Grand Finale concludes School’s 40th anniversary celebration

Betty Drees, M.D., School of Medicine dean, and Ray Cattaneo, M.D., ’03, Alumni Association president, present James Sanders, M.D., chief of staff at the Kansas City Veterans Affairs Medical Center, with one of the evening’s special recognition awards during the School’s 40th anniversary Grand Finale event on April 28 at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts.

A full weekend of events drew nearly 200 dignitaries from throughout the state and UMKC School of Medicine alumni from across the country for a final celebration of the School’s 40th anniversary, highlighted by a Grand Finale event on April 28 at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts.

The School also sponsored a program on April 28 with presentations and speakers on Health Homes, an initiative under the Affordable Care Act that provides an alternative approach to health care services for Medicaid-eligible Missourians with chronic illnesses.

More than 100 members of the Hornstra Society, the alumni group for the UMKC Psychiatry Residency, and alumni from the School of Medicine gathered for reunions on April 27 at the Westin Crown Center Hotel.

Joseph Parks, M.D., medical director for the Missouri Department of Mental Health, gave a brief keynote address to members of the Hornstra Society, who honored Robijn Hornstra, M.D., the UMKC psychiatry department’s first chair, with a memorial video and words of remembrance from his son, Robijn Hornstra Jr, M.D., a former associate dean. The group also recognized the impending retirement of Stuart Munro, M.D., chairman and associate dean.

The Grand Finale event drew nearly 100 people for a reception followed by a concert by musicians from the UMKC Conservatory of Music in the Kauffman Center’s Helzberg Hall. The reception included a proclamation from Jackson County and the Office of Jackson County Executive Michael D. Sanders as well as a resolution from Kansas City Mayor Sylvester James Jr. and the City Council, recognizing the School of Medicine for its 40 years of advancing the health of the community.

Ray Cattaneo, M.D., ’03, UMKC SOM Alumni Association president, joined Betty Drees, M.D., School of Medicine dean, in welcoming guests and dignitaries to the Grand Finale. Drees recognized three current alumni award winners from the year: Catherine Spong, M.D., 91, the University’s 2012 Alumna of the Year, Alexander Norbash, M.D, ’85, the Alumni Achievement Award winner, and Mary Anne Jackson, M.D., ’78, the 2012 Take Wing Award winner. Spong and Norbash received their awards during the University’s alumni awards celebration earlier in the week and gave special lectures at the School of Medicine. Jackson will receive this year’s Take Wing Award and present the annual lecture on May 23 in conjunction with graduation week.

Drees and Cattaneo also gave special recognition to the School of Medicine’s affiliate hospitals; Center for Behavioral Medicine, Children’s Mercy Hospitals and Clinics, Kansas City Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Research Medical Center, Saint Luke’s Hospital of Kansas City, and Truman Medical Centers, and University Physician Associates, the School’s physician practice plan that provides its medical teaching faculty.

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