Upstate News

April 14, 2008
Doretta Royer 315 464-4833

Former U.S. Surgeon General David Satcher, benefactor Jules Setnor to earn honorary degrees

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Former U.S. Surgeon General David Satcher, M.D., Ph.D., and longtime SUNY Upstate Medical University benefactor and Jules R. Setnor, M.D. will address graduates and receive honorary during the 2008 SUNY Upstate Medical University Commencement Sunday, May 18, at 1 p.m., in the John H. Mulroy Civic Center Crouse Hinds Theater in Syracuse. Satcher and Setnor will each receive a Doctor of Science Degree.

“Dr. Satcher is known throughout our country and abroad as an eminent physician, scholar, researcher, educator and administrator,” said SUNY Upstate President David R. Smith, M.D.


“Dr. Setnor is a distinguished 1935 alumnus of the Syracuse University Medical College, which became SUNY Upstate Medical University, a successful physician who dedicated his life to his patients and family, and, who with wife, Rose, and brother Stanford S. Setnor, M.D., developed a deep interest in education, believing that every aspiring student should have an opportunity to achieve his or her ambition.

“For these reasons, we are proud to bestow honorary degrees to Dr. Satcher and Dr. Setnor,” Smith said.

Satcher, currently director of the Center of Excellence on Health Disparities in the National Center for Primary Care at the Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta, was the nation’s 16 th surgeon general, serving from 1998 to 2002 under both Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush.

Prior to his appointment as Surgeon General, he served as director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and administrator of the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. He is a former Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar and a Macy Faculty Fellow. He has been recognized for his major contributions to medicine and public health with numerous awards.

Satcher was selected as an honorary degree recipient, in part, because of his continuing interest in health disparities in the United States. SUNY Upstate is actively working to become a leader in New York and the nation in the areas of public health, preventive medicine and meeting the healthcare needs of disadvantaged and underserved populations.

Currently, SUNY Upstate is establishing a new degree program in Public Health (MPH) and Preventive Medicine, starting new health professions and nursing programs in several rural Central New York communities and is partnering with the Syracuse community Health Center to improve healthcare delivery in the local inner city area.

In 2005, Jules, Rose and Stanford Setnor gave a $3 million naming gift to SUNY Upstate to build the Rose, Jules R. and Stanford S. Setnor Academic Building. Officially opened in August 2007, the building provides state of the art educational facilities for medical, graduate, health professions and nursing students.

Setnor was selected as an honorary degree recipient for his dedication as a practicing physician for future graduates of SUNY Upstate and his stature as a role model for the educational programs at SUNY Upstate.

“Highlighting his philanthropic contributions to his alma mater will further serve to keep others aware of the critical importance of their financial support to ensure future generations of physicians will be well trained to carry on this tradition of exemplary patient care,” Smith said.

“The story of the closeness of the Setnor family, Jules, Rose and their brother Stanford also serves as a subtle reminder of the importance of family and a balanced life to a physician, and thus his or her ability to care for patients.”

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