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Awards, appointments, and other news

Compiled by Adam Overland




August 21

To submit U of M staff or faculty for consideration in People, contact the Brief editor. For more information, see award & appointment submission guidelines.


School of Pharmacy honors

Chris Jolowsky has been named president-elect of the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists. Jolowsky recently served on the ASHP Board of Directors and the ASHP ACO Task Force. She is the recipient of the Hallie Bruce Award and the Hugh Kabat Award from MSHP. She has also received the Outstanding Practice Manager recognition and Fellowship recognition in ASHP.

Sarah Westberg has been awarded Fellow status by the American College of Clinical Pharmacy, which recognizes and rewards the highest levels of excellence in the practice and science of clinical pharmacy.


U in the News: A selection of U faculty and staff in the news as appearing daily in Today's News.

How to soothe school anxiety
As the countdown gets closer to the first day of school, your child may show apprehension in many ways. Yvonne Gentzler, associate professor of family, youth and community at the University of Minnesota, comments. Star Tribune.

Home gardeners' new plants could be killing off bees
An environmental group said Wednesday that many home gardeners may be unknowingly hurting the bee population, as the insects' numbers continue to decline. U of M bee expert Vera Krischik comments. WCCO TV.

Best ways to ramp up to a marathon
Doctors and running coaches advise beginners to transition slowly when gearing up to run a marathon. Bill Roberts, U of M Medical School, weighs in. Wall Street Journal.

Gophers coach Jerry Kill tackles epilepsy at pivotal point in his career
U of M head football coach Jerry Kill discusses managing his epilepsy ahead of the 2013 football season. U of M Athletic Director Norwood Teague and Dr. Ilo Leppik, a U of M professor of pharmacy and neurology, are quoted. Star Tribune.

It's time to address Minnesota's 'innovation deficit'
Brian Herman, vice president for research at the U of M, comments on Minnesota's innovation deficit. MinnPost.

Urging your partner to diet may backfire
Urging a partner to diet may seem like a supportive thing to do, but a new study finds it can trigger unhealthy habits such as fasting and taking diet pills. Researcher Marla Eisenberg, an associate professor of adolescent health and medicine at the U of M, comments. WBTV.

2013 CIO of the Year honorees announced
The Minneapolis-St. Paul Business Journal has announced the winners of its third-annual CIO of the Year Awards, to be presented next month. Among the winners is Scott Studham of the University of Minnesota. Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.

University of Minnesota butterfly expert confronts monarch decline
Monarch butterflies may be struggling, but University of Minnesota scientist Karen Oberhauser has dedicated her life to their study and preservation. Star Tribune.


August 7

To submit U of M staff or faculty for consideration in People, contact the Brief editor. For more information, see award & appointment submission guidelines.


African American men’s health center

A $13.5 million grant will create a new center at the University of Minnesota designed to address health disparities in conditions impacting African American men. The center is a joint academic venture between the University of Minnesota and the University of Alabama, Birmingham.

The grant was awarded by the National Institutes for Health’s National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities and will fund the center over five years. Selwyn Vickers, chairman of the Department of Surgery, and Badrinath Konety, chairman of the Department of Urology, will lead the project at the University of Minnesota.

The National Transdisciplinary Collaborative Center for African American Men’s Health will be dedicated to developing, implementing and evaluating interventions to improve the health of African American men. The program will target disparities in unintentional and violence-related injuries as well as chronic diseases like cardiovascular disease, cancer and stroke.

Academic-community partnerships will be integral to the program, particularly in identifying issues of importance to the African American community, as well as implementing treatments and interventions on a community level.

Several national collaborators have signed on to the project: The National USA Foundation, Inc. (NUFI), 100 Black Men of America, Inc. (The 100) and the Minnesota Vikings of the National Football League.

The center will have physical locations on the campuses of both University of Minnesota and University of Alabama-Birmingham. For more information, see Health Talk.

Record number of startups in FY 2013

A natural anti-inflammatory compound, a smartphone-based breathalyzer, and a plastic bead that cuts off the blood supply to cancerous tumors are just three promising University of Minnesota technologies that were used to launch a record 14 startup companies in fiscal year 2013. Last year, 12 startup companies were launched, breaking the previous year’s record of nine.

Since the Office for Technology Commercialization’s Venture Center was formed in 2006, a total of 52 startup companies have been created. Of that number, 41, or nearly 80 percent, of the companies are still active—a high success rate considering a 2012 study by Harvard Business School’s Shikhar Ghosh showing that 75 percent of all startups fail.

Based on current activity in the Venture Center, the pace of startup creation will not be letting up anytime soon. Another five startups are already in the negotiation stage and are on track to launch in the first few months of fiscal year 2014. An additional 19 technologies are in various stages of the startup pipeline. For more information, see the news release.

Bloomfield photos at Minnesota Museum of American Art

The photographs of retired faculty member Vic Bloomfield are the subject of an upcoming exhibition at the Minnesota Museum of American Art. In the early 1970s, Vic Bloomfield turned his lens on dozens of local artists who were part of what would turn out to be a defining moment in the Minnesota arts scene. The exhibition opens Aug. 15.


U in the News: A selection of U faculty and staff in the news as appearing daily in Today's News.

Obituary: Dr. Ted Thompson, children's physician and U professor
Joseph Neglia, head of the U’s Pediatrics Department, and U of M Medical School students are quoted in an obituary for Dr. Ted Thompson, who passed away last week. Star Tribune.

No lotus position needed: Neuroscience pushes meditation into the mainstream
Businesses, schools and hospitals not only have become more accepting of meditation, but many offer classes on it. Meditating has gone mainstream. Mary Jo Kreitzer, founder and director of the Center for Spirituality and Healing at the U of M, comments. Sioux City Journal.

Raise your own bees through a University of Minnesota program
The U of M Department of Entomology's Bee Lab program "Hive to Bottle" gives hands-on training to beekeepers and establishes new colonies around the Twin Cities. Professor Marla Spivak comments. Star Tribune.

GPS devices may not be all that accurate
Max Donath, director of the University of Minnesota’s Intelligent Transportation Systems Institute, comments on the the unreliability of GPS systems. Star Tribune.

Thank Republicans for gay marriage in Minnesota
Larry Jacobs, a political science professor and elections expert at the U of M, comments on the legalization of gay marriage in Minnesota. TIME.

U releases 2014 bonding requests
The University of Minnesota is gearing up for the 2014 legislative session with a $230 million preliminary bonding bill request. Minnesota Daily.

Say on executive pay: Thumbs up -- or thumb in the eye
Ian Maitland, a business ethics professor at the U of M’s Carlson School of Management. comments on the issue of executive pay. Star Tribune.

U of M works to expose minority kids to higher education
KSTP profiles the U of M's William "Tex" Ostvig and his Kids on Campus program. KSTP TV.

The Male Brain: What's really going on in there
The more science learns about how men are different from women, the more we find ourselves hoping it will finally explain some age-old mysteries. Douglas Hartmann, associate professor of sociology at the University of Minnesota, comments. Huffington Post.

The Death Cafe discussion group steers its members on how to live
A newly formed group dedicated to discussing the end of life actually helps its members learn how to live more fully. Jean M. Langford, an associate professor of anthropology at the U of M, comments. Star Tribune.

Farmers adjust fertilizer for cleaner water at home and downstream
Some Minnesota farmers are taking steps to reduce the amount of fertilizer reaching state waterways. Gyles Randall, a U of M soil scientist and professor emeritus, comments. MPR.