2022 Alumni Awards
Congratulations to the 2022 Alumni Award recipients. We are proud to recognize their professional achievements and contributions to medicine, and honor them as representatives of the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University.
One of our most fundamental tenets is the strength and spirit of our alumni community, which has proven true now more than ever before. Together, we all share in the pursuit of excellence—in our work and in supporting one another. We recognize this year’s Alumni Award recipients for exemplifying that pursuit and celebrate their commitment to the values that define a Temple Made physician: exceptional care for their patients, generosity of spirit and a passion for serving others.
The Henry P. and M. Page Laughlin Alumna of the Year Award
Recognizing outstanding contributions to medicine
Frank A. Rumore, MD ’67
In addition to building highly successful group and private practices in the San Francisco Bay Area, Dr. Frank Rumore held leadership roles at several psychiatric hospitals, taught residents and medical students from Stanford University Medical School, and consulted to international technology firms in Silicon Valley. His distinguished 45-year career has included military service, hospital administration, academic involvement, and forensic examination.
After graduating from Temple with his medical degree in 1967, he completed his internship at Harkness Hospital in San Francisco and his psychiatric residency at Columbia University’s St. Luke’s Hospital in New York. Dr. Rumore was activated to military service and served as a Lt. Commander in the United States Navy during the Vietnam War as the Chief of Professional Services for a division of 20,000 marines stationed in Okinawa, Japan.
Following completion of his military service he attended the University of Oregon for fellowship training in child psychiatry. Dr. Rumore subsequently returned to the San Francisco Bay Area and embarked on a career that included a long-term partnership in the Valley Psychiatric Medical Group and later a solo practice in adult and child psychiatry that flourished for more than four decades.
Throughout, Dr. Rumore served in leadership capacities for several community and private hospitals. He led a department of more than 50 psychiatrists as Chair of the Department of Psychiatry at Good Samaritan Hospital and served as Medical Director for several institutions, including Oak Creek Hospital, Community Psychiatric Center’s Belmont Hills Hospital, and the Eastfield Ming Quong Children’s Center, a residential treatment center for emotionally disturbed children and adolescents.
For fifteen years, he served as Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry for Stanford University Medical School, and was an examiner for the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. He was a forensic examiner for the Superior Court of Santa Clara County and held consulting roles with United Healthcare and with Silicon Valley tech firms including a long relationship with Apple.
Dr. Rumore is a Diplomate of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology in both adult and child psychiatry. He is also a Diplomate of the American Board of Medical Examiners and has received numerous recognitions for his dedication and service.
Dr. Rumore is a trustee of Washington & Jefferson College, his undergraduate alma mater, and serves on the Board of Visitors of Lewis Katz School of Medicine.
The Alumni Achievement Award
Recognizing alumni whose contributions to medicine have had a lasting impact
Jay T. Backstorm, MD '82, MPH
Dr. Jay T. Backstrom has dedicated his career to bringing practice-changing, life-changing treatments and therapies to the global marketplace.
His work – advancing novel and innovative therapies through critical stages of clinical development and regulatory review – has led to worldwide approval and use of new treatments across a broad range of therapeutic areas, including multiple myeloma, myelodysplastic syndromes, acute myeloid leukemia, myelofibrosis, beta thalassemia, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, non-small cell lung cancer, metastatic pancreatic cancer, psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis, multiple sclerosis, and cardiovascular disease.
After graduating from Temple University’s medical school in 1982, he completed his internal medicine residency at Temple University Hospital (ultimately serving as chief resident). In 1990, to fulfill the requirements of his National Health Service Corps scholarship, he served as Medical Director of the Samuel U. Rodgers Community Health Center in Kansas City, Mo. While there, he earned a master’s degree in Public Health at Saint Louis University.
In 1990, he began his career in research and development in the biotech industry at Marion Merrell Dow. His positions there -- in clinical research, global drug surveillance, and pharmacoepidemiology -- continued over the next 18 years as part of successor companies, including Hoechst Marion Roussel. He then accepted a leadership role with Pharmion Corporation as Vice President of Global Medical Affairs and Safety. Then, in 2008, he joined Celgene Corporation as Vice President of Clinical Research and Development -- and was ultimately named Chief Medical Officer and Head of Regulatory Affairs.
He served most recently as Executive Vice President and Head of Research and Development at Acceleron Pharma Inc., a role that continued until the company was acquired by Merck & Company in 2021.
Today, he provides guidance and counsel to emerging biotech firms, with service on the Boards of Autolus Therapeutics, Be Biopharma, and Disc Medicine.
Dr. Backstrom’s exceptional skill and broad expertise have been recognized with multiple honors. He earned commendation by the U.S. Public Health Service for his contributions to the recruitment and retention of physicians and was presented with Celgene Corporation’s Joshua Lederberg Award for Excellence in Clinical Development. Dr. Backstrom is also an inductee of Temple University’s Gallery of Success.
The Alumni Achievement Award
Recognizing alumni whose contributions to medicine have had a lasting impact
Eileen Cohler Helzner, MD '72
During her distinguished 30-year career in industry, Dr. Eileen Cohler Helzner provided leadership to major companies – shepherding pharmaceuticals, medical devices, and consumer drugs in numerous therapeutic areas across multiple stages of development and approval.
For more than two decades, she held key roles at Johnson & Johnson. As Vice President for Worldwide Clinical Development and Outcomes Research for the Medical Device and Diagnostic Group, she was responsible for product evaluation and outcomes research for medical devices. As Vice President for Medical Affairs for this Group, she spearheaded programs in health economics analysis to demonstrate product effectiveness, safety, and value. On the pharmaceutical side, Dr. Helzner was instrumental in bringing loperamide, ibuprofen, and famotidine to the over-the-counter market.
Dr. Helzner then moved to Wyeth (now Pfizer) and served as Vice President for Global Medical Affairs for the Women’s Health division. In this role, she supported a pipeline of drugs for birth control, osteoporosis, and menopause. She also led Publications, External Communications, and Clinical Writing across all therapeutic groups.
Throughout her career, Dr. Helzner worked with the Food and Drug Administration and worldwide regulatory agencies to support approvals and reimbursements for drugs and medical devices. She served as an industry representative on the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Advisory Committee for Medical Devices.
After graduating from medical school at Temple in 1972, Dr. Helzner did her training in Family Medicine at Chestnut Hill Hospital, then earned a Master of Science Degree in Epidemiology from the Harvard University School of Public Health. She began her career in community health prior to transitioning to industry.
Widely respected for her expertise and insight, she served as a Senior Fellow at the Jefferson University College of Population Health and is a member of the Lewis Katz School of Medicine Board of Visitors as well as a member of the Alumni Board of the Temple University College of Science and Technology.
The Alumni Service Award
Honoring outstanding alumni with exemplary records of service and generosity to the school
Arthur Bobrove, BA ’63, MD ’67, FACP
Dr. Arthur Bobrove is a fellowship-trained rheumatologist whose career spans clinical practice, military service, research, teaching, consulting, and inventing. It also features giving. He is generous with his time, talent, and largesse.
In addition to supporting various human-service nonprofit organizations, Dr. Bobrove and his wife, Helen, are major benefactors of the Lewis Katz School of Medicine. They supported funds for various strategic priorities for the school over the years and included the school in their estate plans. Then, in 2020, they gave a major gift to the school, establishing the Bobrove Family Endowed Scholarship.
The Bobrove Family Endowed Scholarship is intended to benefit current and future generations of medical students at Temple – much in the way that scholarship funds made a difference for Dr. Bobrove during his student days, both as an undergraduate and during medical school. To show their gratitude for the assistance Dr. Bobrove received years ago – and the education he leveraged into a successful career -- he and his wife are paying it forward through philanthropy and through his service as an advisor as a member of the School’s Board of Visitors.
Dr. Bobrove is quite accomplished. He served many years as Adjunct Professor of Medicine at Stanford University's Medical School -- practicing, teaching, and directing research at Palo Alto's Veterans Administration Medical Center and the Palo Alto Medical Foundation.
He is also an inventor with a passion to improve quality of life for patients. Dr. Bobrove holds six patents for novel medical devices and therapeutics. Several are commercially licensed. And one is on the market: Qbrexza®, the first FDA-approved topical treatment for hyperhidrosis, a chronic condition estimated to affect more than 10 million people in the United States.
The Emerging Leader Award
Honoring exemplary leadership and promise in medicine
Mitzie-Ann Davis, MD ’07, MPH, FACOG
Dr. Mitzie-Ann Davis is a gynecologic oncologist at Piedmont Fayette Hospital in Fayetteville, Ga.
Since joining Piedmont Healthcare in 2016, she has been committed to providing comprehensive cancer care to women, especially those on the south side of metropolitan Atlanta.
A leading expert in minimally invasive surgeries, she has completed over 600 daVinci robotic cases to date. She has also established numerous clinical trials and serves on several executive committees for Piedmont Healthcare, including the Clinical Governance for Oncology Committee and the Physician Liaison for Cancer Committee.
The recipient of many accolades and recognitions, Dr. Davis is the recipient of Piedmont Health’s Montague Boyd award for research. She has been named “Top Doc” by Georgia Trend magazine and was featured on the cover of Fayette Woman magazine.
After graduating from Temple with her medical degree in 2007, Dr. Davis completed her residency in obstetrics and gynecology at Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia and then went on to receive her Master of Public Health degree from Johns Hopkins University. She completed her fellowship training in gynecologic oncology at the University of California at San Diego. She is a fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and a member of the Society of Gynecologic Oncologists.
As a former teacher, education remains a priority for Dr. Davis within the medical community and beyond. As such, she has been a public speaker on gynecologic malignancies for several organizations, including Black Health Matters and the National Medical Association. She gives an annual lecture series on gynecologic cancers for the general public at Piedmont Fayette Hospital.
Dr. Davis continues to be passionate about her field and when asked of her career to date, Dr. Davis responds unequivocally, “It is not just my job; this is my calling.”
The Honored Professor Award
For faculty who exemplify the knowledge and values that Temple strives to instill
Abhijit S. Pathak, MD '91, MSE, FACS, FCCM
Dr. Abhijit S. Pathak, Professor of Surgery at the Lewis Katz School of Medicine, has been a deeply respected educational and clinical leader at Temple for more than two decades. He teaches and models the deep funds of knowledge, excellent clinical skills, and all the attributes of professionalism for which “Temple-made” physicians are known.
He, too, is “Temple-made.” He is a graduate of the Lewis Katz School of Medicine Class of 1991 and completed his General Surgery Residency at Temple, also serving as a Research Fellow in the Division of Cardiac and Thoracic Surgery. He went to the University of Maryland for a Fellowship in Trauma/Surgical Critical Care – and accepted a post at Yale University School of Medicine – until 1999, when Temple asked him to come back home.
Dr. Pathak is Director of the Surgical Intensive Care Unit at Temple University Hospital and Program Director of Temple’s Surgical Critical Care Fellowship. He also chairs the Critical Care Committee and Organ Donation Council at Temple University Hospital, directs the Advanced Trauma Life Support Course, and serves in other roles. Teaching is central to all he does. Medical students appreciate the way he values them as important members of the patient care team. Residents and fellows laud his methodical, nuanced, decisive approach to clinical decision making.
Dr. Pathak is board certified in General Surgery with an added qualification in Surgical Critical Care by the American Board of Surgery– and a fellow of four societies: the American College of Critical Care Medicine, the American College of Surgeons, the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, and the Philadelphia Academy of Surgery. He contributes to professional affairs at the national level for the Society of Critical Care Medicine, the American Association for the Surgery of Trauma, the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, the Surgical Critical Care Program Directors Society and the American Board of Surgery, among others.
His work has been published in leading journals and he has also contributed to chapters in many surgical textbooks.