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UC Davis Medicine - Logo
The institution's principal publication for alumni, friends and physicians.
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  D E P A R T M E N T S  
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DEPARTMENTS
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PORTRAITS OF GIVING:

Patient Experience Prompts Planned Gift
Banking on Children Fund Supports Effective Parent-Child Therapy at UC Davis
Researcher Investigates Life-Threatening Cardiac Arrhythmias
New Assistant Dean for Health Sciences Advancement
Medical Student Surprised with $10,000 Scholarship


Patient Experience Prompts Planned Gift

Patient experience prompts home-builder couple to make planned gift to ophthalmology

 "" PHOTO — Jim Streng  ""
 
Jim Streng
 
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In the Sacramento region, the Streng family name has iconic significance. Between 1957 and 1986, Streng Bros. Homes, operated by Jim and his brother, Bill, built 3,800 modernistic homes in Sacramento and Yolo counties.

Jim Streng placed his imprint on the region not only in the neighborhoods he and his brother built, but also by setting public policy. Jim served as a member of the Sacramento County Planning Commission, which led to his 1986 election to the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors, on which he served until 1992. He was instrumental in adoption of a countywide smoking restriction ordinance and a sale tax increase to help fund improvements in roads and public transit.

Less public, though, has been Jim's involvement with UC Davis Health System. Since 1996, he and his wife, Mary Jo, have been members of the UC Davis Health System Leadership Council, a group of 260 supporters and donors who help provide scholarships for medical students and act as ambassadors for the institution.

Earlier this year, the couple became part of another elite UC Davis group – the Heritage Circle – by virtue of naming UC Davis a beneficiary of their estate. They designated their planned gift for the Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Science, attributable to Jim's successful cataract removal surgery several years ago.

"Although complications could have occurred in my case, none did. Following the surgery, I was able to see better than I ever did," Jim said.

In late May, he underwent cardiac bypass and aortic valve replacement surgery at UC Davis. "His recovery is going very well," said Mary Jo, a singer who performs with several local jazz bands.

Streng homes were distinguished by flat or lowpitched gable rooflines, open floor plans, generous use of glass, and rectangular design elements that epitomized the ideal of sleek 1950s modernism, reminiscent of Frank Lloyd Wright designs. Streng homes built nearly a half-century ago remain prized for their design integrity.

The Streng brothers no longer build homes and, instead, manage warehouses and office buildings. Moreover, with their estate plans in place, Jim and Mary Jo, who live in Fair Oaks, are spending time their three sons and five grandchildren, all of whom live in the Sacramento area.

"I have been extremely pleased since I switched my medical care to the UC Davis Medical Group. I believe that Sacramento's two greatest attributes are the American River Bike Trail and the UC Davis Health System," said Jim

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Banking on Children Fund Supports Effective Parent-Child Therapy at UC Davis

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Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT), a technique developed at UC Davis Health System, has proven effective in defusing confrontational relationships between children and their parents, adoptive or foster families.

Through the PCIT program, UC Davis child behavioral specialists coach parents in techniques to discourage aggressive behavior and improve communication with their children, while teaching them how to control their own tempers in response to children's actions. Unfortunately, financial support to conduct widespread PCIT training for community services agencies has been insufficient.

In response, Placer Sierra Bank launched a fundraising initiative called Banking on Change for Children to establish an endowed fund that will support the PCIT program. The bank pledged the lead gift of $50,000 and challenged other businesses in the region to contribute. Anthony Urquiza, who oversees the UC Davis program, hopes the fund will lead to eventual establishment of an endowed chair that will broaden and strengthen the PCIT program.

"A total of $12.2 billion is spent per year on child mental health outpatient services in the United States, Most mental health providers deliver client services with no demonstrated effectiveness, due to lack of models or programs to train community mental health providers in evidence-based mental health practices," said Urquiza.

"PCIT is very effective in treating aggressiveness," he added. "Our PCIT Training Center has performed training for more than 50 community mental health agencies throughout California, the United States, and several countries."

He hopes that Placer Sierra Bank's gift ultimately will help make PCIT techniques universally available.

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Researcher Investigates Life-Threatening Cardiac Arrhythmias

Among people with heart ailments, sudden cardiac death due to abnormalities in cardiac rhythm is one of the most frightening prospects. Despite the availability of medications for various heart conditions, few drugs are effective for treatment of cardiac arrhythmias.

UC Davis research physician Nipavan Chiamvimonvat, a specialist in cardiac rhythm abnormalities, is investigating the cellular and molecular mechanisms leading to arrhythmias. She is conducting electrophysiological studies of membrane proteins implicated in irregularities in cardiac rhythm.

Chiamvimonvat holds the Roger Tatarian Professorship in Cardiovascular Medicine, established this past May by the estates of H. Roger and Eunice Elizabeth Tatarian of Fresno. Eunice died in 2005, Her husband, Roger, who had been editor-in-chief of United Press International as well as a Fresno Bee columnist, had died 10 years earlier.

Endowed professorships, which can be established with a gift of $1 million or more, provide a continual source of funding for a designated program through interest earnings. The Roger Tatarian Professorship financially supports Chiamvimonvat's effort to develop a multidisciplinary and collaborative research initiative in cardiovascular biology at UC Davis.

Chiamvimonvat hopes such a program will lead to development of new treatments for cardiac arrhythmias. Her initiative embodies training of undergraduate and graduate students and research fellows to encourage them to further advance cardiovascular medical research.

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 "" PHOTO — Stephanie R. M. Bray.  ""
 
Stephanie R. M. Bray.
 
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New Assistant Dean for Health Sciences Advancement

After an extensive national search, Stephanie R. M. Bray has been appointed assistant dean for Health Sciences Advancement at UC Davis Health System. Bray will lead the health system's fundraising initiatives and oversee donor relations, stewardship protocols, gift processing and philanthropic goals.

A fundraising professional with nearly 20 years' experience working with local, regional and national nonprofit organizations, Bray joined UC Davis from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey late last year. She served as development officer for UC Davis Cancer Center, overseeing a $35 million capital initiative.

"Since joining the health system, Stephanie has greatly advanced the Cancer Center's fundraising efforts and quickly gained the trust and respect of her colleagues and the faculty with whom she has worked, emerging as a leader in the Office of Health Sciences Advancement," said Claire Pomeroy, vice chancellor for Human Health Sciences at UC Davis and dean of the School of Medicine. "I am delighted that we have found the ideal candidate within our organization for this critical position, and I am confident that Stephanie will capably lead us in our efforts to raise funds for the important initiatives under way within the health system."

At the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Bray served as director of major gifts for the Cancer Institute of New Jersey. She has also worked for the American Cancer Society; UNCF/The College Fund; and Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic, where she served as director of the group's 50th Anniversary Capital Campaign to raise $35 million.

In addition, Bray is the immediate past president of Women in Development of Mercer County, N.J., and past president of the Trenton, N.J., Trinity Cathedral School board of trustees.

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Medical Student Surprised with $10,000 Scholarship

UC Davis medical student Amy Harley expected nothing more than a nice meal and pleasant conversation when she and her husband, Bill, arrived at a Sacramento restaurant for a lunch meeting. Amerish Bera, assistant dean of Admissions and Outreach in the Office of Medical Education, had extended the invitation. However, luncheon guests also included retired radiological physician Daniel Terry and his wife, Virginia. During lunch, the Terrys informed Amy that she had been selected to receive a $10,000 scholarship.

Amy Harley had become the first recipient of the Daniel Terry, M.D., and Virginia (Jinny) Terry Endowed Scholarship, which they established last year to benefit second- and third-year UC Davis medical students. Unlike traditional scholarship programs for which students must apply, the Terry Scholarship has the element of surprise.

"The lunch presentation was a very touching event," said Bera, who explained that academic excellence and significant scientific promise are criteria for the award.

"I was shocked," said Harley, who is considering a career in primary-care medicine. "The Terrys were so gracious and kind. One of most powerful things to me was the message their gift communicated – that they believed and saw promise in me." The School of Medicine's Financial Aid Office applied the scholarship amount against Harley's student loan balance.

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  FOR INFORMATION
about ways to donate your estate to UC Davis Health System, including bequests, charitable remainder trusts and gift annuities, please contact Health Sciences Advancement at (916) 734-9400.  
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UC DAVIS SCHOOL OF MEDICINE
PUBLIC AFFAIRS
4900 Broadway, Suite #1200
Sacramento, CA 95820

ucdavismedicine@ucdmc.ucdavis.edu

© 2006 UC Regents. All rights reserved.

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