

Katie Phang, J.D. ’00, Vice President

Southwest Florida Meredith Barnard, B.S.M.A.S. ’09, meredithleigh7@ Spain Jaime Escalante, B.B.A. ’93, M.B.A. ’11, Tampa Giovanny Cardenas, A.B. ’04, Washington, D.C. Jennifer Del Toro, A.B. ’11, jenniferdeltoro.001@

Special Interest Groups

Black Alumni Society Cynthia Cochran, B.B.A. ’01, M.P.A. ’06, Band of the Hour Debbie Baker Robinson, M.B.A. ’94, D.N.P. ’10, LGBTQ Judson Dry, B.B.A. ’07, Public Health Sciences Daniella Orihuela, B.S.B.E. ’11, M.P.H. ’14, UM Sports Hall of Fame Tracy Kerdyk, A.B. ’88, tracykerdyk@

School and College Groups

College of Engineering Andrew Doyle, B.S.I.E. ’08,, and Arthur “Rob” Weaver, B.S.M.E. ’08, J.D. ’11, School of Law Detra Shaw-Wilder, J.D. ’94, detra.shawwilder@gmail. com, and Mark F. Raymond, J.D. ’83,

Miller School of Medicine Robin Straus-Furlong, B.S. ’78, M.D. ’82,, and Ana I. Gonzalez, B.S. ’81, M.D. ’85, School of Nursing and Health Studies Debbie Anglade, M.S.N. ’10, Ph.D. ’14,, and Carmen Sierra, B.S.N. ’96, Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science Sandra St. Hilaire, A.B. ’08, M.A. ’11,

Alumni records of the University of Miami are kept strictly confidential. Directory information is released only to other members of the alumni community unless an alumnus or alumna has requested complete privacy. On a very limited occasion and only at the approval of the UM Alumni Association Board of Directors, directory information is shared with outside vendors who are in a joint relationship with the University. Should you not wish to release your name to any outside vendor and/or other members of the UM alumni community, please notify the Office of Alumni Relations in writing at P.O. Box 248053, Coral Gables, Florida 33124-1514.

We’ve got some ’Canes over here in Atlanta (pictured at right)—and in dozens of other cities around the globe! ’Canes Communities, proudly supported by the University of Miami Alumni Association, offer programming open to all alumni, parents, students, and friends of the U. To connect with your local Hurricanes family for networking, events, and fun, visit

To get involved with the ’Canes Community in your area, submit a UConnect form at      Summer 2018  MIAMI 43


Construction progress is swift on the 81,800-square-foot Carol Soffer Football Indoor Practice Facility, slated to open on the Coral Gables campus just in time for fall practice.


Raising the Roof

After my diagnosis, others had given up on me. On my life. But not at Sylvester. Stories like Jonathan’s are what drive Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center’s more than 300 cancer-focused physicians and researchers every day, as they push through the edge of possibility in pursuit of the next breakthrough, the next treatment, the next cure. My name is Jonathan, and I’m still here.



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The passion. the pride. the drive.


In your swag and on your tag, it’s all about the U. Best of all, each U plate funds scholarships for UM students. Get yours today!

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