Dear Colleagues-Friends,

Some stellar stories have crossed my desk recently, and I wanted to share them with you:

  • Our congratulations go to Curtis N. Sessler, M.D., F’85, who has been honored by the Association of Critical-Care Nurses with its Pioneering Spirit Award. According to nursing leaders, Dr. Sessler was ahead of his time in fostering an environment where physicians, nurses and other members of the care team work together.
  • Over the past year, the Class of 2019’s Joanne Chiao spent her Friday mornings volunteering at a local retirement community where she served as a painting partner for adults with early-onset Alzheimer’s dementia. She wrote about her experience in a first-person account for the AAMC’s Aspiring Docs Diaries blog, describing how it improved her ability to understand how individuals perceive their health and disease. “Where previously, I would have honed in on the science, the clinical dilemma and its associated decision-making — I saw instead, a person’s frustration, their struggle with a chronic condition. I heard how distressing and debilitating the pain was. I heard, but, even more, saw, how that pain stole her autonomy, function, and above all, quality of life.”
  • We’re grateful to PharmTox alumna Teri Stockham, Ph.D., who wants to break the cycle of the synthetic drug epidemic and thinks the next generation of forensic toxicologists are poised to do it. That’s just one reason she endowed a scholarship to support forensic science graduate students in VCU’s College of Humanities and Sciences. “I made it through 10 years of education through scholarships and working – no loans or family assistance. I feel blessed to be in this position at this time in my life and wanted to give back.”


In addition, the most recent issue of the MCV Foundation’s Chronicle of Giving includes extensive coverage of our medical school. This publication that goes to the MCV Campus’ alumni and friends features a cover story on the Virginia Treatment Center for Children’s new facility.

The issue also spotlights the Class of 1972’s Don Sanders, M.D., who with his wife, Terry, has made a gift in support of the fmStat Scholarship Fund. The publication instructs readers on how to use planned giving to support the MCV Campus, featuring our friends Nancy and Craig Canning as an example, and also recognizes the Hume-Lee Transplant Center’s 60th anniversary, Dr. Gerry Moeller’s appointment to the Wright Distinguished Chair and a number of faculty awards and leadership roles. I’m also appreciative that they included an update from me that reflects on the past 18 months.

You can read all this and more in the spring 2018 issue of the Chronicle of Giving that’s posted online.

I hope you’ll enjoy these stories.

With every good wish,

Peter F. Buckley, M.D.
Dean, VCU School of Medicine
Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs, VCU Health System