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Alumni News

Editors: Jeanne Johnson, Jeff Labrecque, A&S '95
Contributing Writer: Lew Diuguid, SAIS '63


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Up from the Ashes
Regeneration and the Next Generation
Shelf Life
All's Well that Ends Swell
Diplomatic Tag Team
Physician-Publisher Disseminates Medical Knowledge
Homecoming 2003
Family Reunion
A Blueprint for the Future of Medicine
Planned Medical Campus Changes
Alumni Around the United States
Alumni & Friends Launch New Web Site

Daniel Polin, A&S '72, and Justin Schein, A&S '90
Up from the Ashes

September 11 was a national punch-in-the-gut that still aches, a nagging reminder that we can no longer take freedom for granted. New York filmmakers Daniel Polin, president of Great Projects Film Company, and Justin Schein, co-founder of Shadowbox Films, want to take that nagging ache and turn it into constructive action.

Schein and Polin Producer Polin and co-producer/cinematographer Schein, both former humanities majors, collaborated on America Rebuilds: A Year at Ground Zero, a documentary that looks at the demolition and clean-up of the site, as well as the heated debate over what should replace the Twin Towers, and what should be done to memorialize the 2,792 people there who were killed there that day. Narrated by Kevin Spacey, the documentary aired on PBS on the one-year anniversary of the attack. Now, Polin is at work on a follow-up.

As Polin sees it, America Rebuilds works best as a three-part series, with the next installment being The Road to Recovery for broadcast in September 2004, and the last installment covering the completed reconstruction of the site.

Many of Polin's films have aired on PBS, including Crucible of Empire: The Spanish-American War and An Essay on Matisse, which was nominated for an Academy Award. He also produced a series of documentaries on major engineering achievements called Great Projects: The Building of America and won an Emmy for George Marshall and the American Century.

Scenes of the 9/11 aftermath from America Rebuilds (at right and below) Schein, who began as an intern at Great Projects in 1990, went on to earn a master's degree in documentary filmmaking from Stanford University and is now an award-winning cameraman and director in New York. As co-founder of Shadowbox Films, he has shot for the BBC, National Geographic, MTV, and PBS, on topics as varied as Searching for God Online, which explores the growth of religion on the Internet, and Baby Daddy, about young inner-city men who struggle to come to terms with the responsibilities of fatherhood.

Collaborating on America Rebuilds had special meaning for the two Hopkins alumni.

"As a New Yorker, it was a powerful experience," says Schein. "I'm the type of person who wants to take action, and I felt that, somehow, through this project, I could be involved in the healing process." While filming, Schein was "literally on the pile 24/7. We were one of only two film crews allowed within five blocks of the site. It was amazing to have that kind of access."

For Polin, the project seemed like a natural outgrowth of his interest in engineering and public works. And the connections he developed while shooting The Building of America led to extraordinary access for this project. "I thought we were in an unusual position to tell a story from an insider's perspective," he says. "It was almost an obligation. What I couldn't anticipate was what a profound effect it would have on me, and what it meant to the workers, families, residents of New York, and the rest of us." After the broadcast, the filmmakers received e-mails from people around the world, thanking them for providing closure on what happened on 9/11.

"It was such a painful experience that it took months and months to get some objectivity on the story," Polin says. Once his head cleared a bit, however, his viewpoint evolved. The film looked at various options for rebuilding the World Trade Center site, and, says Polin, "What I thought going into the project was not what I thought going out. At first, I thought the site should be rebuilt as a commercial space, similar to what it was before. But after I saw the first rough cut, I thought, 'How can you build something [commercial] on this place?' You can't escape the fact that it's a spiritual place now, and that has to be recognized."

He admits that some people may be experiencing September 11 fatigue, but, he adds, "Instead of just looking back, I'm interested in how to respond and bring good out of it." As a longtime fan of the vision and fortitude needed to create monumental public works, Polin believes that the devastation of that terrible day can be turned into an opportunity to "begin building a new 21st-century city in America."

So far, it looks like that new city will include a memorial, a tower, and a major new public transportation station for downtown Manhattan. But the exact nature of that new city is what Polin plans to explore in The Road to Recovery, his next project. —Jeanne Johnson

Arinzeh is using her award to help under-represented minority students succeed. Regeneration and the Next Generation

Treena Livingston Arinzeh, Engr '95 (MS), is working to develop a powerful new weapon in the battle against cancer and numerous debilitating diseases. Her innovative research in tissue generation has raised hopes that doctors will soon be able to save and, in fact, regenerate damaged or diseased limbs by using adult stem cells and biomaterials to induce bone, cartilage, tendon, and tissue repair.

Last April, the National Science Foundation awarded Arinzeh the NSF Early Development Award, a five-year, $400,000 grant that recognizes and supports the activities of those most likely to become tomorrow's academic leaders. Arinzeh will use the grant to set up her lab and finance equipment, supplies, and a team of graduate students at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, where she is an assistant professor.

Arinzeh has also designated a portion of the grant for a program that will introduce her research to underrepresented minority high school girls and encourage them to consider the sciences as a career. "Growing up, I didn't know anything about engineering," Arinzeh said. "It wasn't until I had a very good physics teacher in high school that I considered engineering as my future." So while Arinzeh pursues her promising research, she is already contributing toward the development of our next generation of female scientists. —Jeff Labrecque, A&S '95

Shelf Life

The Chinese in America, by Iris Chang, A&S '91 (MA), Viking (2003)
Chang's follow-up to Rape of Nanking is a daunting documentation of "white" Americans still finding a "yellow peril" in 3 million Chinese Americans, most now generations deep, whose contribution has been disproportionate to their number.

Empires of Light: Edison, Tesla, Westinghouse, and the Race to Electrify the World, by Jill Jonnes, A&S '89 (MA), '92 (PhD), Random House (2003)
As current generations harness nuclear power, they retain the charged vocabulary — dynamic, shocking, electrifying! — of a prior quest for energy. The electrons fairly leap as Jonnes personifies that high-voltage history with a three-wired account. The least-known titan, Tesla, comes across as the most magnetic.

a few short notes on tropical butterflies, by John Murray, SPH '91 (MPH), HarperCollins (2003)
The language of these eight stories is as intimately scientific as it is artful, while the geographic sweep and the complexity of the social settings are as startling as the fatal flight of the Monarch — which provides the meta-phor for the title piece.
—Lew Diugiud, SAIS '63

Ilene Rosenzweig, A&S '87: All's Well that Ends Swell

A glamorous Manhattan-circuit nightlife. A fashion designer best friend and business partner. A May wedding in Portofino, Italy, to one-time gadabout Rick Marin (a former New York Times journalist and author of Cad: Confessions of a Reformed Bachelor), who has since pledged his fidelity in People magazine.

It sounds like one of Bridget Jones' more outrageous fantasies. But for Johns Hopkins grad Ilene Rosenzweig, A&S '87, it's real life. And real life is, well, swell.

"Swell" is a concept dreamed up by Rosenzweig and clothing designer Cynthia Rowley, which the two have parlayed into books, television appearances, and now, a $100 million licensing deal with Target stores.

Ilene Rosenzweig
Photo by Jefferson Steele
Rosenzweig, who used to be the deputy editor of the Times' Sunday Styles section, and Rowley hit on their "swell" idea one night in New York. "Cynthia and I were out at a party she was having after one of her shows," explains Rosenzweig, a Writing Seminars graduate. "She was treating all night, but then I paid for a round of drinks without her knowing. She looked around to see who was the sport, and when she saw it was me and not some hunky guy — after her initial disappointment — she said, 'Wow, that was a swell move.' That started a discussion on etiquette and what sort of lost etiquette we should bring back. We thought it would be fun to write an etiquette book, and it expanded to all kinds of style things, too."

In 1999, the two published their first book, Swell: A Girl's Guide to the Good Life. A retro-but-not-retrograde primer for modern women, the book offers advice on how to be "swell." (Go ahead and fix your own flat tire, gals. And while you're at it, why not bring your date flowers?) It was a hit, selling more than 150,000 copies.

The success of the "swell" concept prompted the two women, who had been friends since meeting in Paris in the late '80s, to create Swellco, an "integrated lifestyle and media brand" aimed at "today's smart, spirited girl-on-the-go modern style that is adventurous, cool, and unpretentious." The sequel to the first book, Home Swell Home, was released in August 2002 and has sold more than 75,000 copies. Swell Holiday will come out this October, and The Swell Dressed Party will follow in spring of next year.

The "swell" ideology — which Rosenzweig describes as "an irreverent style and sense of humor that touches every part of your life" — has crossed over into a number of media channels. The two write a monthly column in Glamour magazine and co-host "A Girl's Guide to Swell Movies" on Showtime Women. And Ron Howard's production company, Imagine Entertainment, is developing a sitcom with ABC (a buddy comedy based on the "swell" philosophy) for this fall.

The Target deal, signed in January 2003, will turn Swellco's colorful concept into a product line that includes everything from sheets to cocktail sets to clothing. Now, that's one swell Hopkins grad. —Sally McGrane, A&S '03 (MA)

Diplomatic Tag Team

Washington, D.C., is not best known as a honeymoon destination, but Sir Christopher Meyer, Bol '66, didn't have much of a choice. One day after his wedding in October 1997, Meyer was in D.C., beginning his first day of work as British ambassador to the United States.

The world has changed dramatically since then, but Anglo-American ties are stronger than ever. Meyer, who left the post in March to become chairman of the UK's Press Complaints Commission, deserves a share of the credit. "The most significant thing I was able to do was lay the foundation for a smooth handover from Clinton to Bush for Tony Blair and the British government," says Meyer.

Around Washington, Meyer is known for his charm, wit, and trademark red socks, as well as his skillful diplomacy. His five and a half years in Washington — the longest by a UK ambassador since 1939 — won him many friends all around the country. "Americans have an extraordinary, spontaneous generosity of spirit," Meyer says. "People's emotions are close to the surface, closer than they are in a lot of Europe, including in Britain. I like that."

While Meyer will be missed, Tony Blair knows where to find outstanding diplomats. His new ambassador, Sir David Manning, is a 1972 Bologna alumnus. —JL

Leslie Norins, A&S '58: Physician- Publisher Disseminates Medical Knowledge

While many of his contemporaries are enjoying retirement, Leslie Norins, A&S '58, is enthusiastically plunging into a new business venture, building on a publishing career that has spanned more than three decades. The physician and scientist has, so far, launched more than 60 medical newsletters and was elected last year to the Hall of Fame of the Newsletter and Electronic Publishers Association.

Norins has never been one to follow the expected path. As a Hopkins pre-med student, he took as many humanities classes as possible and educated himself about business, leaving campus most afternoons after classes and on weekends for the world of commerce. He worked several years for the pioneering Rouse Company, which was building Baltimore's first regional shopping mall and acquiring the land for what would become Columbia, Maryland.

Leslie and Rainey Norins "It was like a secret dual life," he recalls with some relish. "I was exposed to a tremendously high level of strategic thinking and business leadership." He also gained valuable research experience at Hopkins, as the only undergraduate working on a study of food allergies directed by legendary chemistry professor Alsoph Corwin.

Norins earned his medical degree from Duke University, and was awarded an NIH fellowship that took him to Australia, where he was the personal student of Nobel Prize winner Sir MacFarlane Burnet and earned his Ph.D. in immunology.

Then it was back to the U.S. for a job at the Centers for Disease Control. As director of its venereal disease research laboratory at a time when the spread of syphilis and other sexually transmitted diseases had become a pressing public concern, Norins was in the media spotlight, served on national committees, and wrote countless reports. "But after seven wonderful years, I decided that bureaucracy wasn't the long-term place for me," he says.

As he considered what to do next, Norins realized he had "fallen in love with medical writing." So he struck out in an entirely new direction, creating his first newsletter on a topic that was in the news: hospital-acquired infections. Investing all his small savings in a nationwide mailing to hospitals, he got a good response and was "off and running." He soon got requests from his hospital subscribers for newsletters on other topics, and the company expanded, growing to 15 titles before he accepted an offer from a large publisher to sell.

He repeated that success twice, each time creating and then selling a new group of newsletters. Retirement beckoned, he admits, "but topics kept jumping out of the news." So he and his wife, Rainey, recently launched a new company that has so far produced three new offerings: Residency Program Director's Alert, for teaching hospitals; Indigent Care Success, for those who fund and manage care of uninsured patients; and Nurse Recruitment and Retention, which helps healthcare facilities cope with the nursing shortage.

Leslie Norins has turned a love for medical writing into a successful business, offering specialized newsletters like these to healthcare professionals. Norins is also turning his attention to "repaying, in a partial way, the universities that prepared me for a successful life," he says. He has made estate plans for a gift of $5 million to Hopkins' Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, along with a like bequest to the Duke School of Medicine.

"We are tremendously grateful to Leslie and Rainey Norins for their generosity in planning such a significant gift for the Krieger School," comments university President William R. Brody. "Dr. and Mrs. Norins are valued and visionary partners in ensuring a bright future for the Krieger School," adds Daniel Weiss, the James B. Knapp Dean. —Margaret Hindman

Homecoming 2003: May 1-4 2003

William Hunt, A&S '68 (left), and Hugh Loebner, A&S '63 (right), had Blue Jays on the brain during Hopkins' lacrosse clash with crosstown rival Loyola. The Blue Jays hammered the Greyhounds, 17-6, in front of more than 5,000 fans at Homewood Field — their eighth straight win on their way to the NCAA title game.

Alumni from the Class of 1998 (pictured above) joined more than 2,000 friends and former classmates for 80-plus festive homecoming events, which took place at Homewood and the medical campus.

Levi Watkins (pictured above, center, with Robert Clayton, president of SOBA, and a student) is associate dean and professor of cardiac surgery at the School of Medicine. He addressed the Society of Black Alumni, friends, and students about how racism in America affects minorities' access to adequate health care.

The Class of 2003 let off some steam during the Senior Class Barbecue, which took place near the Lacrosse Hall of Fame prior to the Blue Jays' game against Loyola. Johns Hopkins' newest alumni graduated on Homewood Field just three weeks later.

Jack Zimmerman, Med '53, met his wife, Doris, Nurs '53, A&S '80 (MLA), at Hopkins in the early 1950s, when he was a medical student and she was studying to be a nurse. "The Biennial weekend was a wonderful opportunity to get together with some of the friends with whom we shared those marvelous times," said Zimmerman.

Ereni Gleason has been attending Homecoming with her father, Tom, since she was a child.

Family Reunion

Most alumni don't expect to run into their dads at college reunions, but Ereni Gleason, A&S '93, SPS '97 (MS), is used to it. Her father, Tom, A&S '63, '68 (PhD), has been bringing her to Johns Hopkins homecomings since she was a child, when she would root for the lacrosse team in a "Sink Navy" baseball hat.

In May, the Gleasons celebrated landmark class reunions, and both returned to Homewood to continue their own traditions. "In the last 40 years, we've been to certainly more than 30 homecomings and probably more than 35," says Tom. This year, they enjoyed the Blue Jays' victory against Loyola, and then Ereni joined Tom and the Class of '63 at the Hopkins Club before her own class's event.

"I thought it was special to have my picture taken with my dad at the Club," Ereni says.

When Tom was growing up in Atlanta, he knew very little about Johns Hopkins — much less Baltimore. "I didn't even know what the Chesapeake Bay was until I came to Hopkins," Tom says. His mother, however, worked at Georgia Tech, and when she asked their physics department about the top undergraduate programs, they suggested Hopkins. For the next 10 years, Tom never lived farther than a few blocks from the Homewood physics labs, and Maryland has been home ever since.

For Ereni, Baltimore was always home, and she successfully resisted any urge to go away when it was her turn for college. "I instantly loved it here," Ereni says of Homewood.

While some of their classmates won't be back to campus until their next big reunion, the Gleasons plan to be back next year, as always, finding old friends in the lacrosse stands and making new ones during the weekend. "Johns Hopkins is really something to be proud of," says Tom, who served on the 1963 Reunion Committee.

Ereni often has a house full of ex-classmates during alumni weekend, although "you know you're getting older when your friends pass up your sofa for a room at the Colonnade," she says.

But you're never too old to watch the game with your dad. —JL

A Blueprint for the Future of Medicine: Seizing Opportunity

Morris Offit is involved in shaping the future of medicine — and as the chairman of the Knowledge for the World campaign for Johns Hopkins Medicine, he wants to get others involved as well. Here's why.

Excellence' is a word that gets overused, but there's no other term that truly describes Johns Hopkins Medicine," says Morris W. Offit, A&S '57. "This is a world-renowned resource for medical care, teaching, and research — a place where innovations and new discoveries happen every day."

Last May, for example, Johns Hopkins Medicine researchers unveiled the results of a pioneering study of a new imaging technique that holds great promise in diagnosing and monitoring the treatment of malignant brain tumors. That same month:

Hopkins physicians performed the Hospital's first minimally invasive heart surgery using robotic technology.

More than 100 new Johns Hopkins MDs heard from the School of Medicine's former executive vice dean Elias Zerhouni, now director of the National Institutes of Health, who encouraged them to fulfill their legacies as "formidable" doctors from one of the most prestigious medical schools in the world.

Medicine researchers announced a life-saving new treatment for children with chronic hepatitis-C, identified a potential risk factor for early-onset atherosclerosis, and uncovered a genetic cause of many cases of deadly pancreatic cancer.

The Knowledge for the World Campaign will make possible a new Children's and Maternal Hospital designed to be patient- and family-centered.
Photo by Clark Vandergrift
"For people who want to make a difference in the world, I can think of no better place to make a philanthropic investment than Johns Hopkins," comments Offit, who is chairman emeritus of the University Board of Trustees and an active Johns Hopkins Medicine trustee.

Jeanne Johnson talks with the longtime Johns Hopkins advocate and supporter about what the campaign's success will make possible at the School of Medicine and the Hospital/Health System.

You've played a leadership role for more than three decades at Johns Hopkins. What keeps you motivated?

I love being associated with a world-renowned treasure like Johns Hopkins. It's a privilege. I am interacting with world-class talent. Where else would I have that opportunity?

What are the more important campaign priorities at Johns Hopkins Medicine?

Most pressing are the need for new research space and the need for two new clinical buildings, the Children's and Maternal Hospital and the Cardiovascular and Critical Care Tower.

At the same time, there is an ongoing need for support for teaching and faculty, scholarships and fellowships, and research and clinical programs. In addition — as genetic medicine and the explosion of new technology create possibilities for progress we could never have imagined just a year ago — unrestricted support for the dean's discretionary use is tremendously important.

Why are new buildings needed?

The medical campus is its own small city, a center for medical care and progress. People always talk about "building up a research base," but you can't pursue new research directions or apply new technology without the proper facilities. The buildings are the base. Johns Hopkins physicians, nurses, and researchers need more space and different space to make the scientific discoveries and deliver the patient care that make a real difference in people's lives.

The need for buildings is really about people. It's an opportunity to be involved in the transformation of medicine.

When you talk with people who are considering a gift, what do you tell them?

The appeal of Johns Hopkins, what really makes it distinctive, is its prominence and reputation for excellence. It's known throughout the world. I really do think there is such a thing as Johns Hopkins pride. People want to be identified with that.

People who make philanthropy an integral part of their lives also want to see something concrete happen as a result of their investment. Johns Hopkins clearly makes a difference in individual lives and for all of us, in the U.S. and around the world.

Planned Medical Campus Changes

1. New Cardiovascular and Critical Care Tower
2. New Children's and Maternal Hospital
3. New Hospital Main Entrance
4. New Cancer Research Building
5. New Research Beuilding on Broadway
6. Future Green Space

Building the Base

Just as the architecture and organization of Johns Hopkins Hospital and the School of Medicine revolutionized medical practice, research, and education more than a century ago, the Knowledge for the World campaign aims to create the blueprint for a new era in medicine. Johns Hopkins Medicine's vision for the future, which depends greatly on private philanthropic support, includes:

A new Children's and Maternal Hospital and a new Cardiovascular and Critical Care Tower, both designed to be patient- and family-centered, to foster the collaborative approach that characterizes treatment at Johns Hopkins, and to support not only today's most effective therapies, but also future innovations in care.

New research facilities that promote interdisciplinary collaborative research in such areas as the basic sciences and cancer research, and other areas where the potential for innovation is limited by space.

Increased focus on students, including endowment for scholarships and fellowships and enhancement of student life.

Development of innovative educational strategies for Hopkins students and practicing physicians worldwide.

Advances in research and patient care in every clinical department, including endowed professorships and research programs.

Continued improvement of services at the Johns Hopkins network of hospitals.

Fulfillment of Johns Hopkins Medicine's obligation to treat the uninsured and improve health options for the Baltimore region.

To learn more about Johns Hopkins Medicine or to discuss a gift, call 410-516-6800.

Alumni Around the
United States


Baltimore Chapter

Saturday, September 6
Green Mount Cemetery Tour

Tuesday, September 16
Historical Maps of Maryland with Edward Papenfuse, A&S '69 (MA), '73 (PhD), state archivist at Evergreen House

Saturday, September 20
Hairspray at the Mechanic Theatre

Los Angeles Chapter

Sunday, September 21
Crab feast at the Jamaica Bay Inn

Massachusetts Chapter

Sunday, September 21
Golf outing at Stow Acres Country Club

New York Chapter

Wednesday, September 3
U.S. Open tennis quarterfinals

Saturday, September 6
U.S. Open women's tennis final

Tuesday, September 30
Crabcake dinner with lacrosse coaches Dave Pietramala and Janine Tucker at Gallagher's

Monday, November 10
Concert and reception with Dr. Robert Sirota, director of Peabody, at Carnegie Hall

Saturday, November 22
Tour of Montclair Art Museum

Pittsburgh Chapter

Friday, November 7
Annual alumni dinner at the LeMont restaurant, with guest speaker Jerry Schnydman, A&S '67, executive assistant to President Brody and secretary to the Board of Trustees

Richmond/Williamsburg Chapter

Tuesday, September 23
Dinner and discussion with Dr. Paul McHugh, the Henry Phipps Professor of Psychiatry at the School of Medicine

San Diego Chapter

Friday, September 19
Crab feast at the Karl Strauss Brew Gardens

San Francisco Chapter

Saturday, September 13
Picnic and wine tasting in Napa, hosted by Ernie Bates, A&S '58

Southeast Florida Chapter

Sunday, September 28
New York Mets at Florida Marlins


Thursday, October 16
"Five Cities/One Night." Alumni welcome the Class of 2003 simultaneously in Baltimore, Washington, D.C., New York, Philadelphia, and Boston.

Alumni & Friends Launch New Web Site

In June, the Alumni Association and the Office of Development and Alumni Relations launched a revamped Alumni & Friends Web site. The new site combines fresh, audience-focused news and the power of HopkinsNET, the university's online alumni directory, making it easier than ever to find whom you want, what you want, when you want.

"The impetus for creating a more integrated and content-rich Web site came in part from ideas put forth by members of the Alumni Council," said Joe Reynolds, Engr '69, Alumni Association president. "The site is more responsive to audience needs and interests."

The Web site includes:

Expanded news for and about Johns Hopkins alumni, culled from JHUpdate, Johns Hopkins Magazine, and other Johns Hopkins publications

News about scientific discoveries from Johns Hopkins

Expanded information about supporting Johns Hopkins, including how to make annual and planned gifts and ways to give from outside the United States

The site still offers links found in the previous version, including events, career resources, online giving and membership dues forms, and Blue Jays box scores.

"This site is a giant leap forward for the Alumni Association, but it also lays the groundwork for even greater advancements," said Fritz Schroeder, executive director of alumni relations. The site will eventually deliver customized views of information and other specialized services to the 17,000 registered users of HopkinsNET.

If you haven't already, log on to today.

Return to September 2003 Table of Contents

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