Dean's Weekly Message

May 11, 2015


Dear colleague: 

On Sunday, May 3, the UCHealth Eye Center and Rocky Mountain Lions Eye Institute celebrated the opening of its expanded center on the Anschutz Medical Campus with a reception, dinner and program that featured guest speakers Jeff George, global head of Alcon, and George Karl, former NBA Coach, who was named Coach of the Year in 2012-13 while leading the Denver Nuggets. The $30 million expansion increases the size of the center to 135,000 square feet and establishes it as one of the largest eye care facilities in the United States. The center treats more than 100,000 patients per year and now has its own diagnostic center and three operating rooms reserved for eye surgery. In addition, the center houses space for research. University of Colorado Health produced an outstanding video that highlights the tremendous impact of the physicians, scientists and staff in our Department of Ophthalmology.

The American Thoracic Society (ATS) International Conference will be in Denver this upcoming weekend and one of the highlights will be the Breathing for Life Award on Saturday, May 16, recognizing the School of Medicine’s Marvin Schwarz, MD, who is one of the world’s preeminent experts on pulmonary fibrosis. Marvin is the James C. Campbell Professor of Pulmonary Medicine in the Department of Medicine and he served from 1985 to 2004 as head of the Division of Pulmonary Sciences and Critical Care Medicine and as director of the pulmonary fellowship training program from 1987 to 2010. As the ATS notes, his level of expertise has become an informal event at the ATS Fellows Case Conference, with many fellows and seasoned clinicians attempting, usually unsuccessfully, to “Stump Marvin Schwarz” with a difficult case. Congratulations to Marvin on this well-deserved award.

The Department of Pediatrics and Children’s Hospital Colorado are holding a retirement reception to honor Roger Hollister, MD, professor of pediatrics, as he concludes 41 years of service to Children’s in pediatric rheumatology. The reception will be Friday, June 5, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., in the Mt. Yale Conference Room at Children’s Hospital Colorado.  RSVPs by Tuesday, May 19, are requested. Please RSVP to

The Faculty Senate has announced its call for nominations for the School of Medicine Faculty Professionalism Award. The award recognizes a full-time faculty member who has served as a role model for professionalism, which covers civil and courteous behavior; respect for teachers, students, supporting staff and colleagues; service to the community; dedication to lifelong learning; and, for clinicians, empathy, altruism, compassion and other attitudes and behaviors which represent the core traditions of the profession of medicine. The award recipient will be honored at the School of Medicine Matriculation Ceremony in August and the person’s name will be displayed on a permanent plaque in the School of Medicine.  A nomination packet may be submitted by any student, resident, faculty member or other member of the School of Medicine or University of Colorado Denver community. Nomination forms are available online. All materials are due by 5 p.m. Friday, May 29, to

The School of Medicine’s Foundations of Doctoring program and the Office of Community-Based Medical Education held their annual award banquet last week to bestow the Golden Stethoscope awards. Medical students show their gratitude for the time and dedication of their preceptors with these awards. We thank the 11 honorees and all of the preceptors who so generously help train the next generation of physicians. The Golden Stethoscope Awardees in 2015 are:

  • Emergency Medicine - Tracy Cushing, MD, MPH
  • Family Medicine - Suzanne C. Nash, MD ’89
  • Internal Medicine Preceptor - Christopher Courtney, MD
  • OB/GYN - Asela Russell, MD
  • Patient/Physician Communication Skills - David Burrows, MD
  • Pediatric Preceptor - Margarita Guarin, MD
  • Physical Exam Skills - Denise Damek, MD
  • Role Model - Dennis Lyu, MD
  • Best Specialty Preceptor - Patrick Fernandez, MD
  • Kris Wenzel Award - Steven Lowenstein, MD, MPH
  • Foundations of Doctoring Faculty Choice Award - Ben Honigman, MD

Regina Richards, MSW, director of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, is featured in a Philanthropy at Workarticle posted recently on the CU Foundation website. Regina established a memorial fund to support research at the CU Cancer Center after her husband, Michael, passed away in 2014. Such memorial funds are a lasting tribute to the memories of loved ones and are inspiration to those of us on the Anschutz Medical Campus who provide the best care and who are working always to find ways to improve treatment.

The University of Colorado Center for Bioethics and Humanities (CBH) is seeking to appoint a medical school representative to a new Academic Leadership Council that will boost the center’s program integration and impact on the Anschutz Medical Campus. The deans of the six schools/colleges on our campus are working with Matthew Wynia, MD, MPH, the center’s director, to establish the CBH Academic Leadership Council. Each school will have one faculty member in good standing appointed at 0.2 FTE. The council’s charge is to integrate and expand CBH offerings on campus, in the University and into the community. The School of Medicine’s representative on the council will be appointed by the Dean in consultation with Matthew. The council member is responsible for communicating with department and/or division leadership and others to obtain the necessary approvals to work as a 0.2 FTE member of the council. For more information or to apply with a CV and a cover letter, contact


Have a good week,

John J. Reilly, Jr., MD

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


The Dean’s weekly message is an email news bulletin from John J. Reilly, Jr., MD, Dean of the CU School of Medicine, that is distributed to inform University of Colorado School of Medicine faculty members, staff, students and others about issues pertaining to the School’s mission of education, research, clinical care and community service.  See the UCH-Insider →


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