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Stories of Giving

  • 12/21/20 Generous gift for ALS research supports next step in treating ‘disgraceful’ disease

    Generous gift for ALS research supports next step in treating ‘disgraceful’ disease

    The Lewis family has supported the ALS research of Robert H. Brown Jr., DPhil, MD, at UMass Medical School since 2013, when they launched a foundation and its annual musical event, ChrisFest. Recently, they generously gifted funds to boost the Brown lab’s latest ground-breaking endeavor: a series of novel clinical trials to treat forms of ALS through gene silencing therapeutics that could one day become commercially available medications.

  • 12/21/20 Fraternal Order of Eagles keeps UMMS research flying high

    Fraternal Order of Eagles keeps UMMS research flying high

    Certain scientific achievements, such as the coronavirus vaccines, can break through quickly when fueled by funding in the millions. Yet most research efforts are decades-long explorations, requiring many years of funding support. As lab costs and the number of investigators vying for grants continue to increase, community-based funding from organizations like the Fraternal Order of Eagles has been vital.

  • 12/08/20 Andrew Miller, MD’79, and Christine Miller establish endowed scholarship

    Andrew Miller, MD’79, and Christine Miller establish endowed scholarship

    Regular annual donors to UMass Medical School for decades, the Millers decided last year to secure their impact for generations to come by endowing the Christine and Andrew Miller, MD’79, Scholarship for Medical Students. Beginning in 2021, an annual award will go to a School of Medicine student with demonstrated economic need.

  • 10/26/20 Dedication, commitment to UMass Medical School and emergency medicine recognized with new endowed chair

    Dedication, commitment to UMass Medical School and emergency medicine recognized with new endowed chair

    Ann Aghababian establishes lasting legacy to honor her husband, Richard V. Aghababian, MD’74, who was devoted to UMMS and the field of emergency medicine, which he shaped and advanced in New England and in locations around the globe.

  • 09/14/20 2020 UMass Cancer Walk and Run

    UMass Cancer Walk and Run supporters continue tradition of generosity

    Gratitude, solidarity and hope were the themes of the day on Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020, when the 22nd annual—and first-ever virtual—UMass Cancer Walk and Run took place. And with good reason, as donors, fundraisers and sponsors maintained their steadfast support for cancer research and clinical trials at UMass Medical School.

  • 08/26/20 AHA grant to probe the heart of COVID-19 infections

    AHA grant to probe the heart of COVID-19 infections

    When it became painfully clear that COVID-19 causes significant cardiac disease in many patients, with potentially deadly blood clots appearing in the heart, lungs and other organs, Jane Freedman, MD, had a striking insight: her work on influenza and cardiovascular disease, and the role of platelets, could be adapted to investigate what was going on with this new coronavirus. The American Heart Association saw merit in exploring the idea, and awarded a grant to fund a new project.

  • 08/17/20 Mathers Foundation helps UMMS battle COVID-19 at the genetic level

    Mathers Foundation helps UMMS battle COVID-19 at the genetic level

    Armed with a major new grant from the G. Harold and Leila Y. Mathers Charitable Foundation, a team of researchers at UMass Medical School is seeking to disrupt the virus that causes COVID-19.

  • 08/04/20 A name, and promise, live on: Family establishes the Paul A. Vernaglia Jr., MD’78, Memorial Scholarship

    A name, and promise, live on: Family establishes the Paul A. Vernaglia Jr., MD’78, Memorial Scholarship

    After her mother, Margaret “Peggy” Vernaglia, passed away in 2019 at age 96, Irene Toomey went through her papers. She found letters from UMass Medical School, sent year after year, thanking Mrs. Vernaglia for showing consistent generosity toward School of Medicine students in financial need. Irene recalled that her mother had asked her to ensure this giving continue after her death, so that her late son, Irene’s brother Paul A. Vernaglia Jr., MD’78, would not be forgotten.

  • 06/23/20 Bassick Family Foundation boosts COVID-19 research at UMass Medical School

    Bassick Family Foundation boosts COVID-19 research at UMass Medical School

    The Bassick Family Foundation has supported early-stage biomedical research at UMMS for many years through annual gifts to the Hudson Hoagland Society (HHS). This year, the Bassicks decided to make an additional major gift to the newly established COVID-19/Pandemic Research Fund.

  • 06/12/20 Two UMMS scientists to receive Harrington Scholar Awards for Coronavirus

    Two UMMS scientists to receive Harrington Scholar Awards for Coronavirus

    Katherine Fitzgerald, PhD, and Anastasia Khvorova, PhD, among 12 scientists worldwide to receive COVID-19 rapid-response initiative awards from Harrington Discovery Institute.

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