Alvin M. Ring
Alvin M. Ring (M.D. 1958) received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the College of American Pathologists in September. The award is given to members who have made a broad and positive impact on patient care through pathology. Ring serves as chief pathologist and medical director of the Silver Cross Lab at Silver Cross Hospital in Joliet, Illinois, and is a clinical professor of pathology at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine.
James H. Thrall
James H. Thrall (M.D. 1968, Fellowship 1983) was elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies, the nation’s most prestigious body for professionals in health and medicine. He has served as radiologist-in-chief at Massachusetts General Hospital and as the Juan M. Taveras Professor of Radiology at Harvard Medical School since 1988.
George Meredith, M.D. (Residency 1970), of Virginia Beach, Virginia, has published an e-book, Your Child’s Airway and Dentofacial Development.
Steven M. Hacker, M.D. (Residency 1991), has authored The Medical Entrepreneur: Pearls, Pitfalls and Practical Business Advice for Doctors, and founded a CME symposium by the same name, as well as the websites Skinstore.com and PassportMD.com. A dermatologist, he is based in Delray Beach, Florida, and recently opened an office in Avon, Colorado.
Salvatore Pacella, M.D. (Residency 2007), is now chief of plastic surgery at Scripps Clinic & Research Institute and Scripps Green Hospital in La Jolla, California. He is the youngest surgeon to have been appointed to the position. Pacella, who also holds an M.B.A. from the U-M, was recently inducted into the American College of Surgeons as well.
Garrett Sparks (M.D. 2008) received the 2011 Beatrix A. Hamburg Award for the Best New Research Poster by a child and adolescent psychiatry resident from the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. A resident at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, Sparks, who also holds a master’s degree from the U-M School of Public Health, received the award for his poster, “Temper Outbursts in Youth at Risk for Bipolar Disorder.”—MF
The U-M Medical Center Alumni Society honored three individuals for their outstanding contributions to medicine at the annual MCAS Awards Dinner on April 14.
Samuel Broder (M.D. 1970), former director of the NIH’s National Cancer Institute, consults for the pharmaceutical and biotech industries. He received the Distinguished Achievement Award, given to alumni or faculty members who typify the Michigan tradition of excellence and bring credit to the U-M through personal accomplishment and professional achievement.
Jon A. Jacobson
Professor of radiology and director of the Division of Musculoskeletal Radiology at the U-M, Jon A. Jacobson, M.D., received the Early Distinguished Career Achievement Award, recognizing his exemplary achievements in medicine during the first 20 years of his career.
Carol A. Kauffman
Carol A. Kauffman (M.D. 1969, Residency 1971), U-M professor of internal medicine and chief of the Infectious Diseases Section at the VA Ann Arbor Healthcare System, received the Distinguished Service Award, which recognizes professional achievements and/or humanitarian service to the welfare of mankind. —KB
For more information visit The Medical Center Alumni Society
Eric and Keri Dziuban go climbing in Swaziland with local teens whom they mentor. | Courtesy of Eric Dziuban
Eric Dziuban grew up in Saginaw, Michigan, in a family that rarely traveled. “A big vacation for us was Pennsylvania,” he says.
But oh, the places he’d go in his imagination, thanks to the lighted globe that served as a night-light in his bedroom. “I’d sit there before bed, just staring at it, imagining all these different parts of the world, not wanting to go to sleep,” Dziuban recalls.
It was a pretty big deal when he went all the way to Kalamazoo to attend Western Michigan University. Then it was medical school at Duke; medical electives in Poland, Ghana and Jordan; and a pediatrics residency at Michigan, completed in 2010. Now he’s working in Swaziland, a southern African nation with the world’s highest rate of HIV infection, in a pediatric HIV clinic that’s part of the Baylor International Pediatric AIDS Initiative.
Dziuban and his colleagues see 100 to 200 patients a day in a country with a severe shortage of physicians and where the stigma attached to HIV is profound.
“People are very hesitant to admit to others that they’re HIV-positive, and sometimes even to themselves,” he says. “It’s easy for me to say, ‘Face the truth, come to terms with your HIV diagnosis,’ but for people who face real consequences for doing that — losing their jobs, or women being kicked out of their homes — it’s definitely a serious matter. It’s not just shame.” Especially when children, undiagnosed and living with the disease for 10 years, come through the door.
“The highs of this job are extremely high and the lows are extremely low,” he says. “We see some of the most heartbreaking, gut-wrenching things I could imagine, impossibly sad situations that sometimes we have no capability to help. That gets counterbalanced by incredible successes, saving lives every day in the most literal sense imaginable, seeing healthy children that had no chance of survival before these medicines became available to them.”
Dziuban’s passions for pediatrics and globe-trotting converged when he was in medical school. “The more I started learning in medicine, the more it became obvious there were huge geographic disparities,” he says. “Every place in the world needs doctors, but some places need them much more than others. Where else would you want to be than where what you’re doing is so needed?”
He and his wife, Keri, a special education teacher, find solace in Africa’s natural beauty. In February 2010, they ventured to Tanzania to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro.
“It was definitely the hardest physical task I’ve ever performed,” he says. “We got caught in a pretty immense blizzard the day we were summiting the peak. Groups of people were being turned back. Fortunately, our guides were extremely experienced and kept us going all the way to the top.”
Dziuban’s contract ends in June, and he doesn’t know yet whether he’ll stay another year or move on. He does know that, unlike Kilimanjaro’s summit, the end of the pediatric HIV epidemic is not in sight.
“There’s a need for strong clinical leadership in this area, so I hope to stay working in pediatric HIV for the foreseeable future,” he says. “I haven’t been able to think of anything else that I’d rather be focusing my efforts on.” —JEFF MORTIMER