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T. Denny Sanford

T. Denny Sanford

T. Denny Sanford
South Dakota businessman and Philanthropist

Denny Sanford was born in St. Paul, Minnesota. Young Denny developed an early work ethic during his summers, working in his father's clothing distribution company. His mother died of breast cancer when he was four; and his father and an older brother both died of heart disease at a young age.

After graduating from the University of Minnesota in 1958, Denny proved to be a successful entrepreneur. He had a career in sales, marketing and materials distribution. He then established Contech Inc., a Minneapolis-based national company that manufactured sealants, coatings and adhesives. The company employed 350 people, including a chemical laboratory with 13 chemists, developing products for large architectural buildings. Mr. Sanford subsequently sold Contech, and started a venture capital company.

In 1986, he purchased United National Corporation in Sioux Falls, SD (now First PREMIER Bank), and later added a newly-formed credit card company (PREMIER Bankcard). The success of these two companies has helped the economy of South Dakota and created more than 3,000 jobs within the state.

Upon forming his foundation for charitable giving in 2001, Mr. Sanford established himself as one of the country's leading philanthropists. His initial focus was to help sick, disadvantaged, abused and/or neglected children. To that end, he has been a long-time supporter of the Children's Home Society in South Dakota. He also donated money to build the Sanford Children's Hospital in Sioux Falls, as well as the T. Denny Sanford Mayo Clinic Pediatric Center in Rochester MN; and the T. Denny Sanford Pediatric Center at Florida Hospital for Children. He also donated funds to the University of South Dakota Sanford School of Medicine for their new pediatric residency program. Mr. Sanford's attention subsequently turned to the fields of scientific and medical research. He supports the Sanford Underground Research Facility in Lead, South Dakota and the new Dakota State University's cyber science program. He also donated substantially to the Sioux Valley Health System in Sioux Falls (now Sanford Health), whose major initiatives include developing children's clinics worldwide and whose research center focuses on finding a cure for Type 1 diabetes. With his further help, they also opened the Edith Sanford Breast Cancer Research Center. In California, he has provided leadership philanthropic support to the Sanford Burnham Prebys (SBP) Medical Discovery Institute, the Sanford Consortium for Regenerative Medicine, the Salk Institute, the Sanford Stem Cell Center at UC San Diego, San Diego Public Library, the Zoological Society of San Diego, National University (which houses the Sanford Institute of Philanthropy and the Sanford College of Education, featuring the Sanford Inspire and Harmony programs. Other major areas of funding around the country include his alma mater's football program, Roundup River Ranch in Vail, CO and Arizona State University's teacher education programs and gender harmony projects. Mr. Sanford's total giving to date is more than $1.6 billion. He has been recognized in various publications for his philanthropy, and has been the recipient of numerous prestigious awards, among them the Horatio Alger Association's Distinguished American Award.

David Brenner, MD

David A. Brenner, MD

David A. Brenner, MD
Vice Chancellor for Health Sciences
UC San Diego

David Brenner is vice chancellor for health sciences at University of California San Diego. In this role, he leads the School of Medicine, Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences and UC San Diego Health. A distinguished physician-scientist and leader in the field of gastroenterological research, Brenner first joined UC San Diego Health in 1985 as a gastroenterology fellow, later returning to become part of the School of Medicine faculty and a physician at Veterans Affairs (VA) San Diego Healthcare System. Brenner also served as a Pew Scholar in biomedical sciences and a clinical investigator in the VA system. He was previously professor and chief of the Division of Digestive Diseases and Nutrition at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He was recruited to UC San Diego Health from Columbia University Medical Center College of Physicians and Surgeons, where from 2003 to 2007, he was Samuel Bard Professor and chair of the Department of Medicine, a member of the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, a member of the Columbia University Institute of Nutrition, and physician-in-chief of New York Presbyterian Hospital/ Columbia. Brenner's professional memberships include the American Society for Clinical Investigation; the Association of American Physicians, for which he is currently President-Elect; the American College of Physicians; the American Gastroenterological Association; and the American Clinical and Climatological Association. He is also on the board of directors of two philanthropic foundations: the AlphaOne Foundation and the Alcoholic Beverage Medical Research Foundation. Brenner has published numerous scholarly papers and served on multiple editorial boards. He earned his medical degree from the Yale University School of Medicine. After completing his residency at Yale-New Haven Medical Center, he served as a research associate in the genetics and biochemistry branch of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

William C. Mobley, MD, PhD

William Mobley, MD, PhD

William Mobley, MD, PhD
Distinguished Professor and
Associate Dean of Neurosciences Initiatives
UC San Diego School of Medicine

William Mobley is associate dean of neurosciences initiatives and a Distinguished Professor of Neurosciences at UC San Diego School of Medicine. He serves as executive director of UC San Diego's Down Syndrome Center for Research and Treatment and holds the Florence Riford Chair of Alzheimer's Disease Research. He came to UC San Diego in 2009 from Stanford University, where he served as the John E. Cahill Family Professor in the Department of Neurology and Neurological Sciences and was founding director of the Neuroscience Institute. Mobley's research is focused on degenerative diseases of the central nervous system, especially Down syndrome and Alzheimer's disease. He and his colleagues have for many years explored the hypothesis that deficient axonal transport of neurotrophic factor signals contribute importantly to the pathogenesis of neurodegeneration. Mobley is past president of the Association of University Professors of Neurology; the Professors of Child Neurology and the International Society for Developmental Neuroscience. He is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He is a member of the National Academy of Medicine. He received both the Zenith Award and Temple Award from the Alzheimer's Association and the Cotzias Award from the American Academy of Neurology. In 2007, he received the Christian Pueschel Memorial Research Award, and in 2011 was honored with the International Sisley-Jérôme Lejeune Prize by the Jérôme Lejeune Foundation for his research contributions to Down syndrome and genetic intellectual disabilities. He was inducted into the Johns Hopkins University Society of Scholars in 2014. He currently serves as chair of the Science and Clinical Advisory Committee of the National Down Syndrome Society.

Sunny Smith, MD

Sunny Smith, MD

Sunny Smith, MD
Clinical Professor of Family Medicine and Public Health
Co-Medical Director of the Student-Run Free Clinic
UC San Diego School of Medicine

Sunny Smith is a clinical professor in the Department of Family Medicine and Public Health at UC San Diego School of Medicine, co-directing and teaching several courses spanning the medical school curriculum. She is also co-medical director of the UC San Diego Student-Run Free Clinic Project, with which she has been involved since she was a first-year medical school student at UC San Diego. Additionally, she is an academic community director where she advises one-sixth of each medical school class regarding their personal and professional development. Her interests include underserved medicine, patient advocacy, increasing access to care and medical student education and she combines these passions in her teaching and mentorship duties. Smith has been featured in documentaries on medical student and physician wellness – including The Residents, Suffering in Silence and Do No Harm — and cares deeply about these issues. She has received numerous teaching awards and honors including the Excellence in Teaching award, Humanism in Medicine award and Outstanding Community Leader award. She is a Fellow of the American Academy of Family Physicians. Her work has published in many peer-reviewed journals regarding student-run free clinics, underserved medicine and the medical student learning environment. Smith is an alumna of UC San Diego School of Medicine. She completed her internship at Santa Monica­UCLA and her residency at the Santa Rosa Family Medicine Residency Program where she was chief resident.

Christopher Kane, MD

Christopher Kane, MD

Christopher Kane, MD
Dean of Clinical Affairs for UC San Diego School of Medicine and
Chief Executive Officer for UC San Diego Health Physician Group

Christopher Kane serves as dean of clinical affairs for UC San Diego School of Medicine and chief executive officer for UC San Diego Health Physician Group. In these roles, Kane collaborates with UC San Diego leadership to ensure the Physician Group achieves the highest standards of service, access, quality, safety and patient satisfaction. He also ensures that the group is integrated to support the unique and growing needs of an expanding academic health system and its growing regional network of providers. Kane is chair of the Department of Urology as well as the Joseph D. Schmidt MD Presidential Chair in Urology. Kane has authored more than 320 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters with a focus on prostate cancer risk factors and outcomes, prostate cancer surgery and minimally invasive surgery for prostate and kidney cancer. He serves on the editorial boards of several major urology journals as well as the National Comprehensive Cancer Network Prostate Cancer Management Guidelines Committee. He co-chaired the National Cancer Institute's Renal Cell Carcinoma Advisory Task Force from 2012 to 2016. Prior to joining UC San Diego Health, Kane held leadership positions at UC San Francisco and the Naval Medical Center San Diego. He was awarded the Distinguished Engineering Alumni Medal by UC Davis in 2011. In 2014, he was elected to membership in the American Association of Genitourinary Surgeons. He is a retired captain in the United States Navy and a decorated veteran of Operation Desert Storm. Kane completed his residency at the Naval Medical Center in Oakland, CA. He received his medical degree from Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences and is board-certified in urology.

Christopher Cannavino, MD

Christopher Cannavino, MD

Christopher Cannavino, MD
Associate Professor of Clinical Pediatrics
UC San Diego School of Medicine

Dr. Christopher Cannavino is an associate professor of clinical pediatrics in the Division of Infectious Diseases within the Department of Pediatrics at UC San Diego School of Medicine. He spends his clinical time on the infectious diseases inpatient service at Rady Children's Hospital - San Diego (RCHSD). Cannavino is heavily involved in the teaching and mentorship of medical students and residents. He is a two-time recipient of the Department of Pediatrics Teaching Award and was recently awarded the RCHSD Physician of Excellence Career Award in Teaching. As director of pediatric medical student education at UC San Diego School of Medicine, he oversees the Pediatric Master Clinician Program, the MS3 Core Pediatrics Clerkship and the MS4 Inpatient Pediatrics Subinternship. He is also the associate program director of the UC San Diego School of Medicine Pediatric Residency Program, where he directs the residency curriculum and inpatient wards, medical education and global health programs. His research interests involve bacterial pathogenesis, pathogen/host interactions, anti-infective development and medical education –the latter of which addresses the development of novel delivery methods for medical education, such as the Pediatric Master Clinician Program and the Pediatric Learning Module Program. Cannavino earned his Bachelor of Science degree in psychobiology at UCLA and his medical degree at UC San Diego School of Medicine. He did his pediatric residency and chief residency at UC San Diego Health, and also completed a dual fellowship in pediatric infectious diseases and pediatric hospital medicine at UC San Diego School of Medicine and RCHSD.

Cinnamon Bloss, PhD

Cinnamon Bloss, PhD

Cinnamon Bloss, PhD
Associate Professor of Psychiatry
Family Medicine and Public Health
UC San Diego School of Medicine

Cinnamon Bloss is an associate professor in the Department of Psychiatry and in the Division of Health Policy within the Department Family Medicine and Public Health at UC San Diego School of Medicine. She holds a joint appointment as a policy analyst at the J. Craig Venter Institute and is a licensed clinical psychologist. Bloss' current research focuses on the individual and societal impacts of emerging biomedical technologies. Her background is in clinical psychology, statistical genetics, genomic medicine, biomedical ethics and health policy. She has conducted both candidate-gene and genome-wide association studies of neurocognitive phenotypes, as well as empirical work on biomedical ethics topics in the areas of genetic testing, genome sequencing, and wireless sensors. Prior to joining UC San Diego, Bloss was director of social sciences and bioethics at the Scripps Translational Science Institute, where she was a member of the Scripps Clinical and Translational Science Award Executive Committee. Bloss has previously been the principal investigator of a National Institutes of Health/NHGRI R21 grant to study consumer psychological and behavioral response to direct-to-consumer genomic testing. From this work, she published a seminal article in the New England Journal of Medicine and presented invited testimony based on the findings before a Food and Drug Administration advisory panel to inform consumer genomics policy. She has been a co­investigator on several previously funded National Institutes of Health grants and has published more than 50 papers since earning her doctorate. Bloss has mentored more than 20 students, ranging from high school learners to postdoctoral fellows.