Dear CHOP Alumni Family,

Cindy W. Christian, MD Contributed by Cindy W. Christian, MD The last time I wrote, in the spring of this year, I specifically stated: “I think we are seeing the light at the end of the pandemic tunnel—I sure hope so!” Seems like that was a little too hopeful. The slog is long, but I hope all of you are safe and happy and well.

As always, when I write this column, I think of our CHOP Alumni Motto: Keep … Tradition, Keep … in Mind, Keep … in Touch!

Keep … Tradition: Some of our traditions have taken a hit over the past year, and I feel especially bad that 2 major pediatric meetings (the PAS meeting and the NCE AAP meeting) scheduled to be held in Philadelphia over the last 18 months were cancelled due to the pandemic. It meant we missed our opportunity to show off our amazing city and wonderful hospital system. Perhaps these organizations will put us back on the rotation ASAP. Fingers crossed!

I do want to take some space to recognize the fantastic executive committee of the Alumni Organization. We have members from all departments who help support the missions of the hospital in many ways. I’d like to formally thank the following, wonderful contributors to the Exec Committee (in alphabetical order):

  • Amanda Burden, MD, Department of Anesthesiology, Cooper University Hospital (and our long-time community board member)
  • Sandy Burnham, MD, Department of Pediatrics (and a wonderful rheumatologist)
  • Carol Pasquariello, MD, Department of Anesthesiology and Critical Care (and one of my first-ever senior residents!)
  • Bill Peranteau, MD, Department of Surgery (and an innovative fetal surgeon)
  • Graham Quinn, MD, Department of Surgery (and a mostly retired ophthalmologist; we may need an emeritus category!)
  • Lisa States, MD, Department of Radiology (and an expert on bone pathology who often helps me with child abuse cases)
  • Char Witmer, MD, Department of Pediatrics (and a great hematologist)

And welcome some of our newest Exec members: Amy Kim, MD, Department of Psychiatry; Nancy Spinner, PhD, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine; Mike Nance, MD, Department of General and Fetal Surgery and Angelo Giardino, MD, Department of Pediatrics at the University of Utah Health.

Additionally, I am so fortunate to have Tina Master, MD, join me in leading our alumni efforts. Many of you already know Tina, but just in case: Tina has been a CHOP general pediatrician for almost 3 decades, as a resident, chief resident, and Vice Program Director for the residency. She then completed a sports medicine fellowship at CHOP, and now directs our Minds Matter Concussion Program. Tina is full of great ideas and enthusiasm, and I love working with her to advance our alumni efforts.

And finally, if YOU are interested in joining the CHOP Alumni Organization Executive Committee, we are calling for self- nominations. We would love to add a few more enthusiastic members to our team. It’s easy, fun, and a great way to stay connected. If you are interested, please send a few lines about your interest to We look forward to hearing from you!

Keep … in Mind: Getting involved with the Alumni Organization has never been easier, more rewarding, and impactful! I hope you’ll consider making a gift, as well. Visit today.

And finally, Keep ... in Touch!

Strategic Learning book cover Former CHOP resident Bob Kamei (1983-86) just published a book based on his popular undergraduate course at the National University of Singapore called Strategic Learning: A Holistic Approach to Studying. It’s available on Amazon. After leaving CHOP, Bob joined the pediatric faculty at University of California San Francisco and ran its residency program for 17 years. He was then recruited to Duke as Vice Dean of Education in 2006 to help start its new medical school in Singapore. From 2016 to 2019, he was Associate Provost (Education) at NUS, furthering his work teaching students

about the learning sciences. In this book, Bob shares his unique perspective as an educator and physician to provide a strategic approach to learning that will help all students optimize their learning. Feel free to contact Bob to say hello or provide him with a (favorable!) book review! His email is

I recently learned that Tara Wenger, MD, received the 2021 AJMG John M. Opitz Young Investigator Award for her article “Activating variants in PDGFRB result in a spectrum of disorders responsible to imatinib monotherapy.” Tara is living in Seattle and is an associate professor in the Division of Genetic Medicine at Seattle Children’s Hospital. She enjoys the Pacific Northwest with her husband, Jesse Wenger (Med/Peds class of ’12), who is an assistant professor in the Division of Critical Care, and their 4 daughters. If you want to reach out to Tara, she would love to hear from you at

As we enter the season of giving, we hope you’ll make a donation. Until next time, enjoy, work hard, but not too hard, and keep in touch! Oh, and don’t forget to nominate yourself to sit on our Executive Committee.

Cindy W. Christian, MD
President, CHOP Alumni Association

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