People Who Give

Patients and Friends

Hwaiin Lee

Hwalin Lee, PhD '66

Hwalin Lee, PhD '66, generously donated $1 million to establish the first Chancellor’s Endowed Fellowship in the Graduate Division. "When I came to UCSF it was the best school in the world – and still is. And I was supported all the way through with a fellowship. I made this gift to thank UCSF for giving me the opportunity to study here and for giving me financial support."

The Rodondis

Kevin Rodondi, PharmD '85, and Lisa Rodondi, PharmD '84

Husband-and-wife alumni Kevin Rodondi, PharmD '85, and Lisa Rodondi, PharmD '84, matched Chancellor Desmond-Hellmann's challenge gift to create the first $500,000 Chancellor's Endowed Scholarship Fund in the School of Pharmacy. "I think it’s very important that we as pharmacists and alumni step up our level of giving to support the future practitioners and leaders," says Kevin. "We just hope it catches on."

Nancy Mahon

Playing the HIV/AIDS Prevention Game

To Nancy Mahon, the fact that half of all new HIV infections are in people under the age of 24 is nothing short of tragic. "We don’t have a cure for HIV/AIDS, the available drugs have numerous major side effects and are time-limited in their effectiveness, and yet there’s been an enormous lack of public funding for prevention," says the senior vice president of MAC Cosmetics and executive director of the MAC AIDS Fund. "The bottom line is we continue to lose the battle in terms of HIV prevention." Read more


Giving Patients a Boost

Thanks to the Safeway Foundation, every breast or prostate cancer patient at UCSF now has an easier time accessing vital resources.

"Receiving a cancer diagnosis is challenging enough. Safeway CEO Steve Burd and the Safeway Foundation are helping us to improve the experience for all breast and prostate cancer patients during this difficult time," explains Kathy Balestreri, senior director of Patient Services. Read more

Child Life Services Gets a Hand from PLUS Foundation

Every year 6,000 children are admitted to UCSF Children's Hospital. Its Child Life Services (CLS) department prepares the children for their hospital stay, provides resources for their families, and hosts programming such as a patient schoolroom, playroom, musician-in-residence and computer room. Read more

Ved and Santosh Khosla

Helping Where It Counts

African drums, elephant tusks, zebra skin, leopard skin with head, python skin, and a coat of arms granted by Her Majesty the Queen. These items adorn the home of Ved and Santosh Khosla.

After earning their degrees abroad – he in dental surgery in England and Scotland, she in medicine in India – in 1957 they returned to the part of the world they called home: East Africa. Read more

Answering the Call

The UCSF School of Dentistry saw a need for an implant program for its predoctoral students. As dental implants become more common, restoring and treatment planning for implants are becoming increasingly valuable services for general dentists to provide. UCSF wanted to equip students with this expertise – historically handled by specialists like prosthodontists – to give them a competitive edge when they graduate into the work force. Read more


Friends of Friends

Bay Area residents are recruiting friends to join a group supporting the work of a UCSF neurologist who is changing the way hospitals handle neurologic illness.

Imagine bringing your aged mother to the hospital for a broken bone and while there, she suffers an unexpected bout of delirium. She doesn't know where she is or recognize anyone around her. Panic creeps in and she must be restrained for safety. Imagine, too, that there are no neurologists immediately available so the best the staff can do is sedate your mom and wait. Read more

New Hope for Autism

Elliott Sherr, MD, PhD, had a problem. The UCSF professor of neurology's laboratory was investigating the MRI studies of patients with a genetic defect known as agenesis of the corpus callosum (ACC), which often results in affected children having autism. His hope was to learn what causes ACC, and thereby autism, by studying the disease's genetics and biology. Read more

Jesse Sandoval

Riding for Dad

Last September, a group of 150 motorcyclists took to the road to remember a man, a disease, and the help his family received during a difficult journey.

The man was Jesse Sandoval, a fun-loving DJ from Fresno, and his disease, Alzheimer's. His daughter Sandy organized the "Ride to Remember," a 100-mile excursion through the Valley to raise funds for UCSF Fresno Alzheimer's & Memory Center. Read more

Alpha Eta Chapter, Sigma Theta Tau International

UCSF connection: Alpha Eta Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) established at UCSF in 1964

Currently: Awards $19,000 annually: $15,000 in research grants and $2,000 in leadership grants for members; $2,000 to Tau Lambda-at-Large, STTI, which comprises 15 schools of nursing in sub-Saharan Africa Read more

Compounding Makes a Comeback

Pat Sparacino '74, 2007-2009 Alpha Eta President

UCSF connection: Alpha Eta Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI) established at UCSF in 1964

Currently: Awards $19,000 annually: $15,000 in research grants and $2,000 in leadership grants for members; $2,000 to Tau Lambda-at-Large, STTI, which comprises 15 schools of nursing in sub-Saharan Africa Read more

WHP Gives Life and Love

Cassandra Steptoe was scared and ashamed. It was 1987, just six years after the beginning of the AIDS epidemic, when she was diagnosed with HIV.

She was working as a prostitute in Seaside, Calif., and shooting a lot of dope. As Steptoe watched all of the women in her community pass away, she kept her positive status a secret. "I thought I was going to die, too," she says. But she kept on living. Read more

Deb Mosley

Taking Her Diagnosis by the Horns

Shortly after Deb Mosley learned her breast cancer had metastasized to her brain, she hiked the Grand Canyon. "Most people wouldn't even get out of bed," says Mosley's oncologist Hope Rugo, MD. "She was pretty amazing." Read more


A Port in a Storm

Kathie Forte never expected that it would be her husband's final weekend. They had come to the hospital late the previous night because John's cancer – which he had been defiantly battling off and on for the past few years – was furiously relapsing. It had spread to his brain and spine and the neurosurgeon on duty that night had decided it was beyond operable. Read more


Betty Furuta

Betty Furuta '57

In 1957, Professor Marion Kalkman, one of the foremost psychiatric nursing educators of her time, approached Betty Furuta (née Sasaki) and offered her a grant to pursue graduate education in psychiatric nursing. "She told me, 'You have great potential,'" Furuta recalls. "I wanted to know what the catch was." Read more

Meg Wallhagen

Meg Wallhagen '71

UCSF connection: Bachelor’s degree in 1970, master’s degree in 1971; joined the UCSF faculty in 1988

First job out of school: Worked at Stamford Hospital in Connecticut after nursing program at St. Luke’s Hospital in New York; taught at California State University, Chico after UCSF

Currently: Director of the UCSF/John A. Hartford Center of Geriatric Nursing Excellence Read more

Class of 1961 Scholarship Fund

Tuition at the UCSF School of Dentistry has increased more than 7,000 percent over the past 50 years. If everything else followed suit, milk would now cost $75/gallon and a night at the movies for two would set you back about a hundred dollars, not including popcorn and a drink. Read more

Troy Daniels '67

Troy Daniels has been giving to UCSF almost since he graduated. Some of his more significant gifts have come since the 1990s when he was working in the dean's office under Charles Bertolami. "The dean did something quite smart," recalls Daniels. Read more

Mark Wandro

Mark Wandro '77

UCSF connection: Bachelor's degree in 1977, recently elected vice president of the Nursing Alumni Association

First job out of school: Rehab nurse at the Garden Sullivan Rehab Center on Geary in San Francisco

Currently: RN and electronic health records trainer at Mills Peninsula Health Services in Burlingame, Calif. Read more

Harry and Diana Hind

Harry and Diana Hind

An implantable artificial kidney. One that will not only filter blood, but perform other functions of the natural kidney. That's what therapeutic bioengineer Shuvo Roy, PhD, is working on these days.

It's Roy's way of addressing the great shortage of transplantable kidneys available to the growing population of patients suffering from end-stage renal disease. "We want to eliminate dialysis ultimately," he says. Read more

Donors Reflect

Best Advice Ever Received: I had the rare privilege of meeting Mother Teresa in Bangladesh while working for Health Volunteers Overseas. She told me, in short, not to worry about trying to solve the problems of the millions of unfortunates in the world, but do what you can for the person in front of you. Read more

Benson & Wells

Friends were incredulous when they first heard that Ken and Chris were going to be married. The two came from very different backgrounds and were an unlikely pair. Read more

Marjorie Maddux

Marjorie Maddux

Marjorie Maddux knows the value of a good education and she feels like she got her money's worth at UCSF. The School of Pharmacy Class of '45 graduate describes her experience at UCSF with two simple syllables: "A1."

Born and raised in Chico, Calif., Maddux returned there in 1951 after five years in Berkeley to work for "a family-oriented store that took care of people." Read more

Kay Yamagata

Kay Yamagata

Kay Yamagata, PharmD '64, started out as a shy young girl whose father suggested she become a secretary. Now she's a pharmacist-in-charge, globe-trotting lecturer and disaster volunteer.

She credits her transformation to the UCSF School of Pharmacy. "I wasn't the smartest student," she chuckles, "but I set out to do the best within my ability." Read more