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Fax & Friends Celebrity Golf Invitational is a dream come true for Brad and Dory Faxon
Thursday, February 05, 2015

Golf ball in grass80 golfers joined 20 celebrities to participate in a golf tournament at the Wannamoisett Country Club in September 2014 to raise funds for 5 benefitting charities, including Faxon Blessings in a Backpack, Edesia, Folds of Honor and YearUp Providence. 

The Norman Prince Neurosciences Institute received $80,435 from the event proceeds to purchase a high-density EEG machine for the Rhode Island Hospital ICU.  This equipment continuously monitors brain function in critically injured patients, and will improve early-warning systems predicting adverse neurological events. 

The Faxon's hope to continue the event in the future.

Maggie’s Miles Raises Nearly $5K for the Alzheimer’s and Memory Disorders Center at RI Hospital during Newport Half-Marathon
Wednesday, October 15, 2014

On Sunday, October 12, more than 50 runners teamed-up to join Margaret (Maggie) Vatter for the Newport Half Marathon as the “Maggie’s Miles” team, raising nearly $5,000 to support the Alzheimer’s and Memory Disorders Center at Rhode Island Hospital.


Maggie VatterDiagnosed with Alzheimer’s at the young age of 48, the Barrington resident and mother of five, now 49, is using her battle with the disease as an opportunity to help others. Family, friends and runners of all ages and ability pledged donations for each mile run by members of the “Maggie’s Miles” team while also cheering them along the 13.1 mile course—all the way to the finish line!


Currently undergoing treatment at the Alzheimer’s and Memory Disorders Center at Rhode Island Hospital, Maggie has recently experienced improvement in her short-term memory function as she dedicates herself to educating others and spreading awareness about a disease that can impact anyone at any age.


[Photo-Right] Running for a Cause: Diagnosed with Alzheimer’s at the age of 48, Maggie Vatter, now 49, ran the Newport Half Marathon on October 12 to raise awareness about the disease while raising funds for The Alzheimer’s and Memory Disorders Center at Rhode Island Hospital.


“Maggie is a true inspiration to so many people who are going through similar challenges in their battles with Alzheimer’s,” says Dr. Brian Ott, Director of The Alzheimer’s and Memory Disorders Center at Rhode Island Hospital. “Just as important as the awareness she’s spread about how the disease can impact people of all ages, the monies raised by her team will help our program immeasurably.” 


Anyone interested in making a donation in honor of Maggie’s Miles to support The Alzheimer’s and Memory Disorders Center at Rhode Island Hospital may do so by clicking here

Maggie's Miles team at Newport half marathon

Power in Numbers: More than 50 runners teamed-up to join Maggie Vatter for the Newport Half Marathon as the “Maggie’s Miles” team, raising nearly $5,000 to support the Alzheimer’s and Memory Disorders Center at Rhode Island Hospital.


Annual LIFEcycle “Ride ‘Round Rhody” Raises $60,000 for Local Cancer Treatment
Monday, August 18, 2014

With a near-perfect summer temperature and picturesque blue skies, more than 100 cyclists and volunteers gathered at Bryant University in Smithfield on Sunday, August 10 to support LIFEcycle’s annual “Ride ‘Round Rhody” Bike-a-Thon to raise funds for Lifespan’s Comprehensive Cancer Center at four of our affiliate hospitals.


This year’s event generated $60,000 for local cancer care and research. Many of the riders and volunteers represented our colleagues from across the Lifespan system.


The all-day, family-friendly event offered participating cyclists their choice of a 25 or 75 mile route, both offering a mix of tree-lined roads, challenging climbs, and some of the best scenery Northern Rhode Island has to offer.


Once riders hit the road following a send-off from the Rhode Island National Guard Honor Guard, volunteers and spectators enjoyed a vendor expo and wellness fair with refreshments and spirited music as they cheered on cyclists.


Now in its sixth year, LIFEcycle has grown to become an important partner of our work, raising more than $285,000 through this inspirational event since 2009.


Riding for a Cause: Since 2009, LIFEcycle’s signature fundraiser, “Ride ‘Round Rhody,” has engaged hundreds of cyclists while raising more than $285,000 in support of Lifespan’s Comprehensive Cancer Center at four of our affiliate hospitals.

Until There’s a Cure: Members of LIFEcycle’s Peloton Pack—riders who raised upwards of $1,000—pose before embarking on their 75 mile course.

(Left to right): George Dys, Judi Donnelly, Kevin Donnelly, Scott Martin, David Carroll, Benjamin Hartley, Dean Pendelton, Craig Jolicoeur, Paula Raposo, Michael Silva, Karen Antons, and LIFEcycle co-founders Dani and Jacob Brier.


Rhode Island Hospital Guild Supports Nursing Education with Generous $25,000 Gift
Wednesday, May 21, 2014

For those who have dedicated themselves to being a nurse, there is perhaps no adage more meaningful than, “Once a nurse; always a nurse.”  At Rhode Island Hospital, it’s a motto that thousands have lived by throughout our storied history. And for Mary Killaron, President of the Rhode Island Hospital Guild, she wouldn’t have it any other way.

“I’ve been retired for years, but my heart is still in this building,”
says Mary. “Having an opportunity to come back with the Guild and support the different departments of the hospital provides me with a lot of personal satisfaction.”

Mary spent decades working at our hospital as a nurse and remembers vividly the impact of attending the National Nurses Conference early in her career. Now thanks to a $25,000 gift from the Guild—a volunteer organization that raises money for our hospital through special fundraising events and other programs—our nurses will have similar opportunities to continue their education and pursuit of the prestigious Magnet status.

Under the leadership of Barbara Riley, RN, Senior Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer for Rhode Island Hospital, the Department of Nursing will use the Guild’s gift to create innovative training and education programs for nurses, offering educational seminars that support certification, access to national conferences, and the development of simulation and nursing research programs.

“This gift offers so many possibilities, all of which will further our hospital’s environment of caring,” says Riley. “One of the things I’m most excited about is bringing nationally-known presenters to Rhode Island Hospital so our nurses can be part of the national conversation about what’s going on in healthcare and nursing across the country.”

One of Riley’s focuses and an area critical to achieving Magnet status—considered the highest recognition for nursing excellence awarded by the American Nurses Credentialing Center—is to enhance not only our already strong commitment to caring for the whole patient, but caring for one another as colleagues.

“Our caregivers are wonderful to our patients and we want to promote the effects of that by furthering the caring environment that exists across the entire Rhode Island Hospital family,” says Riley. “We’re truly focused on creating a culture of caring that extends to everyone.”

Adds Riley, “What the Guild has done for us in making this gift is absolutely amazing. Nurses, like Mary, give back their entire life and we’re so thankful to be the recipient of their generosity to continue the tradition they’ve started.”

A Commitment to Caring:
Paula Tartaglione-Hall (left) of the Rhode Island Hospital Guild and Mary Killaron (right), Rhode Island Hospital Guild President,
present Barbara Riley, RN, Senior Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer for Rhode Island Hospital with a check for $25,000 in support of continuing education
and innovative training opportunities for the hospital’s nursing staff.




The George H. Baker Scholarship Awarded to Kelsi Voisin
Thursday, May 15, 2014

On Friday, May 9, Kelsi L. Voisin became the 14th person to receive The George H. Baker Scholarship Award.  Established in 2000 by Jacqueline (Jackie) Baker in memory of her late husband George, Jackie and her family annually select a Rhode Island Hospital nursing student to receive a $2,000 nursing scholarship.  


Kelsi is a unit secretary in the Hasbro Children’s Hospital Emergency Department where she has held this position since November 2006. She has been accepted into the nursing program at Bristol Community College and will start her first semester in the fall of 2014. Her grandmother was a nurse and she would like to follow in her footsteps.


Nominees for this award must be a Rhode Island Hospital employee for a minimum of one full year and they must currently be pursuing an undergraduate degree or diploma.  Also, the applicant needs to submit three letters of recommendation:  one from a clinical manager, one from a peer, and one from a patient or other health care professional.  The recommendations must validate that the applicant has incorporated compassion, commitment and quality in his or her patient care.


Jackie Baker is a Path Tech Specialist in the Microbiology Lab and her children also work at Rhode Island Hospital.  Jason Baker is a support services coordinator and Leah Palumbo is a pediatric registered nurse. 


Congratulations Kelsi!


Kelsi L. Voisin (L), Jacqueline J. Baker and Max (Jackie's grandson).


To Help Patients Feel Comfortable During Screenings, Gloria Gemma Breast Cancer Resource Foundation Donates 500 “Janes” Gowns to Pappas Center
Friday, May 09, 2014

Special Lightweight Gowns Designed to Provide Maximum Coverage with an Emphasis on Comfort


Each year, more than 25,000 women are seen at the Anne C. Pappas Center for Breast Imaging at Rhode Island Hospital. Now, thanks to the generosity of the Gloria Gemma Breast Cancer Resource Foundation, patients undergoing screening mammograms and other breast procedures will have some extra help to feel more dignified.


On May 8, the Foundation made a special gift in honor of all mothers and daughters by donating 500 hospital gowns called “Janes” to the Pappas Center. The unique gowns were developed by Sharon Linder from GetJanes, LLC and feature the Foundation’s logo opposite that of the Pappas Center and Rhode Island Hospital to help spread awareness on the importance of routine screenings and self-advocacy. Recently, the Foundation has made a similar gift of gowns to the hospital’s dedicated Women’s Inpatient Unit.


“We are so thankful to the Gemma Foundation for their generosity in helping us fulfill our mission of providing compassionate, state-of-the-art breast imaging and diagnosis,” said Martha B. Mainiero, M.D., director of the Anne C. Pappas Center for Breast Imaging at Rhode Island Hospital. “With a dedicated team that specializes in early detection and diagnosis of breast cancer, the donation of “Janes,” which were specifically designed with the mammography procedure in mind, will help us make each and every patient experience the best it can be.”


A mammogram—particularly a patient’s first—can cause anxiety both before and during the procedure, so the new “Janes” gowns were designed to help women feel at ease. Their special lightweight knit fabric and wrap closure provide maximum coverage with an emphasis on comfort.


“We understand how nerve-racking the mammogram process can be, so we wanted to help women feel comfortable with an alternative to the more traditional hospital gown,” said Maria Gemma, executive director of the Gloria Gemma Breast Cancer Resource Foundation. “Since we work yearlong to promote early detection, this gift is a salute to those being proactive with their health through routine screenings. It’s also a reminder that we are there for them, their family members and friends if they ever need us.”


Since its inception 10 years ago, the Gloria Gemma Breast Cancer Resource Foundation has worked diligently to collaborate with hospitals, oncologists and other partners to offer free breast health awareness, education and support programs in the local community. At the heart of their work is the promotion of early detection and routine screenings to save lives.


A Gift of Comfort: L-R. Breast cancer survivors Jane Iannetta, Leah Hooks, Amy Silva and Kelly Gilheeney model the new “Janes” gowns
donated to the Anne C. Pappas Center for Breast Imaging at Rhode Island Hospital by the Gloria Gemma Breast Cancer Resource Foundation
on May 8. The special lightweight gowns provide maximum coverage with an emphasis on comfort to help women feel at ease during
mammograms and other breast procedures.


Feeling More at Ease: Karlene Fiore (left), a mammography technician at the Anne C. Pappas Center for Breast Imaging at Rhode Island Hospital,
speaks with breast cancer survivor Amy Silva, who is wearing one of the “Janes” gowns donated to the Center by the Gloria Gemma
Breast Cancer Resource Foundation on May 8. The special gowns were designed with an emphasis on comfort to help women feel at ease
during mammograms and other breast procedures. 




Medicine Bottles Deliver Hope at the Comprehensive Cancer Center
Monday, April 07, 2014

What started as one cancer patient’s art project to repurpose medicine bottles used in chemotherapy, and perhaps distract her from her own treatment, has evolved into a powerful way to bring hope to cancer patients across the country. While undergoing chemotherapy treatment in 1999, Rhode Island artist and cancer survivor Diane Gregoire discovered a way to turn medicine bottles into art by decorating them with colorful polymer clay and filling them with a wish or message of hope. Polymer clay is a colorful and versatile manmade clay that can be sculpted, textured, stamped and combined to produce unique designs in pieces of art.


The clever and captivating bottles took on a life of their own, creating the Bottles of Hope project. Today, Diane conducts weekly workshops in the Comprehensive Cancer Center at Rhode Island Hospital, guiding participants in creating their own Bottles of Hope. Philanthropic contributions make this program possible here in Rhode Island. It has also become a popular program at hospitals and treatment centers nationally. On Tuesday mornings, Diane pushes her cart filled with art supplies and completed creations around the treatment areas, engaging with patients.


“It takes you to a different place and provides wonderful release,” Diane says. “They come into a scary situation and the next thing they know, they are playing with clay and laughing. There’s also a lot of talking and people ask questions they might have been afraid to ask otherwise. They leave feeling more comfortable, and some even fall in love with the art itself.”


Finished bottles take the form of robots, dinosaurs, even a chimney with a bird’s nest on top. Each patient-artist may keep the newly created artwork or place a message of hope inside and give it away. The recipient will know someone is having good thoughts for their health and wishes them well. Whether the patient keeps the bottle or gives it away, the medicine bottles have been reborn as small but powerful doses of hope—quite a gift from a little bottle that would be simply tossed if it weren’t for Diane and her vision.

The Bottles of Hope program is part of Lifespan’s Healing Arts Programs—an integral part of patient care that fosters creative expression for adults and children coping with illness or injury. There are currently 12 programs that bring the therapeutic arts to both pediatric and adult patients across the Lifespan affiliate hospitals. For more information about supporting the Healing Arts at Lifespan, please contact Paula Most, coordinator for the arts at Lifespan, at 401-444-3153 or, or visit

Rhode Island Hospital Foundation Board of Trustees Announces Roger Begin as New Chair
Monday, January 13, 2014

Mr. Begin assumes leadership role following longtime supporter Mrs. Ellen Collis


The Rhode Island Hospital Foundation Board of Trustees is pleased to announce that Roger Begin (right) has been named its new chairman. Mr. Begin assumes leadership of the board from longtime supporter Ellen Collis (below), who recently completed her term as chair.


Established as a resource for Rhode Island Hospital leadership to help define the hospital’s strategic vision, address opportunities and challenges, advocate on its behalf in the community, and support fundraising efforts, the foundation board represents the hospital’s commitment to collaborate with community leaders.


“We are extremely grateful to Ellen Collis for her service as chair and for her unwavering dedication to our hospital and the lives we touch each and every day,” said Dr. Timothy J. Babineau, president, Rhode Island Hospital, and chief executive officer, Lifespan. “As the state’s leading medical facility and an acclaimed academic medical center, the foundation board plays a critical role in helping us remain on the cutting edge of medicine, research and education. We look forward to Roger’s leadership in the coming years.”


A lifelong Rhode Islander, Begin has dedicated much of his career to the community, serving as the state’s General Treasurer and Lieutenant Governor in the 1980s and early 1990s before taking executive leadership positions at Fleet Bank, N.A., and Bank of America. Before being named chair, Roger was a member of the Rhode Island Hospital Foundation Board of Trustees. He is also a member of the Hasbro Children’s Hospital advisory council. Roger is now senior director for business development with BNY Mellon Wealth Management.


“To become chairman of the foundation board is both an honor and an opportunity,” said Begin. “As an ambassador of the hospital, I want to be a voice that helps people better understand how fortunate we are to have such an incredible resource as Rhode Island Hospital in our community…it’s an institution that all Rhode Islanders should be proud of.”


Ellen Collis has tirelessly given of her time and treasure as a volunteer for more than three decades. Deeply committed to supporting Rhode Island Hospital, Mrs. Collis’s term as chair was highlighted by leading the board during a time of transition that included merging all of the Lifespan hospital boards into one governing body. In 2008, Mrs. Collis’s countless contributions to Rhode Island Hospital were recognized when she was honored with the Edward A. Iannuccilli, MD, Civic Leader of the Year Award. 


Rhode Island Hospital Receives $850,000 Grant from The Champlin Foundations
Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Hospital will use funds to expand technology for interventional radiology and imaging

The Champlin Foundations have awarded Rhode Island Hospital a grant of $850,000 to support the purchase of state-of-the-art vascular interventional radiology equipment to be installed in the hospital’s Diagnostic Imaging Suite. The new imaging system will increase the hospital’s capacity to provide the full spectrum of vascular and interventional imaging applications, including many neuroradiology procedures that are vital to the work of The Norman Prince Neurosciences Institute at Rhode Island Hospital.


“We are immensely grateful to The Champlin Foundations for their continuing partnership with Rhode Island Hospital in improving the health and well-being of the people of southeastern New England,” said Timothy J. Babineau, M.D., president, Rhode Island Hospital, and president and chief executive officer, Lifespan. “The new interventional imaging system will increase Rhode Island Hospital’s capacity to provide state-of-the-art, timely and effective diagnosis and treatment for those who rely on us for highly specialized procedures.”


Interventional radiology procedures use minimally invasive techniques combined with high-end diagnostic imaging technology to identify and treat a broad range of conditions and disorders including acute stroke, cerebral aneurysms, neurological-related trauma and emergencies, vascular malformations, and tumors of the head, brain, neck and spine. Conditions that would have in the past required invasive surgery can now be considered for minimally invasive treatment. As an alternative to invasive surgery, interventional methods can save lives, lower the risk of patient complications, shorten hospital stays and promote faster patient recovery.


“We are proud of our partnership with Rhode Island Hospital and honored to help provide the clinical staff with advanced imaging technology to diagnose and treat serious illnesses and to save the lives of people from across the state and region,” said Keith Lang, executive director of The Champlin Foundations.


LIFEcycle “Ride ’Round Rhody” Bike-A-Thon Raises $50,000 for Lifespan’s Comprehensive Cancer Centers
Wednesday, November 27, 2013

On November 21, volunteers and cyclists of LIFEcycle, Inc., a Rhode Island nonprofit, gathered at The Miriam Hospital with Lifespan staff for a reception celebrating the highly successful “Ride ’Round Rhody” Bike-a-Thon. The 5th annual event, held on August 11, raised $50,000 for cancer care and research at Lifespan’s Comprehensive Cancer Centers at Rhode Island Hospital and its pediatric division, Hasbro Children’s Hospital, The Miriam Hospital, and Newport Hospital. In total, this event generated more than $76,000 for local cancer care and research.


“We are so pleased with the success of this year’s ‘Ride ’Round Rhody’ event. It was an incredibly executed ride thanks to the nearly 100 volunteers who came together to make it possible,” says Jacob Brier, co-founder of LIFEcycle, Inc. “Cancer, sadly, impacts the lives of countless friends, families and neighbors, which is why our cyclists take great pride in raising funds that support local treatment and research. We’re ecstatic that this year’s event brings the grand total raised to nearly $240,000 since 2009!”


L-R. Dani, Jacob and Soren Brier with Fred J. Schiffman, MD


L-R. Susan Sikov, Shelley Sigal and William Sikov, MD



Rhode Island Hospital Guild Plays Major Role in Rhode Island Hospital’s Past, Present and Future
Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Since 1955, the Rhode Island Hospital Guild has played a major role in supporting Rhode Island Hospital and Hasbro Children’s Hospital and their employees. Members of the guild help the hospitals maintain their quality of care in many ways, including raising funds for equipment and patient services and providing continuing education materials for employees. This group of women volunteers has raised millions of dollars to support many areas within the hospital and has become one of its most generous donors.


In 2012, the Guild fulfilled their $1 million pledge to support construction of the Comprehensive Cancer Center’s main entrance and specialty shop, renovations to the hospital’s Chapel of Hope, and completion of a critical care cardiac room in the emergency department. In 2013, the Guild donated $150,000—with $100,000 supporting The Norman Prince Neurosciences Institute at Rhode Island Hospital and $50,000 supporting two historic events: an anniversary-themed WaterFire employee torch lighting in September and the upcoming 150th Anniversary Celebration of Caring on November 16.


“The Guild has been central to making our 150th Anniversary year such a huge success. We are grateful for their leadership, commitment and generosity,” says Timothy J. Babineau, MD, president, Rhode Island Hospital, and president and CEO, Lifespan.



Team Tarro Offers Hope to Women through Early Breast Cancer Detection
Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Rhode Island Hospital proudly supports the work of Team Tarro, Inc., which raised $25,000 for the Anne C. Pappas Center for Breast Imaging at Rhode Island Hospital from the fifth annual Team Tarro Walk Through the Park on May 5 at Slater Park in Pawtucket.


Team Tarro was founded in 2000 by Mary Tarro, a remarkable woman of strength and courage. Mary was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1994 and lived with recurrences of the disease until she passed away in 2009. She incorporated Team Tarro, Inc. as a 501(c)(3) charitable organization focused on raising money for breast cancer early detection and research. “Mary’s goal was to create a 100 percent volunteer team, thus ensuring that every dollar possible would go directly to the causes supported,” said Dr. Robert D. Tarro, president of Team Tarro.

Since 2008, Team Tarro, Inc has donated $118,000 to The Pappas Center, and Dr. Martha Mainiero, the center’s director, has used the contributions to purchase the latest diagnostic equipment, including three-dimensional mammography, to remain on the cutting edge of early detection of breast cancer. On June 10, 2009, Team Tarro, Inc. was awarded the Rhode Island Hospital President’s Pursuit of Excellence Award in recognition of its continued success in raising funds.

Please send your donations to Team Tarro, Inc., P.O. Box 16444, Rumford, RI 02916, or make a contribution at Thank you.



Team Tarro 2013 before the start of the walk at Slater Park in Pawtucket. Photo by Jonathan Flynn.



L-R. Robert D. Tarro, MD; Martha Mainiero, MD; Jackie Rogers; and Nancy Horsman.





Dental Center Honors its Past While Investing in its Future
Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Something marvelous is taking place at The Samuels Sinclair Dental Center at Rhode Island Hospital. Indeed, magic has been taking place here for the past 82 years. This innovative program is actually the oldest and largest dental practice in the state that provides dental care for children and individuals of all ages with special needs from our community. For the lower income populations it serves, it is often the only place to turn for comprehensive affordable dental care. And it's unique in that it's on a hospital campus. For many this means a seamless medical and dental home with shared expertise from our medical colleagues on campus.


Driving the program toward the future is an integral goal to innovate and improve. And that, of course, takes funding.


"Thanks to our donors, we're ahead of the curve in terms of technology," says Dr. Shirley Spater Freedman, the Center's director for the past 18 years. "We were early adopters of electronic dental records in 2003, in 2011 we added new laptop computers in each of our operatories, and introduced digital X-rays in 2012. The new technology is more efficient, and our patients receive less radiation and better quality images. Also, by having the most advanced technology and equipment, we can attract skilled staff and residents to our program by staying current and competitive.  Our residents come from around the country and have chosen this program to expand their knowledge and enhance their clinical competencies while serving those with intellectual and physical disabilities.  Our goal is to increase their awareness, willingness and comfort level to care for this population and set the example for others to follow.  We also have a steady stream of interested students exploring careers in dentistry who volunteer their time as we open their eyes to the importance of oral health for medically compromised individuals."


Recently the Center recognized and thanked its two biggest benefactors: Delta Dental of Rhode Island and the Joseph & Rosalyn Sinclair Foundation. The Foundation's recent gift of $100,000 continues the Sinclair family's multi-decade legacy of philanthropy and will go a long way toward ensuring the hospital's dental center has the capacity and expertise to treat the patients who need its highly specialized care.


"I am so proud of our fine, selfless and compassionate staff who have been with Samuels, for decades in some cases, because they know they're part of something bigger than themselves," says Dr. Spater Freedman. "That's a testament to the unwavering support of our amazing donors who continually affirm how essential we are to the people of Rhode Island. We are so grateful. "


Rhode Island Hospital and Potter League for Animals Hosted Neurosciences Panel Discussion on Abuse, Aggression and the Brain
Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Newport, R.I. – On Wednesday, August 14, The Norman Prince Neurosciences Institute (NPNI) at Rhode Island Hospital and the Potter League for Animals co-hosted a panel discussion and luncheon at Ochre Court, Salve Regina University in Newport. The event was titled “Barking up the Neuroscience Tree: Abuse, Aggression and the Brain” and was moderated by Joe O’Connor, general manager of Rhode Island Public Radio. More than 60 people attended from the NPNI, Potter League and Rhode Island Public Radio communities.


The panelists included Gregory K. Fritz, M.D., professor and director, Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University; Linda Carpenter, M.D., professor of psychiatry and human behavior, Alpert Medical School; and M. Christie Smith, CAWA, executive director, Potter League for Animals. The co-sponsors of the event were Elizabeth Prince and Salve Regina University. The program began with an overview of the NPNI and Rhode Island’s emerging prominence as a thought leader and practitioner in the area of brain science, delivered by John Robson, Ph.D, administrative director of the NPNI.

“This unique program paired experts from a neuroscience institute and an animal welfare organization, and explored the deep connections created between humans and dogs,” said Dr. Robson, “Pet therapy programs within our hospitals are having a dramatic impact on patients, and we are grateful to organizations such as the Potter League for Animals for their deep commitment to the rights and well-being of this vulnerable population.” Ms. Smith provided compelling examples from her experience of how dogs truly are capable of sensing danger and also have an ability to help people break through self-made behavioral barriers. Drs. Carpenter and Fritz shared that accumulated “clinical wisdom” has convinced most practitioners that dogs can be of great benefit in clinical settings, especially in the mental health field where they have a very calming effect.


Drs. Carpenter and Fritz described how advances in neuroscience are revealing ways that subtle changes in chemistry in particular parts of the human brain can have profound effects on behavior and described how functional brain imaging and noninvasive brain stimulation are providing exciting opportunities to better understand abnormal behavior and potentially lead to further innovative treatments. The panelists discussed the need for further research, the ever present challenge of securing funding sources, and the great optimism that exists for major breakthroughs in the area of brain science through NPNI.  




Fifth Annual LIFEcycle “Ride ’Round Rhody” Raises More Than $76,000
Monday, August 19, 2013

More Than Doubling 2012 Results


Nearly 120 cyclists turned out in support of LIFEcycle’s annual “Ride ’Round Rhody” Bike-a-Thon on Sunday, August 11, to raise funds for Lifespan’s Comprehensive Cancer Center at Rhode Island Hospital, Hasbro Children’s Hospital, The Miriam Hospital and Newport Hospital. In total, this signature event generated more than $76,000 for local cancer care and research—more than doubling the impressive amount raised in 2012.

Beginning and finishing at Bryant University in Smithfield on a picture-perfect summer morning, riders took to the streets to complete their choice of a 25-, 50-, or 75-mile route—each offering a mix of gently rolling roads, challenging climbs and beautiful scenery. The event also featured a Health & Wellness Fair with nine exhibitors. More than 85 volunteers, many representing the Lifespan family, donated their time and talents to ensure the event’s success.

The funds raised were the result of 2,000 generous donors. Since 2009, LIFEcycle, Inc. has been an invaluable partner of our work, raising more than $225,000 through this inspirational signature event.

Generous Endowment Allows Rhode Island Hospital to Establish Annual Brain and Spine Cancer Lecture Series
Thursday, August 08, 2013

National and international experts coming to Rhode Island to share advances in treatment

On Wednesday, September 11, Rhode Island Hospital will host Dr. Peter Burger, a world-renowned neuropathologist at John Hopkins, as the inaugural speaker of the Scott E. Wang, MD Lecture in Neuro-Oncology.

Dr. Suriya Jeyapalan and Dr. Scott WangEstablished thanks to a generous $125,000 endowment by Dr. Scott E. Wang, who served as chief of pathology at Newport Hospital from 1991 to 2010, the yearly lecture series will bring leading experts from around the world to Providence to present the best clinical practices and most advanced research on brain and spine cancers. In 2010, Dr. Wang was diagnosed with glioblastoma, the most common and aggressive malignant brain tumor.

While brain cancers account for only 2 to 3 percent of all cancer diagnoses in the United States, Rhode Island has the second-highest incidence of brain cancers in the country.

“This lecture series will bring national and international brain cancer researchers to Rhode Island so that they may share what they’ve learned about these tumors and advances in their treatment—something we wouldn’t have been able to afford without Dr. Wang’s selfless gift,” says Dr. Suriya Jeyapalan, director of neuro-oncology for Rhode Island Hospital. “There is incredible research being done here in Rhode Island, and this opportunity to expand our knowledge base will enhance patient outcomes.”

During his visit, Dr. Burger, an internationally renowned neuropathologist who specializes in diagnosing brain and spinal cord tumors in adults and children, will deliver a presentation titled “150 years of Glioblastoma Multiforme.” Burger, who writes the classification of brain tumors for the World Health Organization, will also address the pathology of these tumors, recent biomarkers, and advances in the field to help guide patient prognosis and best treatments.

The lecture is open to all who are interested, and the audience includes physicians, residents, fellows and medical students at Rhode Island Hospital’s Norman Prince Neurosciences Institute and the hospital’s Comprehensive Cancer Center, Brown University, and representatives from other regional hospitals. For more information about the lecture, please visit the Norman Prince Neurosciences Institute website at

“Medical science changes so rapidly, I knew it was important to keep the team in Rhode Island educated on the latest and best forms of diagnosis and treatment,” said Dr. Wang. “I care deeply that physicians have access to the latest information on these tumors so they may continue to deliver the highest level of care."

(Photo: Dr. Suriya Jeyapalan and Dr. Scott Wang)

Rhode Island Hospital’s Comprehensive Cancer Center Celebrates Dedication of Renovated Family Room
Monday, May 13, 2013

Michael H. Flanagan Foundation’s Gift Will Help Comfort Cancer Patients and their Families 

On Tuesday, May 7, the Comprehensive Cancer Center at Rhode Island Hospital celebrated the dedication of a completely renovated family room in its Comprehensive Cancer Center thanks to the generosity of the Michael H. Flanagan Foundation. The renovated family room will provide a calm, comfortable environment for patients and families and also space for families to meet with caregivers.


In 1998, as a 19-year-old sophomore at Providence College, Michael H. Flanagan was diagnosed with leukemia and endured multiple bone marrow transplants and months in isolation as his new immune system developed. Sadly, Michael succumbed to his illness in 2001. His family honored his memory by establishing the Michael H. Flanagan Foundation to help provide comfort and support to other patients and their families.


“I remember having much of our family crowded into Michael’s hospital room so that we could be together despite the close quarters and beeping machines,” said Christine Griffin, Michael’s sister and the foundation’s director. “Our goal with this family room was to create a space that felt like home for patients and their families to go when not in a hospital room dealing with the daily battles that leukemia or any cancer presents. We deeply understand the comfort that a peaceful room like this can provide.”


The Michael H. Flanagan Family Room features new furniture, artwork, and amenities. Along with financial grants, the Foundation has also supported Rhode Island Hospital patients by providing “comfort bags” filled with thoughtful necessities, games and personal items. They also provide patients at Rhode Island Hospital and Hasbro Children’s Hospital with teddy bears, resource and activity books, and DVD players and DVDs.


Susan Garland, LICSW, a social worker at Rhode Island Hospital’s Comprehensive Cancer Center, said, “The Flanagan Foundation has supported leukemia patients at Rhode Island Hospital for the past 10 years, and no request is insurmountable for their generosity. From renovating this beautiful room to providing holiday gifts to children and funding a patient’s travel to California to participate in a clinical study, they truly understand the needs of patients suffering from this horrible disease.”


Guests from the Michael H. Flanagan Foundation and Rhode Island Hospital gather for the family room dedication ceremony on May 7.


Samuels Sinclair Dental Center at Rhode Island Hospital helps to “Give Kids a Smile”
Sunday, February 10, 2013

On Friday, February 8, the Samuels Sinclair Dental Center celebrated the 11th annual “Give Kids a Smile Day” (GKAS) with underserved and underinsured children throughout Rhode Island receiving dental care in clinics and private dental offices statewide. Despite the arrival of Winter Storm Nemo and the cancellation of the event’s afternoon session, Samuels Sinclair Dental was still able to see more than 30 children for dental appointments and bring smiles to many faces.

As the centerpiece to National Children’s Dental Health Month, and sponsored by the Rhode Island Dental Association and the American Dental Association, GKAS was designed to provide dental care to low-income children who would not otherwise have access to care, while also raising awareness of the importance of dental coverage for children’s health.

“Nationwide, tooth decay affects more than 25 percent of children between two and five years old and 50 percent of children between 12 and 15 years old, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,” said Shirley Spater Freedman, D.M.D., director of the Samuels Sinclair Dental Center at Rhode Island Hospital. “Yet, in Rhode Island, only one percent of the Medicaid budget is allocated for dental services. For many children at our annual Give Kids a Smile event, this will be their first visit to the dentist.”

Children received dental screenings, oral examinations, radiographs, cleanings, fillings and educational materials at the Samuels Sinclair Dental Center at Rhode Island Hospital. The event included visits from Paws, the PawSox mascot, Mr. Potato Head, a group of superheroes, and many hospital representatives and other volunteers as children waited to see their dentist and dental hygienist. Dental supplies for the day were donated by national sponsor Henry Schein and Patterson Dental.

Amos House provided breakfast for the event, while Texas Roadhouse supplied lunch. Refreshments such as cake, beverages and paper supplies were provided by East Side Marketplace, Stop & Shop and Shaw’s Supermarkets. Members of Team Hasbro, Hasbro, Inc’s employee volunteer program, helped to brighten the time children spent waiting by bringing toys and games to play with, as well as one for each child to take home. The Hasbro Children’s Hospital Family Resource Center also provided books for patients to read and take home with them.

The Samuels Sinclair Dental Center has been providing dental services to underprivileged children and individuals with special needs for over 80 years. It is the site that launched the first “Give Kids a Smile” program in Rhode Island, and annually organizes statewide events.

President’s Pursuit of Excellence Dinner Raises More Than $290,000
Friday, December 21, 2012

On November 14, more than 550 people gathered at the Rhode Island Convention Center for the fourth annual President’s Pursuit of Excellence Dinner for Rhode Island Hospital. Hosted by Timothy J. Babineau, MD, president and chief executive officer of Lifespan and president of Rhode Island Hospital, the event kicked off the hospital’s yearlong 150th anniversary celebration. Generous supporters helped raise more than $290,000 to benefit clinical care, research and education at the hospital. The Rhode Island Hospital Guild was the signature sponsor.

The event honored three champions of the hospital: individual champions David A. and Heidi Kirk Duffy; community champion The Champlin Foundations; and the partner in service champion, the Rhode Island National Guard. “Their extraordinary passion and commitment to Rhode Island Hospital truly deserve recognition. They are shining examples of what is possible when hard work and motivation come together for a great cause,” says Cathy Duquette, PhD, RN, executive vice president, nursing affairs, Lifespan and senior vice president and chief quality officer, Rhode Island Hospital, who co-chaired the event with James and David Winoker.

The guest speaker was Meredith Clynes, a 26-year-old with epilepsy who traveled from New York to be treated by G. Rees Cosgrove, MD, FRCSC, chief of neurosurgery at Rhode Island and The Miriam hospitals and co-clinical director of the Norman Prince Neurosciences Institute. In March 2012, Clynes became the first in the state to have NeuroPort microelectrodes implanted in her brain, allowing researchers to analyze patterns of brain activity to predict the start and spread of seizures.

“I am extremely hopeful that my seizures will remain controlled. That way, I can finally begin my life,” says Clynes. “This surgery and the whole amazing experience at Rhode Island Hospital have allowed me to just begin. I am so thankful.”

Rhode Island Hospital’s Sim Center Receives $24,000 Grant
Wednesday, December 19, 2012

The Rhode Island-based Edward J. and Virginia M. Routhier Foundation awarded $24,000 to help upgrade a unique training resource at Rhode Island Hospital, the Medical Simulation Center. The Sim Center provides training in a wide range of complex medical situations. The center’s audiovisual system records staged events, which are then reviewed with participating medical staff and instructors. High-quality AV equipment is crucial to this experiential style of learning. The $24,000 grant from the Routhier Foundation will help the Sim Center upgrade that equipment to high-definition digital format.


LIFEcycle Raises $32,500 for Lifespan Cancer Programs
Wednesday, November 28, 2012

On November 12, LIFEcycle, Inc., presented a check totaling $32,500 for Lifespan cancer programs and a new clinical trial that will benefit cancer patients and their families at Rhode Island Hospital, The Miriam Hospital, Hasbro Children’s Hospital and Newport Hospital. LIFEcycle, to date, has donated more than $92,000 to Lifespan affiliates for cancer programs and research, raised by participants in the foundation’s annual Ride ’Round Rhody bike-athon. Sharon Benson and Joseph Centazzo and their team of 44 cyclists took part in the 2012 bike-athon and raised $14,000.


 L-R. Dani Sahner Brier and Jacob Brier, co-founders of LIFEcycle, Inc.; Howard Safran, MD, medical director of Lifespan Oncology Cancer Research and bike-athon participant; and Sharon Benson and Joseph Centazzo, co-captains of the Lifespan Care Team Cruisers and employees of Rhode Island Hospital’s Comprehensive Cancer Center. Photo by Al Weems.