GOLD balloons for a golden anniversary and gold sunflowers and blue hydrangeas, colors of the University of Toledo, decorated the room for the 50th anniversary celebration of the founding of the Medical College of Ohio at Toledo on May 31 at the Radisson Hotel at the University of Toledo Medical Center, on campus where it all began. Some 360 guests reminisced during the cocktail hour.
Present from the first graduating class of 1972 were Drs. Lurley Archambeau, Ralph Whalen, Mike Fadell, Clark Weidaw, John Croci, and Donna Woodson. Many folks, before the gala, toured the campus in golf carts driven by students. On hand to assist were the Satellites, the medical college’s auxiliary, run by president Lynn Brand. The dinner crowd included physicians, doctors of philosophy, politicians, and community leaders.
Doctors present included: Tom Schwann, Howard Madigan, Lance Talmage, Bill Davis, Amjad Hussain, and Amira Gohara. Among the community leaders seen were Dee and Zac Isaac, whose father George Isaac, Jr., was a board member; Fritz Wolfe, co-founder of Health Care REIT; attorney Keith Wilkowski and his wife Barb; board member Susan Palmer and husband Tom; Annabelle Isaacs, MCO’s first employee, and current board chairman Joseph H. Zerbey IV, president and general manager of The Blade. Event chairman William “Bill” McMillen welcomed everyone. Proclamations were presented from U.S. Reps. Marcy Kaptur and Bob Latta, who was not present, but his wife Marcia Sloan Latta was; state Sen. Randy Gardner, and Toledo Mayor D. Michael Collins, who referred to the late Paul Block, Jr.,
The Blade’s late co-publisher and MCO’s first board chairman, as a titan and visionary whose courage, wisdom, and vision should be followed to lead us into the future. University of Toledo President Dr. Lloyd A. Jacobs said the celebration was for a unique model of a hospital combined with a medical school created by a public official — the late Gov. James A. Rhodes. Even now, UT is one of two public universities in Ohio that have wholly owned hospitals, the other being Ohio State University. Honorary co-chairman Allan Block, chairman of Block Communications Inc., who just returned from London, said “I have a dream that in the next 50 years, the medical school will be in the top schools, maybe the top 75 schools, and the University of Toledo will be a top public urban university in America.”
Honorary co-chairman John Robinson Block, publisher and editor-in-chief of The Blade, commented that MCO started as a dream and a promise. “We are here tonight because Ohio’s governor of the century, James A. Rhodes kept a promise to my late father — Toledo will get a medical school.” “It’s just that simple. Promise given, promise kept, his fingers were not crossed, “ said Mr. Block.
The crowd previewed the documentary MCO: A History of Healing and Teaching produced in cooperation with WGTE Public Media, which will air at 8 tonight. Many noted area physicians are in the film, including Dr. Elizabeth Ruppert, whose late husband, Dr. Richard Ruppert, was MCO president from 1977-93. He was the mentor to the late Dr. Frank McCullough, who was president from 1996- 2003.
The expected net profit from the celebration, $60,000, will support students on the Health Science Campus. Sponsors included Pro- Medica, Block Communications Inc., Medical Mutual, and Dr. Peter White and his wife, Polly.
Contact Blade Society Writer Barbara Hendel at 419-724-6124 or at email@example.com