December People Notes

Linda Abriola, dean of the School of Engineering, gave a talk on “Cleanup of Contaminated Groundwater—What Can We Hope to Achieve and Is It Worth the Investment?” at Tufts on November 10 in an event sponsored by the Tufts Institute for Lifelong Learning and the School of Engineering.

Lawrence S. Bacow, president of Tufts, and Richard Sandor, chief executive officer of the Chicago Climate Exchange, participated in a panel moderated by Gilbert Metcalf, professor of economics, October 19 at the Fletcher School. They were joined by Randall Kroszner, University of Chicago economics professor and former member of the Council of Economic Advisors that helped draft the Clear Skies Initiative. The panel discussion explored the role of markets in addressing climate change and air pollution.

Simon Barquera-Cervera, a doctoral student at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, and Margarite Safdie, N98, are the recipients of the 2003 Fred L. Soper Award for their article, “The Epidemiological and Nutritional Transition in Mexico: Rapid Increase of Non-communicable Chronic Diseases and Obesity,” which was published in Public Health Nutrition in 2002. The Fred L. Soper Award for Excellence in Health Literature recognizes “significant contributions to the scientific literature reflecting health advances in the region of Americas.”

Sophie Bell, Lauren Byler, Marta Paczynska, Ashley Shelden and Jeffrey Vanderveen, graduate students in English, joined students from the University of Ottawa, McMaster University, Miami University, Binghamton University, Brandeis University, the University of Massachusetts at Boston and Harvard University in serving as panelists for Tufts’ 15th annual English Graduate Student Conference October 17 in the Coolidge Room of Ballou Hall. This year’s conference, “The Influence of Anxiety,” featured Ellis Hanson of Cornell University, who spoke on “Teaching Shame.” A two-time winner of the Crompton-Noll Award, Hanson has received praise for his definitive contributions to the fields of gay and lesbian studies and film and literary theory. The papers presented at the conference sparked discussions of the anxieties produced around issues of race, sexuality, subject formation, pedagogy and gender. The annual conference is organized entirely by graduate students.

Dr. Doug Brugge, assistant professor of family medicine and community health and director of the Health Careers Opportunity Program, has received renewed funding for the program—$3.1 million for three years from the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration. The program, run in cooperation with the Boston public schools and the University of Massachusetts at Boston, encourages middle school students to attend college.

Ed Budd, A55, J80P, J86P, concluded his term on the Tufts University Board of Trustees in November. He served with distinction as chairman of both the Administration and Finance and Audit committees and as a member of the Executive Committee. He also chaired the Board of Overseers to the Gerald J. and Dorothy R. Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy. Budd recently completed a highly successful 40-year career with Travelers Corp., one of the world’s largest financial services companies, as its CEO and chairman of the board.

Rocky Carzo, director of athletics emeritus, was inducted into the Massachusetts chapter of the National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame at ceremonies in Randolph, Mass., on November 21. Toastmaster for the evening was radio personality Ron Della Chiesa. This year’s other inductees were Bobby Leo, who played football for Harvard and in the NFL; Armond Colombo, an outstanding high school coach from Brockton; and Red Sox radio broadcast team Joe Castiglione and Jerry Trupiano. The chapter also honored Pamela Donnaruma, publisher of the Post-Gazette, as Woman of the Year for her service to the Italian American community as publisher of the Boston-based newspaper.

Eric C. Chaisson, director of the Wright Center for Science Education at Tufts, says the center was awarded a $1.6 million grant extension from the Smithsonian as part of its ongoing partnership with NASA’s Chandra X-Ray Observatory Center in Cambridge. The center, including Dana Berry and April Hobart in Tufts’ Science Visualization Lab, has produced broadcast-quality video and imagery of key findings from this NASA mission. Under the direction of Senior Wright Fellow Donna Young, the Wright Center will continue its series of teacher workshops and educational product development, including the construction of a suite of instructional modules that can be used by college-level and pre-college teachers to disseminate the main science findings of this flagship X-ray mission. Currently in its 10th year, the Wright Center has raised nearly $11 million for Tufts.

Michael Dansinger, a clinical research student in the Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences, has found that four popular diets appear to lower the risk of heart disease fairly equally. He spoke on November 9 at a meeting of the American Heart Association, describing a study he worked on with Dr. Ernst Schaefer, senior scientist in the Lipid Metabolism Laboratory at the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging (HNRCA) at Tufts. They compared Weight Watchers, the high-fat Atkins diet, the low-fat Ornish diet and the high-protein/moderate-carb Zone diet. Participants who stayed on the prescribed diet for a year lost an average of 10 to 12 pounds or five to 15 percent of their body fat. All diets affected cholesterol levels but differently. “The Ornish diet (low-fat vegetarian) was best for lowering the bad LDL cholesterol, while other diets were better at raising the good HDL cholesterol,” Dansinger said.

Dr. Bess Dawson-Hughes, director of the Bone Metabolism Laboratory at the HNRCA, updated physicians on the diagnosis and treatment of osteoporosis at Grand Rounds presentations at the VA Hospital in Tampa, Fla., May 8-9, the Marlboro Hospital in Marlboro, Mass., on June 19, Carney Hospital in Boston on September 3 and the North Shore Medical Center on Long Island on September 10. She discussed the diagnosis and treatment of osteoporosis at the Fifth International Symposium on Nutritional Aspects of Osteoporosis in Lausanne, Switzerland, last May and on whether calcium influences the impact of protein on the skeleton at the International Bone and Mineral Society/Japan Society of Bone and Mineral Research’s 2003 conference June 3-7 in Osaka, Japan. Dawson-Hughes gave a presentation on vitamin D intake at the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research conference in Minneapolis in September.

John DiBiaggio, president emeritus of Tufts, has been appointed to the Board of Trustees of the University of Massachusetts by Gov. Mitt Romney for a five-year term.

Deborah Digges, professor of English, has a poem coming out in The New Yorker titled “Seersucker Suit.” It is part of her collection Trapeze, which will be published by Alfred A. Knopf in March 2004.

Marilyn Ducksworth, J78, G79, concluded her term on the Tufts University Board of Trustees in November. She was one of the architects of the plan to make Tufts’ global recognition commensurate with its academic standing. Currently senior vice president, associate publisher and executive director of Penguin Putnam Inc., Ducksworth has created and directed nearly 200 best-selling author campaigns, including those of Tom Clancy. Her trustee service included 10 years on the Administration and Finance Committee.

Johanna Dwyer, professor at the Friedman School, and her colleagues have found that U.S. children ages four months to two years have diets that could cause health problems later in life. They reported their findings at the annual meeting of the American Dietetic Association in October. The researchers found that the eating habits of young children often mirror those of older children, replete with sweets, French fries and soft drinks. Their research found that on one day, nearly a third of the 3,000 children studied did not eat a single fruit or vegetable, and of those kids ages 19 months to two years, 20 percent ate French fries every day. The Tufts researchers also expressed concern about the quantity of food consumed: The median intake of calories for children between ages 1 and 2 exceeded the daily recommended requirements by nearly 30 percent.

Ann Easterbrooks has been promoted to professor of child development by the university’s Board of Trustees. She has been a faculty member since 1985.

David Elkind, professor of child development, is the recipient of the prestigious Dale Richmond Award, sponsored by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Foundation for Child Development. The Richmond Award recognizes achievement in the field of child development and is generally awarded to a non-physician educator. It was established to honor Dr. Julius Richmond, former U.S. surgeon general and founder of the Head Start program. Previous recipients have been Marion Wright Edelman, founder of the Children’s Defense Fund; Robert Coles, a child psychiatrist, professor at Harvard University and the author of more than 50 books; and Jerome Kagan, a developmental psychologist and the Daniel and Amy Starch Research Professor of Psychology Emeritus at Harvard.

Dr. Lisa Freeman, J86, V91, N96, associate professor of clinical sciences at the School of Veterinary Medicine, is the co-recipient of the annual American College of Veterinary Emergency Medicine and Critical Care Scientific Achievement Award. She shares the award with another Tufts alumna, Dr. Kathryn Michel, V83, who is on the faculty at the University of Pennsylvania. The award recognized the duo for their outstanding contributions to clinical nutrition through research, teaching, publishing and other scholarly activities. In addition, Dr. Soren Boysen, who completed Tufts’ residency in emergency medicine and critical care last summer, was selected to receive the organization’s annual Resident Award based on the significance of the research covered in his abstract, “Focused Abdominal Sonogram of Trauma in 100 Dogs.”

James M. Glaser, associate professor of political science and dean of undergraduate education, published an article, “Social Context and Inter-Group Political Attitudes: Experiments in Group Conflict Theory,” in the October issue of the British Journal of Political Science.

Andrew Greenberg, assistant professor of nutrition and director of the Obesity and Metabolism Research Program at the HNRCA, and his collaborators published “TNF-alpha Induction of Lipolysis Is Mediated through Activation of the Extracellular Signal-related Kinase in 3T3-L1 Adipocytes” in the Journal of Cell Biochemistry (2003, 89: 1077-1086) and “Perilipin Expression in Human Adipose Tissues: Effects of Severe Obesity and Gender” in the Journal of Obesity Research (2003, 11: 930-936).

David Valdes Greenwood, lecturer in English, had the first public reading of his play “Paradise of Earthworms” in New York at the Ensemble Studio Theatre. Productions of his play “Brave Navigator” were staged in November in Tennessee. Last summer he started a monthly column of theater interviews, titled “Scene Stealers,” for Stuff@Night, and he has begun to write film, television and theater criticism for Bay Windows.

Dr. David Harte, A74, D78, and Dr. David Tesini, D75, organized a child identification project November 15 at all the Boston police stations. Tesini invented the “tooth print” as a means of identifying lost children. Harte has had a longstanding interest in the issue and notes that currently, there are at least 77 missing children in Boston. Tufts dental students also volunteered at the one-day campaign to establish tooth print identification of the city’s children.

Mirlina Hilaire and Jennifer Fallon, both D04, have received MassHealth Access Program Dental Student Community Health Awards for their last year in dental school. In exchange for $40,000 during this year, both students agreed to work in Massachusetts community health clinics for two years after graduation.

Tim Horgan, A49, retired sports columnist for The Boston Herald, has been named one of New England’s sports legends by the Sports Museum of New England. As an undergraduate at Tufts, Horgan covered Jumbo football and basketball games and wrote features on Tufts’ athletes and coaches for the old Boston Herald Traveler. Horgan was voted Massachusetts Sports Writer of the Year eight times. Tufts presents the annual Tim Horgan Award to the university’s top student sports reporter.

Nancy Howarth, a doctoral candidate at the Friedman School, and her faculty colleagues Edward Saltzman, Megan McCrory, Andrew Greenberg, Johanna Dwyer, Lynne Ausman and Susan Roberts and their collaborators published “Fermentable and Non-fermentable Fiber Supplements Did Not Alter Hunger, Satiety or Body Weight in Men and Women Consuming Self-selected Diets” in the Journal of Nutrition (2003, 10:3141-3144).

Shauna Hutchinson, an M.D./Ph.D. student at the School of Medicine and president of the Tufts chapter of the Student National Medical Association (SNMA), organized the annual regional conference of the SNMA, “The Changing Tide: Trends in Medicine and Our Community,” which took place at Tufts in November. More than 100 medical students from Brown, Boston University, Dartmouth, Harvard, Tufts, the University of Connecticut, the University of Massachusetts and Yale attended. The conference featured a research competition, a session on health politics with Dr. Harris Berman, professor and chairman of family medicine and community health at Tufts, workshops and a dinner. Marjorie Janvier, a second-year M.D./M.P.H. student, served as co-coordinator of a residency fair held in conjunction with the conference.

Charles S. Inouye, who has been at Tufts since 1991, has been promoted to professor of Japanese by the university’s Board of Trustees.

Michael Jaharis, M87P, concluded his tenure on the Tufts University Board of Trustees in November. As a trustee and overseer to the School of Medicine and Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences, Jaharis stands out as the catalyst who brought about the transformation of Tufts’ medical school over the past two decades. A generous benefactor, Jaharis and his family also gave the largest gift ever to the school, which resulted in the construction of the Jaharis Family Center for Biomedical and Nutrition Sciences. “We owe a debt of gratitude for his vision for the medical school, his willingness to invest in that vision and his unflinching belief in the quality of a Tufts education,” Tufts President Lawrence S. Bacow said.

Dr. Jerome Kassirer, professor of medicine, received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Society of Medical Decision Making at the society’s annual meeting in October in Chicago.

Dr. Gerard Kugel, associate dean for research at the School of Dental Medicine; Dr. Morton Rosenberg, professor of oral and maxillofacial surgery at the dental school; and Amarendhra Kumar, professor of biomedical sciences at the School of Veterinary Medicine, have found that nitrous oxide significantly impacts the release of gonadotropin-releasing hormones (GnRH) by either decreasing their synthesis or affecting their mRNA stability. It’s been known for about 30 years that long-term exposure to nitrous oxide, if not “scavenged” (properly eliminated from the air), is associated with birth defects, spontaneous abortions and infertility among female dental assistants, hygienists and dentists. The research was funded by the Anesthesia Research Foundation of the American Dental Society of Anesthesiology and was published in Anesthesia Progress (50:53-61 2003).

Richard M. Lerner, Bergstrom Chair of Applied Developmental Science in the Eliot-Pearson Department of Child Development, participated in a Search Institute conference, “Healthy Communities, Healthy Youth,” in Minneapolis on October 23. Also in October, Lerner attended the Templeton Foundation board meeting. A participant in the Institute for Teaching and Learning Lecture Series, Lerner gave a lecture on “Promoting Positive Development Among Children and Adolescents: Integrating Theory, Research and Application” at Roger Williams University on October 29. On November 1-2, Lerner participated in the third biannual meeting of the Society for the Study of Human Development, delivering the President’s Address on November 2. The meeting was held at Harvard University.

Gary P. Leupp, a faculty member since 1988, has been promoted to professor of history.

Stephanie Wellen Levine’s new book, Mystics, Mavericks and Merrymakers: An Intimate Journey among Hasidic Girls (New York University Press, 2003), received a starred review in the September 29 issue of Publishers Weekly. The book is an intimate look at the lives of Hasidic teenage girls in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. From the ardently religious young woman who longs for the life of a male scholar to the young rebel who visits a strip club, smokes pot and agonizes over her loss of faith, to the proud Lubavitcher with a desire for a high-powered career, Levine, lecturer in English, provides a rare glimpse into the inner worlds and daily lives of these Hasidic girls. Levine lived among them for a year and became intimately acquainted with their struggles and dreams. She will be doing several speaking engagements for the book.

Nan Levinson, lecturer in English, tells the stories of 20 people who refused to let anyone whittle away at their right to speak, think, create or demur as they pleased in her new book, Outspoken: Free Speech Stories (University of California Press, 2003). Among these sometimes unlikely defenders of the cause of free speech are a diplomat who disclosed secret information about government misconduct in Guatemala, a Puerto Rican journalist who risked going to prison to protect her sources, a high school teacher who discussed gays and lesbians in literature, a firefighter who fought for his right to read Playboy at work and a former porn star who defended her performance as art. In an engaging, anecdotal style, Levinson explores the balance between First Amendment and other rights. “In this imaginative and highly readable examination of dozens of provocative First Amendment controversies, Nan Levinson establishes herself as a resolute student of the role of free speech in a democratic society. This is an exceptional book about an endlessly important subject,” writes James O. Freedman, president emeritus of Dartmouth College.

Alice H. Lichtenstein, Stanley N. Gershoff Professor of Nutrition Science and Policy and director of the Cardiovascular Nutrition Laboratory at the HNRCA, participated in a Harvard School of Public Health forum on “The Healthier Food Guide Pyramid: From Science to Practice.” In her remarks, Lichtenstein, an alumna of the Harvard School of Public Health, noted, “The pyramid was put together when people had more concern about preventing nutritional deficiencies. Now we need to prevent chronic disease.” She also spoke about the merits of an alternative graphic. “From what I understand, the Food Guide Pyramid is one of most recognizable nutrition symbols, but there is no evidence that people are interpreting it correctly.” She recommends a new graphic for the next generation of diet advice: “Something new may shake people up a little and get them to pay more attention.” Lichtenstein was awarded a pre-doctoral training grant in nutrition and cardiovascular disease from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.

Lisa M. Lynch, academic dean at the Fletcher School, has been appointed to a three-year term as a director of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. She is one of nine directors and also serves as one of three Class C directors of the bank who are chosen from professions outside of banking to represent business, agriculture, labor and consumers.

Tony Mann, professor of physics, and Jack Schneps, Vannevar Bush Chair and professor of physics, and their team of high-energy physics researchers have received nearly $800,000 from the U.S. Department of Energy to continue their study of fundamental energy systems. This is their 48th consecutive year of funding from the DOE, totaling $23 million since 1957. “A near half-century of funding is quite unusual and an important honor,” said Jamshed Bharucha, provost and senior vice president. The latest round of funding will enable the physicists to continue their research in four major areas: neutrino oscillations using a neutrino beam from the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory; the rare top quark particle carried out in the world’s highest energy- colliding beam machine at Fermilab; the development of detectors for what will be the world’s most powerful particle accelerator, slated for completion in Geneva in 2008, and development work for a powerful electron-positron colliding beam accelerator. The research team includes Kris Sliwa, professor; Austin Napier, professor; Bill Oliver, professor; Gary Goldstein, professor; Thomas Kafka, research professor; Hugh Gallagher, research scientist; postdoctoral fellows Simona Rolli and Marcin Wolter and six graduate students. This group has mentored more than 40 Ph.D. candidates at Tufts.

Pamela Maragliano and Michael Oppedisano, both D04, won the top prize in the predoctoral table clinic competition sponsored by the American College of Prosthodontics (ACP) October 9 in Dallas, Texas. The title of their presentation was “The Effects of a Predoctoral Prosthodontics Experience on Postdoctoral Prosthodontic Applications at Tufts University School of Dental Medicine.” Their first-place prize included a $500 award and recognition at the ACP presidential luncheon. Their presentation included an abstract, literature review, discussion of specific aspects of Tufts’ postgraduate prosthodontic rotation and how this rotation correlates to an increase in the number of applications from Tufts students to the school’s postgraduate prosthodontics program. Maragliano and Oppedisano plan to further develop this work for future publication and a presentation at the annual meeting of the American Dental Education Association in March 2004 in Seattle.

Dr. Mohsen Meydani, director of the HNRCA’s Vascular Biology Laboratory, was invited to speak on the “Molecular Mechanisms of Green Tea-induced Modulation of Angiogenesis” at the 2003 FASEB summer research conference in Saxons River, Vt. He spoke on nutrition and exercise in the elderly at the International Symposium on Free Radicals and Health in Sakarta City, Japan, October 23-25.

Dr. Simin Meydani, director of the HNRCA’s Nutritional Immunology Laboratory, moderated a symposium on Nutrition and Immunity at the American College of Nutrition’s 44th annual meeting in Nashville, Tenn., October 9-12. Meydani also was invited to give presentations on the “Mechanism of Action of Immune Cells” and the “Scientific Basis for Use of Immune Functions as a Biomarker to Assess Benefits of Dietary Components and Functional Foods.” She was invited to speak on “Antioxidants, Infection and Aging” at the Society for Leukocyte Biology’s 36th annual meeting in Philadelphia on October 2. Meydani was the recipient of the American Aging Association’s Denham Harman Research Award for her significant contributions to biomedical research on aging.

Kara Miller, a second-year Ph.D. student in English, is a columnist for The MetroWest Daily News. Her columns appear most Sundays. She often offers political commentary on New England Cable News’ “NewsNight.”

Aviva Must, associate professor of family medicine and community health, has discovered that being overweight as a young child may double a woman’s chance of dying from breast cancer. Must examined childhood health data of 858 women and found that those who were overweight at age 8 or younger were twice as likely to die of breast cancer. She found 29 cases of breast cancer mortality among the women. Because this was a study of mortality, she was unable to determine the number of women who may have survived breast cancer. Must cautioned that more research is needed and also noted that early onset of menstruation, common in overweight girls, might be a factor in the apparently higher breast cancer rates. She presented her research at a recent meeting of the North American Association for the Study of Obesity. Must and her collaborators published “Dairy Food Consumption and Body Weight and Fatness Studied Longitudinally over the Adolescent Period” in the September issue of the International Journal of Obesity.

Julie A. Nelson, senior research associate at the Global Development and Environment Institute, has just published a new book, Feminist Economics Today: Beyond Economic Man, with the University of Chicago Press. The volume, co-edited with Marianne A. Ferber, is a sequel to their path-breaking 1993 book, Beyond Economic Man: Feminist Theory and Economics.

Jose Ordovas, director of the HNRCA’s Nutrition and Genomics Laboratory, discussed “Nutrigenomics and Healthy Aging” at the Nutritional Modulation of Aging and Age-related Disease Conference June 7 in Baltimore.

Lynne Pepall, a faculty member since 1987, has been promoted to professor of economics by the Tufts Board of Trustees.

Dr. Andrew Plaut, professor of medicine and director of the GRASP center for digestive disease research at Tufts-New England Medical Center, has been named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Karen Pritzker, J83, was appointed to a five-year term on the university’s Board of Trustees in November. Pritzker and her husband, Dan Pritzker, A81, have been generous supporters of Tufts, most recently pledging $5 million to the Jay Pritzker Scholarship Challenge Grant to provide financial assistance to students of color.

Daniel J. Richards has been promoted to professor of economics by the Tufts Board of Trustees. He has been on the faculty since 1985.

Bill Richardson, A70, F71, governor of New Mexico, was appointed to a five-year term on the university’s Board of Trustees in November. Richardson served as U.S. secretary of energy in the Clinton administration and as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. He will preside as chairman of the Democratic National Convention in Boston next summer.