Welcome Note

A Message From the Board Chair

Ruth L. Gottesman, Ed.D.

A Message From the Board Chair

I would typically open this letter with news about articles in this issue of Einstein magazine that contain uplifting and positive stories about our educational and research enterprise—and I will get to that shortly. But first I am sharing the very sad news of the passing of my beloved husband, Sandy, in late September. Sandy lived a long, rewarding, and extremely fulfilling life, and we had the good fortune of being married for more than 72 years. During that time, Sandy demonstrated a strong and unwavering commitment to Einstein. You can read more about his extraordinary life, and his involvement with the College of Medicine, in this article about him.

Sandy would be as proud as I am about all the wonderful accomplishments of our faculty and students. Our newest students, who arrived on campus in August, are a remarkable group. Virtually all of them have engaged in extensive volunteer work, reflecting their deep commitment to service and community. 

Einstein magazine highlights the work of several distinguished female clinicians and researchers.
— Ruth Gottesman, Ed.D.

Sixty-three percent of the medical students in the Class of 2026 are female—the largest percentage of women in the College of Medicine’s history. And this issue of Einstein magazine highlights the work of several distinguished female clinicians and researchers.

For example, the remarkable career of Einstein and Montefiore physician and researcher Kathryn Anastos, M.D., who has served stints as a farm worker and bike messenger and has endured a bout with polio, is profiled in “The Change Agent.” Dr. Anastos has dedicated her life to advancing research and treatment for women and people of color with HIV/AIDS in the Bronx and beyond. She is now the principal investigator for three large National Institutes of Health studies and leads a team of more than a dozen Einstein and Montefiore researchers for one of those studies, developing new clinical programs and a better understanding of HPV infection and disease in the United States and Africa. 

The work of two female researchers at Montefiore Einstein Cancer Center is highlighted in our cover story, “Confronting Cancer.” Yvonne Saenger, M.D., is developing clinical tools to improve immunotherapy for patients with melanoma. Srilakshmi Raj, Ph.D., is exploring how genes and the environment interact to affect human health. 

A female neuroscientist involved in autism spectrum disorder research at Einstein is featured in this issue’s Lab Chat. Peri T. Kurshan, Ph.D., is studying how synapses—the connections between neurons—are assembled and how defects can lead to neurodevelopmental problems. 

I strongly encourage you to take a few moments to read this wonderful new edition of Einstein magazine. I hope you enjoy it as much as I have.

Ruth L. Gottesman, Ed.D.
Chair, Albert Einstein College of Medicine Board of Trustees
Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Einstein Professor Emerita of Pediatrics

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