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1981 - 25th reunion

Yale Medicine Magazine, 2006 - Autumn


Our reunion had strong competition from parental duties and academic obligations. Appropriately, high school and college graduations, final exams, and a national oncology meeting took precedence for most of us. Nevertheless, more than a dozen of our intrepid classmates and their guests journeyed to rainy New Haven for a most enjoyable reunion weekend. We settled down to a wonderful get-together on Saturday night at the Quinnipiack Club. It was a great opportunity to share our memories of Yale, renew friendships and recount our experiences over the past two and a half decades.

David Lebwohl drove from Madison, N.J., where he is involved in clinical development of new cancer drugs for Novartis. When not traveling overseas, David is in his garden, at concerts, near the ocean or on the tennis court. Jonah (Kalu) Odim was accompanied by wife Tracy and adorable young sons—Jonathan, 5, and Emmanuel, 2. Now with an M.B.A. to complement his M.D./Ph.D., Jonah is crossing the continent and relocating his cardiac surgery practice at UCLA to the NIH, where his duties will combine his clinical and business skills. It was a treat to see Bernie Lewin and wife Terri Haberman, who is an optometrist. With their oldest son Craig at Penn State, Bernie’s “harem” includes 13-, 14-, and 16-year-old daughters. Bernie is in private practice in radiology near Philadelphia. We enjoyed hearing about his exploits on his motorcycle and other adventures. Dovelet Shashou, accompanied by husband Jonathan Trambert with camera in hand, snapped plenty of pictures and spoke about her most recent avocation: tango lessons!! Dovelet continues to practice pediatric ophthalmology in New York City.

Class agent Anthony Urbano and wife Camille M.C. Qualtere are living in Bethlehem, Pa., where Tony is doing interventional cardiology as part of a nine-person cardiology group. They have three teenagers at home who keep them quite busy. Tony has been involved in successful thoroughbred breeding and racing. He enjoys gardening, which affords him the time to relax and solve problems. Mike Nerenberg was accompanied by wife Lynne, who is an internationally renowned Arabic dancer! Mike is a biotech executive in La Jolla, Calif. His hobbies include riding his Harley, welding, archery and puffing on Cuban cigars.

It was great to see Mark Kasper and wife Donna. Mark is in private practice in internal medicine in East Haven, Conn. Together they share their passion for antiquing, such as collecting Murano glass, as well as exploring ethnic restaurants locally and in Manhattan. Worldwide traveler, radio celebrity and wine connoisseur Christine Duranceau was accompanied by husband Richard Zakrzewski. Christine has moved from California to the resort area of Galena, Ill. When not practicing emergency medicine in Platteville, Wis., she is politically active, both as president of the Wisconsin chapter of the American College of Emergency Physicians and the Northern Illinois chapter of the American Cancer Society. She travels to Washington periodically to consult and testify on health care issues. A Congressional run has not been ruled out!

Fresh from high school and college graduation parties, Lisa Babitz, geriatrician, and husband Stewart Greisman, rheumatologist, live on the West Side of Manhattan, where they share an office. We offer their daughter Laura, 22, a Cornell graduate, our best wishes as she travels to Melbourne on a Fulbright scholarship to spend a year on venom research! Daughter Jill, 18, is heading to Cornell, while son Jack, 14, will be attending Stuyvesant High School. Neil Gross, formerly in Atlanta, is now living in Boston. Charged with enthusiasm, Neil is enjoying “the single life” while practicing ophthalmoplasty. He continues to play guitar. Steve Konstadt, accompanied by wife Jody, a dermatologist, entertained with his tales of extreme snowboarding, windsurfing, sailing and eclectic gourmet cooking. In between enjoying life with Jody and his two daughters, Steve has squeezed in the time to be a professor and chair of anesthesiology at Maimonides Hospital in Brooklyn, edit several textbooks, and train hundreds of residents and fellows during his 20-year academic career. Marilyn Merker, Ph.D. ’83, and our classmate Rob Goldman shared pictures and stories of their life near Milwaukee, Wis. They have a son and daughter. Rob is in private practice in neurology, and Marilyn is a professor of pharmacology at the Medical College of Wisconsin.

Speaking of Wisconsin, reunion social chair Steven Brown and wife Amy are also living near Milwaukee, where he has been in private practice in pulmonary critical care and sleep medicine since 1988. Steve’s two sons are in college, while his daughter, a nationally ranked junior tennis player, is in high school. Steve is in demand nationally as a lecturer on COPD, asthma, respiratory infections and insomnia. Cosmetic and hand surgeon Ines Carrasquillo has moved from Brooklyn to a private group practice in Rochester, N.Y. She has stayed in touch with a number of our classmates. Barb Roach traveled all the way from Hamden, Conn., with her husband, who is a local attorney. Their son and daughter are teenagers. Barb remains in private practice in rheumatology.

Although not able to attend the reunion, I’ve had wonderful communications with many who send their best wishes and fond regards. They include: Lesley Levine, Louann Brizendine, Mark Shoag, Nancy Ross-Ascuitto and Bob Ascuitto, Mark Koruda, Pat Burke, Paula Fracasso, Peter Arvan, Donald Ingber, David Goldfarb, David Paly, Ramona Fung, Richard Kravitz, Stephen Harrison, Alicia Barela, Steve Fugaro, Victor Vaisbort, David Weiss, Francis Chui, Erik Fisher, Annette Guido, Chris Attinger, Dave Gendelman, Brian Kobilka, Elliot Lach and Aziz Laurent.

A PowerPoint presentation of our class is being prepared and will be distributed to our classmates. Please send biographical information as well as any jpeg, bmp, mp3, wav, gif, tif, mim, mov, mpeg or zip files to Steve Brown at

Steven Brown