July 18, 2000
Volume 47
Number 1

Dr. Strumpf: Interim Dean of School of Nursing

Dr. Neville E. Strumpf, the Edith Clemmer Steinbright Professor in Gerontology and Director of the Center for Gerontologic Nursing Science, has been named interim dean of the School of Nursing, effective September 1, according to an announcement on June 7 by President Judith Rodin and Provost Robert Barchi.

"We are delighted that an academician of Dr. Strumpf's stature has agreed to take on the role of interim dean of the School of Nursing," Dr. Rodin said. "Dr. Strumpf's impressive history of combining teaching with administrative responsibilities and research makes her the ideal candidate to lead the School through this important transition."

Dr. Strumpf will replace Dr. Norma Lang, the Margaret Bond Simon Dean and Professor of Nursing, who will step down this summer to devote her time to teaching and research.

"I am pleased that Dr. Strumpf will apply her considerable talents to the leadership and stewardship of the School of Nursing," said Dr. Barchi. Dr. Lang, who will remain as dean through August 31, added that "leaving the School in such capable hands makes the decision to return to my own pursuits that much easier."

Dr. Strumpf joined the School of Nursing faculty in 1982 as an assistant professor. She became director of the Gerontology Nurse Practitioner Program in 1985, and it has been named first nationally among gerontology programs in U.S. News & World Report rankings in 1998 and for 2001. She also was responsible for the implementation of a much-emulated approach to the integration of gerontology into the undergraduate curriculum.

A leader of long-standing within the School, Dr. Strumpf is known for her teaching expertise at all levels-- undergraduate, masters and doctoral--as well as for serving as the School of Nursing's division chair for Adult Health and Illness from 1993 to 1996.

Dr. Strumpf is a Fellow of the American Academy of Nursing and of the School of Medicine's Institute on Aging.

Dr. Strumpf is a widely acclaimed researcher, best known for work with her colleague, Dr. Lois Evans, Viola MacInnes/Independence Professor in Nursing. Their breakthrough research led to a reduction in the use of restraints for frail older people in hospitals and nursing homes throughout the nation. Drs. Strumpf and Evans conducted the only clinical trial funded by the National Institute on Aging aimed at reducing physical restraints used in nursing homes.

She received (with Dr. Evans and Doris Schwartz) the Maes-MacInnes Award (1992) for a contribution of singular impact on the nursing profession; was selected (with Dr. Evans) as the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society in Nursing's Cameo Researcher (1994); and received (with Dr. Evans) the Sigma Theta Tau International Baxter Foundation Episteme Award (1995), nursing's most prestigious research recognition.

Dr. Santomero to Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia


Dr. Anthony M. Santomero, Richard K. Mellon Professor of Finance at the Wharton School, was appointed on June 29 as Bank President by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia. Dr. Santomero began his duties July 10, succeeding Edward G. Boehne, who retired May 31. The appointment was made by the Bank's Board of Directors and approved by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System in Washington, D.C.

Since 1995, Dr. Santomero has served as director of the Wharton Financial Institutions Center, the world's premier academic research institution on the financial services industry. He has also been a consultant and advisor for leading financial institutions and regulatory agencies in the U.S. and abroad on issues including risk management, financial restructuring, credit risk evaluation and management, and regulation.

"Tony Santomero has an extensive background in financial services and monetary policy issues," said Joan Carter, chairman of the Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank's board of directors. "I am confident that under his leadership the Bank will continue to excel as we meet the challenges of an ever-changing financial environment."

Dr. Santomero, who has requested a leave of absence from the School, will retain his professorship while serving in his new role.


Dr. Finkel: $1 Million Packard

Dr. Leif Finkel, professor of bioengineering, has received a $1 million award from the David and Lucile Packard Foundation. Dr. Finkel is a member of the Institute for Medicine and Engineering (IME). A 1976 graduate of the University of Maryland, he received a Ph.D. in biophysics from Penn in 1985.

Over the next five years, the award will support an Interdisciplinary Science project on "Meso-scale Optical Brain Imaging of Perceptual Learning."

The proposal was prepared by Penn faculty from bioengineering, neuroscience, and physics. Co-PI's are Kwabena Boahen, IME, and assistant professor of bioengineering; Diego Contreras and Brian Salzberg, neuroscience; and Arjun Yodh, IME, and professor of physics. Supporting Scientists are George Gerstein and Larry Palmer from neuroscience.

 IHGT's Animal Labs-FDA Letter

Dr. James M. Wilson received a "Warning Letter" from the Food and Drug Administration on July 3, and he and Institute for Human Gene Therapy will respond, according to Director of University Communications Ken Wildes. (The FDA has requested a response in writing in 15 business days.)

Many of the issues raised in the "Warning Letter" were being addressed at the time of the FDA audit, Mr. Wildes said, and IHGT has made substantial progress since that time. The toxicology studies, he said, represent only a small part of the animal model work conducted at IHGT.

Dr. Wilson, IHGT and the University of Pennsylvania continues to take the FDA's ongoing review very seriously, and IHGT continues to cooperate, fully and completely, with the agency.

Preventing Diabetic Kidney Failure

Researchers at the School of Medicine have demonstrated in an animal model that diabetic kidney failure is triggered by a protein that can be neutralized, thus effectively blocking the development of kidney disease.

Dr. Fuad Ziyadeh is principal investigator of the study and professor of medicine. "To our knowledge, this is the first proof-of-concept study to establish that kidney disease in diabetes is caused by this growth-factor protein. This research addresses both juvenile and adult-onset diabetes," explains Dr. Ziyadeh, of the Renal-Electrolyte and Hypertension Division in HUP. For the complete story click here.

Almanac, Vol. 47, No. 1, July 18, 2000