Faculty and Staff News
At their January meeting, the University's Board of Trustees voted unanimously to bestow the rank of professor emeritus upon Dr. Pierrette Dayhaw-Barker, founding director of the PhD in Biomedicine program, former associate dean of the Foundations of Optometric Medicine, and former interim director of the Physician Assistant program.
Salus president, Dr. Michael H. Mittelman expressed the University community's thanks to Dr. Dayhaw-Barker for her many contributions to the University. She in turn thanked Board members, Dr. Mittelman, and her colleagues, saying, "I was fortunate to spend my professional life in a profession for which I had a passion. I did not do this alone... this institution is fortunate to have not only wonderful clinical expertise but also some very capable and devoted basic science educators." She added that she had "served under four presidents and learned from each of them." Dr. Dayhaw-Barker, who retired on February 27, also thanked Dr. Anthony F. Di Stefano, vice president of Academic Affairs for his "mentorship, his trust and all the lengthy philosophical discussions we've had over the years," saying she would miss the discussions.
The first female PhD graduate of University of Houston College of Optometry, Dr. Dayhaw-Barker taught physiology, endocrinology some pathophysiology and some environmental optometry (the latter in the optometry program) during her distinguished career at PCO/Salus. She has also taight in the Summer Enrichment Program (SEP) since its inception. In addition to acting as a mentor to students in Graduate Programs in Biomedicine, she also taught various courses and coordinated courses in that program, such as Orientation to Research and some seminar courses.
Dr. Dayhaw-Barker's husband, Dr. Felix M. Barker, II, himself a professor emeritus who retired from Salus in 2010 after a long and distinguished career, was also present at the Board meeting.
Newly appointed vice president of Clinical Operations, John Gaal, had a busy first week. On Monday, February 3, his first day, the University and its clinics were closed due to a major snowstorm, which was followed by ice storm-related power outages from Wednesday to Sunday on the Elkins Park campus, which includes the Pennsylvania Ear Institute.
A US Army veteran with 28 years of service, then Colonel Gaal was chief operating officer at Walter Reed National Medical Center in Bethesda, MD prior to his retirement. In his new position at Salus, Mr. Gaal is responsible for the operation of The Eye Institute, the William Feinbloom Vision Rehabilitation Center, the Pennsylvania Ear Institute and any future University clinical services.
In his announcement to the University community, President Michael H. Mittelman said, “John Gaal’s exceptional skill in managing large hospital operations will be a great asset to Salus as we continue to thrive and grow,” noting that Mr. Gaal’s years of experience as chief operating officer in military hospitals, combined with his leadership ability, “make him a valuable part of the Salus team.”
Mr. Gaal’s healthcare administration experience stood him in good stead and, as he noted in his second week on the job, “My first week on the job was interesting, fun, and chaotic… exactly what I was looking for in my new job. I was impressed with the staff and faculty, and how well they did dealing with the changes and challenges created by the unusual weather. The staff were great, keeping the needs of the patients at the forefront.”
Associate professors Dr. Sarah Appel and Ms. Marcy Grayboyes, MSW, have received a grant of $20,000 provided through the generosity of the Albert B. Millett Memorial Fund of the BNY Mellon Mid-Atlantic Charitable Trusts to fund the Feinbloom Community Based Low Vision Mobile Clinic. With this grant, the Low Vision Mobile Clinic service will continue to bring comprehensive low vision evaluations to children with visual impairment in their educational settings at sites throughout the Delaware Valley.
Located within The Eye Institute, the William Feinbloom Vision Rehabilitation Center was established to continue the groundbreaking work of Dr. William Feinbloom (1904-1985), who used his knowledge of physics, math, biophysics and visual psychology to invent many specialized magnification devices that are still in use today in the rehabilitation of individuals with visual impairment.
The University community warmly welcomes its newest members:
- John Clark, Security
- John Gaal, VP Clinical Operations
- Gary Hughes, Security
The Salus community offers sincere congratulations to the following members:
- Dr. Michael Rebar of TEI and his wife, Tiffany, on the birth of first child, a daughter.
- The Salus University community offers sincere sympathy to the following members:
The family of Anthony Baniewicz III on February 24. Tony was originally hired as a maintenance technician, and he eventually became an Ophthalmic Repair Technician.
The Salus University community offers sincere sympathy to the following members:
- The family of Anthony Baniewicz III on February 24. Tony was originally hired as a maintenance technician, and he eventually became an Ophthalmic Repair Technician.
- Janet Wilbur, Professional Studies and International Programs, on the passing of her father, Herman Wilbur, on February 26.