Generous Gift Establishes Melanoma Division in Department of Dermatology

With the extraordinary generosity of David M. Frankel, M.D., and his family, the Miller School’s Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery has established The Frankel Family Division of Melanocytic Tumors, bringing researchers and physicians one step closer to conquering a formidable foe.

As Miller School Dean Pascal J. Goldschmidt, M.D., noted at the February 13 naming ceremony for the division, which was launched with a $1 million gift made by Frankel, a UM dermatology resident in the class of 1980, and his family, melanoma kills one American every hour. Under the leadership of Lawrence A. Schachner, M.D., Chairman and Harvey Blank Professor of Dermatology, James Grichnik, M.D., Ph.D., professor of dermatology and one of the nation’s foremost melanoma experts, will serve as chief of the new division.

“The Frankel Division will allow the Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery to pursue advancements in pigmented lesion research, clinical care and education,” said the Dean, who is also Senior Vice President for Medical Affairs and CEO of the University of Miami Health System.

“As a longtime volunteer faculty member at the University of Miami and the VA Medical Center, Dr. Frankel gave selflessly of his time to instruct junior doctors, and he now adds to his service to others with this wonderful gift,” the Dean continued. “We thank Dr. and Mrs. Frankel and the Frankel family for being a very important part of the answer to curing melanoma in the future.”

Schachner noted that the Frankel Family gift, which is part of Momentum2: The Breakthrough Campaign for The University of Miami, complements the numerous efforts of dermatology faculty to focus on early detection of pigmented lesions, with such initiatives as free skin cancer screenings, epidemiological studies, the establishment of the Grichnik Laboratory for Melanoma and the ANNA fund, which integrates melanoma efforts at the Miller School and Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center.

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