Chancellor: Worcester is well positioned to be biomedical leader

Arthur and Martha Pappas receive the Isaiah Thomas Award for community service

By Lisa M. Larson and Bryan Goodchild

UMass Medical School Communications

February 29, 2012

Chancellor Michael F. Collins, MD, challenged the Worcester community to envision the city as a globally renowned health care destination, helping to chart the future of "precision medicine" as a leader in translational research.

"The leap from translational science to precision medicine is as bold a vision as anyone can imagine," said Chancellor Collins, in the keynote speech on Tuesday, Feb. 28, at Mechanics Hall during the annual Worcester Telegram & Gazette Visions community awards. "It is as audacious as walking on the moon, as laudable as eradicating smallpox, and as necessary as giving every American the right to an education.”

"My firm belief is that Worcester is well positioned to be a major player in the evolution and success of this next generation of biomedical practice,” he said.

The Visions awards recognize community members for their dedication to philanthropy, public service, and cultural and academic enrichment. Top honors went to Arthur Pappas, MD, professor of orthopedics & physical rehabilitation and pediatrics, and founding chair of the Department of Orthopedics, and his wife, Martha, who received the Isaiah Thomas Award for their tireless contributions to their hometown of Auburn, and the community as a whole. Telegram Editor Leah Lamson called the lengthy list of community contributions by the Pappases "head spinning."

Martha Pappas told the gathering of 300 that she and her husband were humbled by the honor, calling it "Worcester's most prestigious award."

Read full coverage of the Visions 2012 awards in the Telegram & Gazette: T&G Visions award winners lauded by grateful community

Read the full text of Chancellor Collins’ speech