Paolo G. Rusconi, M.D., Accepts Fourth Berenson Chair in Pediatric Cardiology
Surrounded by colleagues, long-time friends, and Miller School and UM leadership, Paolo G. Rusconi, M.D., accepted the Berenson Chair in Pediatric Cardiology, becoming the fourth holder of the esteemed chair, which was established in 1968 with contributions from L. Stanley “Buddy” Berenson in memory of his father, Richard.
“Though no longer with us, Buddy and Richard’s legacy of support for children’s cardiac health lives on,” said UM President Donna E. Shalala at the endowment ceremony held in the Mailman Center for Child Development on March 30. “I am so proud of physicians like Dr. Rusconi, who bring prestige and recognition to the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, and I am proud of endowments like the Berenson Chair, which really speak to the longevity of providing students and patients access to the best and brightest minds in medicine, year after year.”
“Pediatric cardiology at the University of Miami has a rich history,” said Steven E. Lipshultz, M.D., George Batchelor Professor and Chairman of the Department of Pediatrics, “and Dr. Rusconi follows a long line of impressive predecessors. From its beginnings as part of the National Children’s Cardiac Hospital, the Children’s Heart Program at UM/Jackson Memorial Medical Center dates all the way back to 1960. Dr. Rusconi has big shoes to fill, but I cannot think of a better colleague or more dedicated physician to do the job.”
After finishing first in his class at the University of Pavia, Italy, Rusconi completed his training in London and then in the United States, leading him to a fellowship in pediatric cardiology at UM/Jackson in 1996, where he has been ever since.
Acknowledging his former colleague as a “thought leader” and “team builder” in pediatric cardiology, Andrew N. Redington, M.D., professor of pediatrics at the University of Toronto and division head of cardiology at Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children, traveled from Canada to help celebrate his friend’s honor. “Parents and patients should be proud to have access to such a great system—and such a great physician—in the highly specialized field of pediatric cardiology,” Redington said.
Standing in front of a mural that reads, “Hope is Where the Heart is,” and with the sound of children at a nearby school laughing and playing in the background, the setting for the presentation of the Berenson Chair in Pediatric Cardiology could not have been more fitting. Thanking his predecessors, mentors, benefactors, and patients, Rusconi summed up the occasion saying: “This is a great honor for me, but the greatest honor comes from giving a child and a family new hope.”