Alumni Association Award Winners
2022 Alumni Association Award Recipients
Congratulations to the recipients of the 2022 Alumni Association Awards. They were honored at a virtual ceremony on June 4.
Boots Cooper, MD, Service Award – Marylou Buyse, MD, MCP '70
Marylou Buyse has served as Neighborhood Health Plan of Rhode
Island’s chief medical officer since December 2018, bringing with
her a deep expertise in care management redesign, focused on
providing members in government programs with comprehensive,
coordinated care management. She has extensive experience in
population health, quality, utilization management and medical
policy development. Buyse has served in various clinical leadership
roles at health plans, including Highmark, United Healthcare of
New England and Scott & White Health Plan of Texas.
\She has served on medical faculties including
University of Southern California, Tufts University School of
Medicine, Boston University and Harvard University. She also
served as clinical professor at the Boston University School of Public
Health. She was the president of the Massachusetts Medical
Society and CEO of the Massachusetts Association of Health
Plans. She is currently on the board of Meals on Wheels RI.
Buyse has served on various boards, committees and commissions
including the Massachusetts Health Council, Massachusetts Cost
and Quality Council, Commission to End Cervical Cancer and the
Massachusetts Health Data Consortium. She also has been affiliated
with many professional organizations spanning over 20 years,
including American Medical Women’s Association, Massachusetts
Board of Registration in Medicine, Massachusetts Medical Society
where she was president from 1999-2000, Rhode Island’s American
Cancer Society and Rhode Island’s American Heart Association.
Buyse is also a member of Leadership Rhode Island Class of 2000.
She holds a Bachelor of Arts from Hunter College, a Master of
Science from University of Wisconsin in preventative health and
administrative medicine, and a medical degree from Drexel
University. She did her residency and a fellowship at LAC-USC
Medical Center in Los Angeles and is board certified in pediatrics,
medical genetics and medical management.
As chief medical officer, Buyse provides clinical leadership for
all medical management and evaluation and improvement. In
addition, she oversees pharmacy and behavioral health service
operations as well as the Department of Primary Care, which
Boots Cooper, MD, Service Award – Loretta Christensen, MD, HU '84
Loretta Christensen, an enrolled member of the Navajo Tribe,
serves as the chief medical officer of the Indian Health Service.
The IHS, an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and
Human Services, is the principal federal health care provider for
American Indians and Alaska Natives. As the chief medical officer,
Christensen is IHS’s lead expert on medical and public health
topics, giving technical consultation and guidance to the IHS Office
of the Director and IHS staff throughout the country on American
Indian and Alaska Native health care policies and issues. She
provides national leadership for clinical and community-based
health programs of the agency and serves as the primary liaison
and advocate for IHS health professionals.
Emerging Leader Award – Rita Alvarez, MD '10
Born in Guatemala, Rita Alvarez migrated with her family to New York City during the
escalating turmoil of her country’s civil war. She was educated
by the NYC public school system including Hunter College
for undergraduate studies. She took two years to work for the
American Red Cross, after which she was fortunate to attend Drexel
University College of Medicine.
Her best memories at Drexel include the Chinatown Clinic and the
small group classes in PBL. She continued her pediatric training at
SUNY Downstate in Brooklyn, and pediatric critical care fellowship
in University of Colorado/Children’s Hospital of Colorado. She
was an assistant professor at the Medical College of Wisconsin/Children’s Wisconsin where she continued clinical research in
pediatric ICU delirium and was part of the new NeuroICU group.
She worked for the University of New Mexico PICU for one year
and learned major life lessons in the time of COVID.
Alvarez’s first passion was always the underserved who,
throughout her career, she’s had the opportunity to serve in different
forms. Most recently she completed her second volunteer trip to
care for post-cardiac surgery children in developing nations and support
education for local nurses, RTs and intensivists. She’s currently
working as a locums provider at St. Joseph’s Providence in Eureka,
California, and Valley Children’s ED in Fresno, California.
She is inspired and uplifted by Supreme Court Nominee Judge
Ketanji Brown Jackson, who said, “Seeing me move to the Supreme
Court, they will know you don’t have to be perfect in your career
trajectory, you can still end up doing what you want to do.”
Alvarez’s career path has not been traditional, but she is blessed to
practice what she loves today.
Emerging Leader Award – Kraftin E. Schreyer, MD '13
Kraftin E. Schreyer is an attending physician and associate
professor of emergency medicine at the Lewis Katz School of
Medicine at Temple University. She received her medical degree
from Drexel University College of Medicine and completed her
residency training at Temple University Hospital where she served
as a chief resident in her final year. She is currently the medical
director of capacity management for the Temple University
Health System, and also continues to serve as the director of
clinical operations for the Temple University Hospital Episcopal
Campus Emergency Department, the assistant director of
clinical operations for Temple University Hospital Main Campus
Emergency Department, the director of the Emergency Medicine
Administrative Fellowship at Temple University Hospital, and
the quality officer for the Department of Emergency Medicine.
Schreyer additionally chairs the Operations Management
Committee and heads the Women in Emergency Medicine
Leadership Working Group for the American Academy of
She holds a certification in medical quality and a Master of
Business Administration with a concentration in health care
management from the Fox School of Business at Temple
University. Schreyer has over 30 peer-reviewed publications
and has lectured on a local, regional and national level. Her
clinical interests are in emergency medicine administration and
operations, quality and performance improvement.
She is particularly interested in the intersections between
emergency department operations, resident education and
community engagement. She currently residents in New Jersey
with her husband Matt and their two very large puppies.
Graduate Citation Award – Early Career or Young Investigator – Vanessa S. Boyce, PhD '07
Vanessa Boyce received her master’s degree in biology from
Duquesne University and doctoral degree in neuroscience from
Drexel University College of Medicine. She completed postdoctoral
research at the State University of New York at Stony Brook and
was also an associate of the International Research Consortium on
Spinal Cord Injury of the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation
during that period. Her research focused on investigating the
mechanisms by which neurotrophic factors, specifically brain
derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and neurotrophin 3 (NT-
3), promote the restoration of hind-limb locomotor function in
animal models of paraplegia following spinal cord injury. She
is currently a scientific review officer (SRO) at the Center for
Scientific Review (CSR) where she runs the Molecular and Cellular
Neuropharmacology Study Section. She is also the new SRO
training and development coordinator at CSR.
Graduate Citation Award – Early Career or Young Investigator – Heather J. Painter, PhD '08
Heather J. Painter, is a principal investigator in the Laboratory of
Mucosal Pathogens and Cellular Immunology. Painter received
her PhD in molecular and cell biology and genetics from Drexel
University College of Medicine. After completing her postdoctoral
research at Princeton University and Pennsylvania State University,
she joined the Division of Bacterial, Parasitic and Allergenic
Products, Office of Vaccines Research and Review, at Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research in
2019. Her laboratory evaluates the feasibility and new approaches
for creation of anti-malaria vaccines by identifying the molecular
processes involved in parasite development, creation of novel
assays to detect the developing parasite in human populations
and defining biomarkers of infection and immunity and creation of
appropriate assays, including nascent transcriptome analysis.
Biomedical Sciences Graduate Recognition Award – Marian Baldini, MS, HU '77
Marian Baldini is the CEO and president of KenCrest, a human
services and early learning provider throughout Pennsylvania,
Connecticut and Delaware, that serves over 12,500 people
annually. She is an unwavering advocate for the equality and
inclusion of people with disabilities, as well as access to early
education for all. Baldini has over 40 years of leadership in
executive planning, administration, academia and operational
oversight. She began her career as a direct support professional
in the 1970s at the same agency where she now serves as CEO.
Throughout her journey she has never lost sight of her “why,”
and has inspired a shared vision among many in the intellectual and developmental disabilities industry
for what true inclusion looks like for people with intellectual and
developmental disabilities. Baldini has testified at legislative
hearings on the closures of institutions, rallied for the certification
of direct care workers and published numerous op-eds on
innovative service models to offset the nation-wide direct support professional crisis.
She has served in executive director, vice president and
COO positions for Elwyn, Northwestern Human Services (now
Merakey) and JEVS Human Services and has worked as an
adjunct professor for Widener University’s School of Business.
She has been recognized by Philadelphia Business Journal as
one the Most Admired CEOs (2019) in the region, as well as
a Woman of Distinction (2015). She was named one of Main
Line Today’s Power Women in 2021 and was most recently
recognized by Lutheran Services of America (LSA) for her
leadership as their first ever Paragon Award recipient in 2022.
Baldini is a graduate of Temple University, Widener University
and Drexel University and resides in Media, Pennsylvania, with
her husband Larry, and rescue pup, Millie.
HU Distinguished Graduate Award – Jeffrey Carson, MD, HU '77
Jeffrey Carson graduated from Hahnemann Medical College in
1977 and was an internal medicine resident and chief resident at
Hahnemann from 1977-1980. He obtained his research training at
the University of Pennsylvania as a Henry J. Kaiser Fellow and at
the University of Oxford, England, as Fogarty Senior International
Fellow. He was the founding chief of the Division of General
Internal Medicine at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical
School. In 2014, he was appointed as one of the two inaugural
provosts of Rutgers Biomedical Health Sciences. He is also the
Richard C. Reynolds, MD, Chair in General Internal Medicine and
distinguished professor of medicine.
Carson is an active clinician and has recognized by the annual
“best” doctor list since 1998. He was member and chair of the
Clinical Trials Review Committee at NHLBI. The focus of his research is determining the indications for red
blood cell blood (RBC) transfusion. His landmark trial evaluating
RBC transfusion demonstrated the safety in using fewer transfusions
in elderly patients was published in the New England Journal of
Medicine and the Lancet. Other notable publications include clinical
guidelines published in JAMA, review in UpToDate, and an invited
review in the New England Journal of Medicine. His research has
influenced the worldwide reduction of red blood cell transfusions.
Carson is currently the study chair of the NIH supported trial called
MINT that is evaluating transfusion thresholds in 3,500 patients with
acute myocardial infarction conducted worldwide in over 130 centers.
His research has been recognized by numerous local and national
honors including the American Association of Physicians, National
Heart Lung Blood Institutes, American Association of Blood Banks and American College of
WMC/MCP Distinguished Graduate Award – Nancy Stiles Curry, MD, WMC/MCP '72
Nancy Stiles Curry was valedictorian of her high school class,
attended the University of Rochester and was accepted into
Woman’s Medical College of Pennsylvania class of 1972. She and her
husband Bob married after her first year (celebrating 53 years in
August). She stayed at WMC for one year of internship and one
year of residency in internal medicine before moving back to her
hometown, Rochester, New York. After the birth of her first son,
Scott, she took a 3/4 time job at a community health center for one and a half years. Changing course, she then completed a radiology residency at
the University of Rochester, becoming their first female chief resident. Her favorite
rotations were in gastrointestinal and genitourinary subspecialties, along with an interest
in percutaneous procedures and abdominal CT. There followed a
fellowship year in genitourinary imaging and intervention at UCLA.
Subsequently, Curry joined the faculty of the Medical University
of South Carolina (MUSC), becoming the only fellowship-trained
uroradiologist in South Carolina. In 1982 and 1984, her children Ryan
and Laurel were born. She reached tenured full professor with
a secondary appointment in urology and served as the first female
president of the South Carolina Radiologic Society and the second female president
of the National Society of Uroradiology.
In her late 40s, Curry took
up competitive running, setting South Carolina state age group records in
5K, 10K and 12K distances. Her son Scott is now an infectious disease specialist at
MUSC, raising two sons with his husband Bill, a musician; Ryan
works as an engineer in Atlanta and Laurel has a doctoral degree
in public health and is raising her daughter with husband Daniel,
a lawyer, in Arlington, Virginia. Curry retired from MUSC as
professor emerita in 2015.
Outstanding Medical Graduate Award – Ryan K. Lee, MD, MCPHU '00
Ryan K. Lee is associate professor at the Sidney Kimmel Medical
College at Thomas Jefferson University. He is the chair of the
Department of Radiology at Einstein Healthcare Network. His areas
of expertise include radiation management in imaging, radiology
clinical decision support and MRI safety. He is known for his work
not only in CT radiation dose reduction, but also in the reduction
of variance in radiation dose. An authority on quality in radiology,
he serves on several quality and safety committees in the Einstein
Lee has expertise in hospital and physician reimbursement, and
as chair of the Medicine Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) Committee at Einstein is responsible for
developing strategies in the merit-based incentive payment systems and alternative payment models environment. He has
extensive experience in the implementation of radiology clinical
decision support and has given numerous lectures regarding
its benefits. He is a member of the American College of Radiology (ACR) Appropriateness Criteria
Neurological Imaging Subcommittee, ACR MACRA Committee,
ACR Economics Subcommittee on Neuroradiology, and ACR General, Small, Emergency and/or Rural
Quality and Safety Committee. He serves on the board for the
Pennsylvania Radiological Society and the Philadelphia Roentgen
Lee graduated from Cornell University with a Bachelor of Arts
and attained his medical degree at Drexel University College of
Medicine. He completed his residency in diagnostic radiology at
the University of Rochester and fellowship in neuroradiology at the
University of Pennsylvania.
He is a diplomate of the American Board of Radiology and has a
certificate of added qualification in neuroradiology. He holds a
Master of Business Administration degree from the Simon School at
the University of Rochester.
Outstanding Biomedical Sciences Graduate Award – Anthony J. Piraino, MS, HU '74, PhD, HU '76, MD, HU '84
Anthony J. Piraino is a medical educator and clinical researcher
who has spent over 35 years in academic medicine and the
pharmaceutical industry. Piraino is a nationally recognized
authority in the field of clinical pharmacology and is board certified
in this specialty.
He began his career at MCP, where he achieved the rank of
professor of medicine and pharmacology and was named chief
of the Division of Clinical Pharmacology in the Department of
Medicine. Piraino also chaired MCP’s Institutional Review Board
for five years. He later became senior associate dean for clinical
research, associate provost and executive director of clinical
research at the merged MCP–Hahnemann School of Medicine,
most recently holding the rank of clinical professor of medicine
and pharmacology. He won the coveted Golden Apple Award for
teaching excellence and was later appointed adjunct professor
of pharmacology at the Temple University School of Medicine.
Piraino also managed two clinical research units and has served as
principal or co-investigator for over 100 Phase I-IIa clinical drug
After joining industry full-time, he became senior director of
clinical research and medical affairs for AstraZeneca. Here,
he created and led a global team responsible for training AZ’s
medical professionals, delivering face-to-face learning programs
to over 4,500 physicians and scientists on four continents. In
this role Piraino also led the medical review of promotional
materials and advertising for over 20 marketed products in
multiple therapeutic areas, notably Crestor, Nexium, Pulmicort
An undergraduate of St. Joseph’s University, Piraino received his
MS, MD and PhD degrees from Hahnemann. He has authored
52 publications and 40 abstracts, and has delivered over 60
presentations nationally and internationally. He is a fellow of the
American College of Physicians (ACP) and a past fellow and
Board of Regents officer for the American College of Clinical
Pharmacology. Piraino has taught on the national faculties of the
ACP and the Pharmaceutical Education and Research Institute
(PERI), serving on its Board of Directors, its Curriculum Committee,
as a course director and as co-chair of PERI’s Continuing Medical
Education Committee. He has also served on the editorial boards
of several peer-reviewed journals including the Journal of Clinical
Pharmacology and the American Journal of Therapeutics.
Special Recognition Award – Howard Miller, MD, HU '74
Born and raised in Philadelphia, Howard Miller attended Central High School and Franklin
and Marshall College. He was admitted to Hahnemann in 1970 after
three years of college, without a bachelor’s degree, at the age of 19. Miller stayed
at Hahnemann for his internal medicine residency and then joined
the faculty in 1977 for a career as a clinician educator in the
Department of Medicine.
Miller was permanently on the teaching
service for the next 40 years at Hahnemann without a single
break. He ran the residency program in internal medicine on
three separate occasions for over 12 years. He was the medical
director of the Physician Assistant program.
He practiced general
internal medicine full time for over 40 years. Miller ran the clinical
practice plan for Drexel University as vice dean for clinical affairs
and for 10 years was executive vice chair of the Department
of Medicine at Drexel University College of Medicine. He continues to be
editor-in-chief of Postgraduate Medicine Journal published in
Miller opened the Convenient Care Center for Drexel, the
first of its type in the country associated with a medical school. It
won an award from Philadelphia Magazine as the best convenient
care center in the city.
He has been happily married to Mauree for 47 years and is the father
of Cory and Tracy, and grandfather to lovely Avery and Emilia.
Lifetime Achievement Award – Frances Ruth Batzer, MD, WMC '72, MBE
Taking care of women with all the reproductive ramifications
clearly became Frances Batzer’s first priority as she was deciding
on a career path. This was before the crucial Roe vs. Wade 1973
decision, when only New York state allowed comprehensive
reproductive care for women that included abortion.
Batzer completed a residency in obstetrics and gynecology. She has been practicing
and boarded in the specialty of reproductive endocrinology from
the time the fellowship was created, becoming one of the first
women in the field. She has participated in residency and medical
student education throughout her career at both Pennsylvania
Hospital and Thomas Jefferson University, becoming clinical
professor of obstetrics and gynecology.
The first baby conceived via in vitro fertilization was born in the U.S. in
1982, and her practice had its first baby born shortly thereafter
in 1984. Her practice pioneered many advances in the world of
assisted reproduction including gamete intra-fallopian tube transfer
(GIFT), intra-cytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), gestational carrier
and more. She also advanced the use of vaginal sonography in
evaluation of early pregnancy and pelvic pathology.
Batzer received a master’s in bioethics when Arthur Caplan, PhD,
opened a program at the University of Pennsylvania. She served
as chair of the Ethics Committee at Thomas Jefferson as well as on
the Ethics Committee of her professional organization, the American
Society of Reproductive Medicine.
Batzer pioneered the use of minimally invasive gynecologic surgery
in Philadelphia. She was one of the first two women on the board
of the American Association of Gynecological Laparoscopy, and
she has received many awards including the Kate Hurd Mead
Fellowship Award from MCP.
She served as head of the Medical Committee for Planned
Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania (PPSP) for many years
and she was honored by PPSP for this leadership. She also served
on the Medical Committee for national Planned Parenthood,
heading the contraception and endocrine sections.
Batzer’s passion for fine arts, and specifically Matisse, led to her
and her husband collecting all the books illustrated by Matisse. The
collection was donated to the Morgan Library in New York City.
One of her greatest pleasures was being asked to help her
daughter and friends study for their written and oral obstetrics and
gynecology boards. Her daughter is now the fourth generation
of obstetrician-gynecologist in her family, practicing frontline at
Pennsylvania Hospital throughout the pandemic. Batzer continues to
practice telemedicine during this pandemic.
Batzer remains a passionate reproductive freedoms advocate. She
enjoys her other time with her three children, their families and six
grandchildren all living in Philadelphia!
Lifetime Achievement Award – Helen Meeks Horstmann, MD, WMC/MCP '72
Helen Meeks Horstmann has been a pioneer for women in the
field of orthopaedic surgery. She was the first woman resident
in orthopaedic surgery at Thomas Jefferson University. As a
fellow at DuPont Institute, now Nemours, she started into a
subspecialty of cerebral palsy management, and developed
into one of the nation’s leading voices in that field. As such, she
served as president of the American Academy for Cerebral Palsy
and Developmental Medicine. She also co-wrote a definitive
text on cerebral palsy with Eugene Bleck entitled Orthopaedic
Management in Cerebral Palsy. She has served on medical
editorial boards including Developmental Medicine and Child
Neurology and Foot and Ankle International. She was instrumental
in the creation of the national women’s orthopaedic society, the
Ruth Jackson Orthopaedic Society, and was its president as well
as an officer in multiple positions.
She was an attending orthopaedic surgeon at Children’s Hospital
of Philadelphia for most of her career and was recognized as a
national leader in pediatric orthopaedics. In addition, she was a
recognized authority on post-polio syndrome in adults. She was an
attending surgeon at the Medical College of Pennsylvania Hospital
and took trauma call there for more than 20 years.
Throughout her career she has been an educator and mentor of
medical students, surgical and orthopaedic residents and especially
young women at both Drexel University College of Medicine and
the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.
She has served the community in multiple board positions including
at Rosemont College, Villanova University and the Pennsylvania
Horticultural Society. She is the current chair of the Philadelphia
Flower Show. She and her husband John are the parents of six
daughters and soon-to-be 12 grandchildren.
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