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Oct. 7, 2013

What's Going on Here?


Dear Colleague,

Last week began on a sad note.  Monday afternoon, after last week’s email was sent, we learned that Chancellor Emeritus James Shore, MD, died at his ranch in Wyoming on Sunday, Sept. 29. Jim, who served as chairman of the Department of Psychiatry before becoming chancellor, was a respected friend and colleague who helped bring about the development of our campus and, at the request of then-President Betsy Hoffman, began the process of consolidation of the University of Colorado Denver’s downtown and Aurora campuses. A memorial service has been tentatively set for Saturday, Nov. 2. Our deepest condolences go out to the Shore family, including his wife Chris, and his son Jay Shore, MD, an associate professor of psychiatry at our School.

Wednesday evening, the School of Medicine’s Council of Advisors, chaired by Debra Duke, hosted a wonderful event to raise funds for the Dean’s Endowed Chair. Guests were treated to a view from the rooftop of Building 500 and a spread provided by CPA firm CBIZ Mayer Hoffman McCann PC. It was a terrific evening and I am very grateful for the generous support of those who attended (and those who could not be there) and for the kind words offered by Lilly Marks, the university’s vice president of health affairs, and Chip Ridgway, MD, senior associate dean for academic affairs. The endowment corpus now has grown to $4 million, 80 percent toward the goal of $5 million.

Thursday morning I was at Denver International Airport at 6:30 am with 150 business, health care, education and political leaders for the annual Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce Leadership Exchange trip, this year to Pittsburgh. I had not been there for more than 50 years and it was really interesting to see its transformation from a smoggy steel town to an environmentally beautiful city dominated by health care, entrepreneurism and the arts and music. During the trip, we visited the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC).  It is more than a “medical center.” It is a juggernaut with 23 hospitals and a 64 percent market share in the region. UPMC got its start thanks in part to its recruitment of Thomas Starzl, MD, PhD, former professor and chair of surgery here who left in 1981 to continue his work in transplantation in Pittsburgh. We also visited with Arthur Levine, MD, dean of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, who has had a remarkable 15 years taking his school from near 30th in NIH funding to fifth. The School also gets an enormous amount of support from UPMC to support is academic mission.

We got back from Pittsburgh just in time on Saturday, Oct. 5, to attend the Children’s Hospital Gala, which was a very nice event – moving stories, good food and very good entertainment.  And the previous weekend, the Global Down Syndrome Foundation’s annual Be Beautiful Be Yourself Fashion Show raised more than $1.6 million, some of which supports the Linda Crnic Institute for Down Syndrome, which includes the Sie Center for Down Syndrome at Children’s Hospital. The fifth annual benefit attracted more than 1,100 supporters and bestowed honors on Kyra Phillips of the HLN cable television news network.

The CU Cancer Center announced last week that the U.S. Department of Defense has awarded a $5.9 million grant to researchers Jennifer Richer, PhD, and Anthony Elias, MD, to aid development of drugs that target androgen receptors as a driver of breast cancer. The grant notification came before the federal government shutdown last Tuesday, Oct. 1, and serves as an important reminder that research matters. The federal government’s ongoing budget stalemate and the government shutdown can only have an adverse effect on the health and welfare of our country’s citizens.

Russell Glasgow, PhD, has joined the School of Medicine as associate director of the Colorado Health Outcomes research program and as visiting professor in the Department of Family Medicine and we are happy to welcome him back to Colorado. Glasgow was most recently the deputy director of implementation science at the National Cancer Institute’s Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences. Prior to that, Glasgow had worked for the AMC Cancer Research Center from 1998 to 2002 and Kaiser Permanente Colorado’s Institute for Health Research from 2002 to 2010.

The Department of Family Medicine sponsored a preceptor-development program on “Making the Most of Observations When Assessing Students” in Vail this past weekend. About 15 family physicians and general internists who precept in the rural and community care block, family medicine leadership and our family medicine student education group participated.

And, because I am finishing this letter as Matt Prater is kicking the winning field goal for the Broncos, it is easy to say have a good week,

Richard D. Krugman, MD
Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs and
Dean, School of Medicine

"What’s Going On Here" is an email news bulletin from Richard Krugman, MD, Dean of the CU School of Medicine, that is distributed to inform University of Colorado School of Medicine faculty members about issues pertaining to the School’s mission of education, research, clinical care and community service. If you would like to receive these emails directly, or to unsubscribe, please contact Cheryl.Welch@ucdenver.edu.

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