Updated: September 30, 2013
Thanks to past philanthropic support, new opportunities and programs in education, research and community outreach have been created. Please take a moment to read about our charitable giving funds as you consider becoming a contributor to the University of Michigan Department of Family Medicine.Your gift will help ensure continued excellence, innovation, and quality care in family medicine.
December 15, 2011: Fall Awards Presentation
In a special awards ceremony on December 14, the Department honored the winners of the William Clippert Gorenflo Research Award and the Harold Kessler, M.D. Scholarship in Family Medicine.
Daniel W. Gorenflo, Ph.D., his wife, Carole, and his daughter, Caroline, attended the event to present the award in memory of Daniel’s father.
|Joanna Lee, D.O., house officer I, accepts a certificate from Daniel, Carole and Caroline Gorenflo.|
The Gorenflo award is designed to provide incentive and reward passion for research, and is intended for a medical student, HOI or HOII who is doing research with a family medicine faculty member.
Joanna Lee, D.O., house officer I, was the recipient of the award. She is currently engaged in a research project with Caroline R. Richardson, M.D., associate professor, Amy B. Locke, M.D., assistant professor, and Leslie A. Wimsat, Ph.D, that will determine the extent to which family physicians are able to leverage the use of free Web-based diet and exercise tools to help obese patient successfully lose weight.
Barbara Kessler and her husband, Dick Soble, were also present to award the scholarship in honor of Barbara's father.
|Barbara Kessler and Philip Zazove, M.D., interim chair and professor, present the Kessler Scholarship to deserving winner, Hela Issaq.|
The Kessler scholarship was created by Susan, Barbara and Sam Kessler in honor of their father and is awarded to a fourth-year medical student with a demonstrated commitment to the principles of and a career in family medicine, as well as an interest and dedication in helping rural and/or medically underserved populations.
Hela Issaq, who has earned her Master of Public Health from Dartmouth College and has worked with HIV patients in Oakland Calif, plans to complete a residency in family medicine. Following that she would like to provide primary care to uninsured patients in an urban area and work with the community to help prevent the spread of chronic diseases.
See more pictures on the Department's Facebook page.
October 27, 2011: New Professorship Installation
Mack T. Ruffin IV, M.D., M.P.H., will be installed as the Dr. Max and Buena Lichter Research Professor on Monday, November 21, 2011 at 4:30 p.m. in Ford Auditorium. Please join the Department to celebrate this installation and look for more information in the upcoming Family Medicine newsletter.
August 18, 2011: The Department of Family Medicine Thomas L. Schwenk, M.D. Best Resident Teacher Award is Established
The Department of Family Medicine celebrated the retirement of the Goerge A. Dean, M.D. Chair of Family Medicine, Thomas L. Schwenk, this summer. Dr. Schwenk accepted the position of Dean of the Universy of Nevada School of Medicine and Vice President for Health Sciences at the University of Nevada, Reno and left his position as Chair after 25 years with the Department. While his faculty, staff, peers, and patients are sad to see him leave, they are excited for his new opportunity. Dr. Schwenk was honored with several events prior to his departure including a health system-wide celebration from Dean Woolliscroft; a fire side chat with the the research faculty and staff; a party at Briarwood Family Medicine, where Dr. Schwenk practiced; and a meaningful farewell celebration put on by the entire Department. To say Dr. Schwenk was touched by these events is an understatement. He was honored, grateful and humbled by the outpouring of support for him.
We are pleased to announce the establishment of the new Department of Family Medicine Thomas L. Schwenk, M.D. Best Resident Teacher Award. This award honors Tom's passion and contributions in the area of teaching and mentoring throughout his long career with the Department. If you are interested in making a gift to the Schwenk Award, please know that only your name, not the gift amount, will be shared with Tom and that your gift is 100% tax deductible.
How to make a gift:
To make a gift to this endowment, please send your check, made out to Department of Family Medicine, noting Schwenk Award in the memo, to:
Amy St. Amour
Department of Family Medicine
1018 Fuller Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48105
To make a gift online via credit card, please visit the Department's online giving portal. Choose "I'd like to choose my area of support" and then click "Thomas L. Schwenk, M.D. Resident Teacher Award."
To see photos of these events, please view the slideshow below. Photo captions can be viewed by clicking on the photos.
August 17, 2011: New Family Medicine Scholarship Announced
Donald N. Fitch, M.D. has had a lifelong interest in medicine. Perhaps this was due to the multiple surgeries he required as a youngster coupled with the great personalities of his doctors. Don’s interest was heightened by spending parts of his summers serving first as an orderly and then as an extern at Sparrow Hospital in Lansing, MI. As he progressed through medical school, he developed a fascination with family medicine. He was particularly impressed with the training he received at the University of Michigan; his only regret was the lack of a Department of Family Medicine at that time.
However, having closely followed the development and progress of the Department, Don was enthusiastic about it’s efforts and it’s potential for the future of medicine. ”The need for well-trained family physicians is a certainty. Consequently, when the opportunity to fund a scholarship became evident, this seemed the ideal way for us to help out,” he noted.
Don spent the early years of his life in Lansing, MI before attending the University of Michigan for his undergraduate and medical education, graduating after seven years in 1959. Four of his fraternity brothers in his undergraduate fraternity went on to practice family medicine as well, including Tom Berglund, M.D. and Ray Hockstad, M.D. who became his eventual partner in practice. Dr. Berglund inspired Don to establish the Paddy and Donald N. Fitch, M.D. Family Medicine Scholarship, after he read about the meaningful way he was supporting family physicians from his alma mater. The fraternity was also responsible for setting Don up on a blind date with Paddy Cooper, from Kalamazoo, who became his wife and lifelong partner. They were married in 1957, the year Paddy graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in Speech Therapy. She taught for two years in Ypsilanti, MI and for one year in Minneapolis, MN, while Don completed medical school and internship.
Following the completion of his internship in Minneapolis and two years with the Indian Health Service in Montana and South Dakota, Don and his medical partner, Ray Hockstad, settled in Escanaba, MI. The beautiful, small town on Lake Michigan in the Upper Peninsula offered most of the recreational and cultural features they desired. They started a small clinic, which eventually became Doctors Park Family Physicians.
During this time, Don and Paddy had three boys: Bob (Arlington, TX); Russ (Hannover, ND); and Gordy (Traverse City, MI). The boys accompanied them on many sailing, skiing, backpacking, hiking, biking, and tennis expeditions. Their three sons brought them joy and Don and Paddy have been proud to watch their families, and now seven grandchildren, move through their own careers and personal lives.
Don and Paddy both have been involved in Boy Scouting for over 40 years, both serving as Scout leaders. All three sons are Eagle Scouts and Don has seen 43 Eagle Scouts graduate under his leadership as Scoutmaster. They both are very active in many aspects of their church and are charter members of the handbell choir, serving for more than 20 years.
In the 1980s, Paddy directed a successful campaign to bring a YMCA to the Escanaba area. Five years later, she chaired the capital campaign to raise the funds to build the area’s first public indoor swimming pool. Her reward has been the opportunity to teach eight water aerobic classes a week, plus multiple swim classes.
Don practiced family medicine for 49 years until health problems forced him to retire. During this time the continual gratitude of his patients proved to be his best reward and, upon his retirement, this was even more evident.
Don was active in the local Medical Society serving as president twice and delegate to MSMS for many years. He was a member of MSMS, MAFP, AAFP, the AMA, and was board-certified by the American Board of Family Medicine for the past 40 years. He also enjoyed participating in the AAFP Scientific Sessions as well as the annual 5K Fun Run in which he took first place in his age bracket five times.
Among the many awards he received were the 2009 Leader Among Peers Award from the Superior Health Partners of Marquette General, the 2011 Plessner Award from the MSMS, exemplifying a rural practitioner, and the 2011 Family Physician of the Year Award from the Michigan Academy of Family Practice.
“After a very fulfilling career and a wonderful life it is with great humility that we feel privileged to provide this scholarship to further the endeavor that has been our lifelong pursuit,” noted Don.
Unfortunately, shortly after seeking to establish this scholarship, Don lost his valiant battle against leukemia on August 8, 2011. Paddy and the entire Fitch family are proud to have this scholarship created in his memory and to honor the profession in which he was cited as the perfect role model.
If you are interested in making a gift to the Paddy and Donald N. Fitch, M.D. Scholarship Fund, please send your check, made out to Department of Family Medicine, noting Fitch Scholarship in the memo to:
Amy St. Amour
Department of Family Medicine
1018 Fuller Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48104
May 11, 2011: Scholarships and Awards Presented
The University of Michigan Department of Family Medicine presented its annual Scholarships and Awards on May 11, 2011. The nine scholarships, including the new Robert J. Fisher Family Medicine Scholarship, were presented by Thomas L. Schwenk, M.D., the George A. Dean, M.D. Chair of Family Medicine. There was also a special tribute to Dr. Thomas R. Berglund, M.D., (M.D. 1959) long-time friend and supporter of the department, who passed away in January.
To see additional photos from the event, please visit the Department's Facebook page.
Kenneth and Judy Betz Family Medicine Scholarship
Recipient: Jennifer M. Brewer
|Jennifer Brewer (center) celebrates with Judy and Ken Betz (right) along with Thomas L. Schwenk, M.D. and Anne Kittendorf, M.D. (left).|
A graduate of University of California Berkeley with a B.A. in neurobiology and english literature (dual degree with honors), Jennie did her M3 clerkship at Ypsilanti and her M4 elective in the Indian Health Service. She volunteered at both the Delonis Free Clinic and Medpals, and raised money to enable chronically and terminally ill children to attend local events. She participates in Medmarathoners, the U-M Triathalon Team and the Victor Vaughn Society, devoted to history and philosophy of medicine. Her dual passion for psychiatry and family medicine, led her to research with the U-M Molecular and Behavioral Neuroscience Institute. Jennie matched at University of California, San Diego.
“It is an honor to stand here and present this scholarship,” noted Ken Betz. “We did this because of our daughter, Anne’s [Kittendorf, M.D.), excellent experience at Michigan; it was the least we could do to say thank you.”
Anne completed her B.S. and her medical school training (M.D. 2001) at U-M and her residency (Residency 2004) with the Department and is currently a Department assistant professor.
Chelsea Community Family Medicine Scholarship
Recipient: Annelie Ott
Annelie Ott is congratulated on winning the Chelsea Community Family Medicine Scholarship by Thomas L. Schwenk, M.D., and James F. Peggs, M.D., (right) who worked with her during her clerkship in Chelsea.
Growing up in a small East German town, Annelie was drawn to her local family doctor, who often made house calls, and the world of medicine in general. A U-M graduate with a B.A. in psychology, Annelie is very active in the Family Medicine Interest Group. She attended the 2010 National Conference for Family Medicine Residents and Medical Students, organized shadowing experiences in family medicine for medical students and participated in Clinical Simulation Lab activities. She spent her third year family medicine clerkship working closely with, James F. Peggs, M.D., professor, and demonstrated impressive patient and clinical skills. We are thrilled that Annelie will begin her residency with us in Chelsea.
"Receiving this award made me feel welcomed and I very much look forward to joining this wonderful community of people. Thank you everyone," shared an enthusiastic Annelie.
Unfortunately, Arlene Howe, a dedicated friend and founder of this scholarship was recovering from surgery and unable to attend the ceremony. We wish her a speedy recovery.
Dale L. Williams, M.D. Family Medicine Scholarship and
AEI Sorority Family Medicine Scholarship
Recipient: Allison Wessel
Christel and Dale Williams, M.D., were honored to present their scholarship to Allison Wessel (center).
Peg Shearer, M.D., (right) is proud to honor outstanding students in family medicine. Here she congratulates winner, Allison Wessel.
A graduate of Johns Hopkins University with a B.A. in cognitive science (with honors), Allison worked in research in the Department of Psychology at University of Pennsylvania and the Laboratory for Child Development at Johns Hopkins prior to starting medical school. She co-founded Domestic Reach, exposing medical students to underserved communities and healthcare challenges in the U.S.; participated in MedArt, providing art therapy sessions for pediatric patients; and volunteered at Project H, a free clinic. Allison is a member of the Medical School Admissions Committee and co-authored a children’s book centered on characters with disabilities. We are pleased she will begin her residency with us in Chelsea.
“Receiving both the AEI Sorority and Dale Williams Scholarships has been an unexpected honor and privilege. It was wonderful meeting the donors of both scholarships - they are amazing role models and true pioneers in family medicine. The strong bonds and generosity of the U-M alumni community is something I have appreciated and admired, and I hope to be in a position to assist aspiring family medicine practitioners as they so graciously have,” Allison said.
Dr. Dale Willams, a retired family physician from Muskegon, and his wife, Christel, enjoyed the day’s celebration. “Every time we meet a student we are impressed with how bright and smart they are. We appreciate being here and it’s an honor to present our scholarship today,” commented Dr. Williams.
Marguerite (Peg) Shearer, M.D. (M.D. 1960), the designated trustee for the AEI Sorority Fund, noted, “It was very pertinent that the scholarship remained in the Department of Family Medicine – especially since the old AEI Sorority house is now home to the Department’s research and education faculty and staff.”
Jill and Thomas R. Berglund, M.D., Family Medicine Scholarship
Recipient: Kristine E. Smith
Dr. Berglund’s family including wife, Jill, children, Tracy and Tom Jr., daugher-in-law, Nancy, and seven grandchildren attended the ceremony and memorial tribute. The family was proud to carry on Dr. Berglund’s legacy and congratulate winner, Kristine Smith.
With a B.S. in biology from Gonzaga University, Tina did her M3 clerkship with Kristina M. Gallagher, M.D., assistant professor. Dr. Gallagher noted her enthusiasm for medicine, ability to reach out and connect with patients from all backgrounds and impressive clinical skills. Tina completed a research project in Ghana, becoming an undergraduate mentor for students traveling there. She participated in Galens Medical Society and helped raise money for children in Washtenaw County through Tag Days. Tina will begin her residency at Memorial Hospital, South Bend, Ind.
“It was truly an honor to receive the Berglund Scholarship. Learning of Dr. Berglund's legacy and commitment to family medicine was inspiring. It is also rewarding financially and emotionally to know there are role models who support my ambitions to become a family medicine physician,” noted Tina.
“My father made a commitment to give back to the medical field and when he retired, he wanted to give back to family medicine because he loved the specialty. We wish all the scholarship recipients the best and, as my dad would say, ‘Go Blue!’” said Tom Berglund Jr. during a warm and meaningful tribute to his father.
Vincent P. and Genevieve L. Burns Family Medicine Scholarship
Recipient: Katherine Christensen Belsky
Graduating from the University of California, Berkeley with a B.A. in molecular and cellular biology in 2006, Katie was an Alumni Scholar and Schwab-Rosenhouse Scholar. She received the U-M Medical School Dean’s Annual Scholarship, as well as the Dean's Commendation for Excellence in Clinical Skills and the Art of Medicine, and was recognized for her final project in Advanced Medical Therapeutics earning the N. Cary Engleberg Award. Katie volunteered at MedBuddies and participated in both the Galens Medical Society and Medical School Admissions Committee. Katie will begin her residency at Sutter Health in Sacramento, Calif.
“It is truly an honor to receive the Burns Family Medicine Scholarship. I am excited to be entering the field of family medicine, especially with the support of both the University of Michigan Family Medicine Department and alumni. I am very grateful to the Burns family,” noted Katie.
Robert J. Fisher, M.D. Family Medicine Scholarship
Recipient: Matthew R. Schlough
|Robert Fisher, M.D. (right), is proud to give back to his alma matter by establishing a scholarship. He celebrates with the first recipient of his scholarship, Matthew Schlough.|
Matt graduated from Dartmouth, summa cum laude, with a B.A in economics. Prior to imagining a career in medicine, Matt worked as an investment analyst for a private equity firm in New York City. Lack of satisfaction led him to join the Peace Corps in Mali, which sparked his interest in medicine and led him to medical school. Matt volunteered at Arbor Hospice; co-coordinated and volunteered with MedBuddies, where he supported, encouraged, and provided comfort to pediatric patients hospitalized for extended periods of time; taught sixth-graders about heart healthy lifestyles with Project Health Schools; and served on the Medical School Admissions Committee. Matt will begin his residency at Swedish First Hill, Seattle, Wash.
“I am very grateful to the Department of Family Medicine and, in particular, Dr. Fisher for his generosity. It was great to meet him and hear interesting stories about medical school and residency training from years past,” Matt said. “I'm really excited to be heading to Seattle for residency and this scholarship will help ease my transition to the Northwest and offset some of the significant cost of medical school.”
Dr. Fisher (M.D. 1960) commented, “I really appreciate what the U-M did for me and am pleased to present this scholarship to Matt.”
Family Medicine Senior Scholarship and Terence C. Davies, M.D. Award
Recipient: Christina W. Li
Winner of the Family Medicine Senior Scholarship and Terence C. Davies, M.D. Award, Christina Li is congratulated by Thomas L. Schwenk, M.D.
Christina graduated from U-M with a B.S. in biology (with honors) and academic minor in Asian languages and culture and was an Angell Scholar, as well as a Branstrom Freshman Prize winner. A leader of the Family Medicine Interest Group, she organized family medicine shadowing experiences for medical students. Christina volunteered in MedArt and the Cuban Medical Experience and is a member of the Galans Medical Society. A talented musician, she is a percussionist in the U-M Pops Orchestra and is involved in playing the carillons in the U-M bell towers. Christina will begin her residency with us in Ypsilanti.
The Family Medicine Senior Scholarship was established with the support of faculty, staff, alumni and friends of the Department. The meaningful Terence C. Davies, M.D. Award was named in honor of the Department’s founding chair.
"Both of these recognitions were entirely unexpected, and I am extremely grateful. It is such an honor to join the ranks of TCD Award recipients, as they are all physicians whom I look up to and deeply respect. The Family Medicine Senior Scholarship is a solid rock to stand on while bracing myself against the oncoming storm of student loan repayment," said Christina.
"Christina Li joins a long line of outstanding recipients of the these awards. She has a passion for Family Medicine and is dedicated to the principles set out by the Department and by Dr. Davies when the awards were established. We are proud of her achievements and pleased she is staying in the Department for her residency training," commented Dr. Schwenk.
Dr. Schwenk eloquently summarized the day, "There is a certain passion for what we, as family physicians, do and a passion to support students who chose this specialty. Today we saw this commitment by the family physicians, donors and alumni who support these scholarships. This is a very special place with very special people."
January 27, 2011: January 27, 2011: The Department is saddened to learn of the sudden death of Thomas R. Berglund, M.D. (M.D. 1959).
|Thomas R. Berglund, M.D., and his wife, Jill, celebrate the inaguration of their scholarship with recipient Tessa K. Dake, M.D., (center) at the Department's scholarship presentation ceremony in 2009.|
Dr. Berglund was a University of Michigan medical school graduate and a family physician who practiced in the Kalamazoo area most of his life. He suffered a heart attack while skiing with his wife, Jill, in Snowmass, CO last week.
The Berglunds have been very generous donors of the U-M Department of Family Medicine. In 2009, they established a scholarship fund to support medical student graduates who have been accepted into a residency in family medicine. Jill and the family have requested that, in lieu of flowers, any donations be given to this fund.
Memorial donations can be made online on our Gifts page or sent to U-M Department of Family Medicine, 1018 Fuller Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48104-1213.
We thank Dr. Berglund for his commitment to family medicine and the Department and send our deepest sympathies to his family and friends.
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