Dear CHOP Alumni Family,

For this column there’s a slight rearranging of our usual format to highlight some big news.

Keep … in Mind. CHOP recently launched the campaign For Tomorrow’s Breakthroughs — the most ambitious fundraising effort in our 162-year history — and I invite you to join us. Together as a family of donors, we will raise $1 billion by 2020 as we transform the future of pediatric care for patients and children worldwide. Funds raised will support game-changing research, an exceptional patient family experience, the best training for future leaders in pediatrics, outreach to children and families in need, and resources that give CHOP the power to act quickly and say “yes” to new opportunities as they arise. There are many ways you can support the For Tomorrow’s Breakthroughs campaign at CHOP, and every dollar will be earmarked to the area(s) you are most passionate about. Keep an eye out for more information about the campaign or reach out to Molly Force, CHOP’s Alumni Organization liaison, at 267-426-6457 or alumni@email.chop.edu.

Keep … Tradition: Spring is time for many of our Alumni Organization traditions, including the annual Richard D. Wood Distinguished Alumnus Award, presented at the annual meeting of the medical staff. This year, we honored Jim Katowitz, emeritus professor of Ophthalmology. Dr. Katowitz directs the Oculoplastic and Orbital Surgery program at CHOP and the Center for Human Appearance at Penn. Dr Katowitz developed CHOP’s oculoplastic program and has trained a generation of physicians both nationally and internationally to manage oculoplastic disorders. Additionally, Dr Katowitz is an accomplished baritone who performs for Baroque and Renaissance music festivals and for colleagues. Congratulations to Jim, a superb physician and Renaissance man.

In keeping with another newer tradition, we celebrated the amazing research accomplishments of our trainees at our Third Annual Resident and Fellow Grand Rounds. This year, Irit Rasooly presented her research “Newborn screening in the US can miss persistent mild hypothyroidism;” Sarah Henrickson presented “Discovering novel immunodeficiencies by studying patients with severe persistent viral cutaneous infections;” Christopher Thom presented “Fine mapping genomic regulatory regions for platelet traits using machine learning;” and Matthew Taylor presented “Immune memory enhances the cytokine storm and alters response to treatment in familial hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis 2 due to tumor necrosis factor a.” Are you impressed? You should be! They all did an amazing job.

And finally, Keep ... in Touch! This May, the CHOP residency Class of 2002 held a 15-year reunion in Philadelphia. Here’s a report from Catherine Nelson, who, with a little help, organized the event: “Eighteen members of the class, plus Steve Ludwig, were able to attend some part of the weekend. The events included a Friday night cocktail party in Center City; Saturday morning breakfast at CHOP, career path discussion with current residents, and tour of the campus; Saturday night dinner; and Sunday brunch. Alumni traveled from Portland, Oregon; San Francisco Bay Area; Savannah, Georgia; Memphis, Tennessee; Ann Arbor, Michigan; Chicago, Illinois; Washington, DC; New York, New York; northern New Jersey; and the greater Philly area. The wide scope of careers among class members is remarkable, including toxicology (Poison Control Center Director), endocrine (Gender Clinic Director), palliative care, ED, cardiology, psychiatry, sports medicine, oncology, allergy, healthcare consulting, and diverse hospitalist, primary care, and medical school/hospital administration roles. We all agreed that despite the vast changes to CHOP’s campus — making it unrecognizable — our camaraderie made it feel as if 15 years had passed overnight. We will definitely have another reunion and encourage all classes to take the plunge to organize one. We are very appreciative to the support we received from the Residency Program, specifically Chief Resident Eloise Salmon.”

If you are interested in organizing a reunion of your classmates, please let us know; we are happy to provide some guidance! Additionally, if you have any news about yourself or your CHOP friends, please share with me at christian@email.chop.edu so that I can spread the word.

Best wishes always,

Cindy W. Christian, MD
President, CHOP Alumni Organization


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