From left, David A. Milling, MD; Gregory Cherr, MD; Marcia Sarkin; Michael E. Cain, MD; Ellene Sandoval; Leonard A. Katz, MD; and Peter S. Martin, MD; pose at the 2019 Gold Humanism Honor Society induction ceremony.

47 Physicians, Trainees Feted by Gold Humanism Society

Published June 7, 2019 This content is archived.

story by bill bruton

UB’s Richard Sarkin Medical Emeritus Faculty Chapter of the Gold Humanism Honor Society (GHHS) has inducted 47 exemplary medical students, residents, fellows and faculty members for 2019.


Leonard A. Katz, MD, professor emeritus of medicine — who founded the UB chapter of the GHHS in 2005 — welcomed the inductees and their families in attendance at the event.

Inductees Urged to Honor Human Needs, Values

All of the honorees — who are medical trainees and physician-teachers at various stages of their careers — have demonstrated excellence in humanistic clinical care, leadership, compassion and dedication to service.

“I’m most proud of this group of individuals who demonstrate all of the attributes of a physician who I would want to take care of me and my family,” said Michael E. Cain, MD, vice president for health sciences and dean of the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences. “Be the individual who understands, respects and honors fundamental human needs and values. It is that part of your character that the inductees are being honored for tonight.”

20 Residents and Fellows Inducted

Peter S. Martin, MD ’07, clinical assistant professor of psychiatry, GHHS member and resident chapter liaison, and Gregory Cherr, MD, associate professor of surgery and assistant dean for graduate medical education, led the induction of the following residents and fellows:

19 Medical Students Are Honored

Chapter co-advisor David A. Milling, MD ’93, senior associate dean for student and academic affairs, led the induction of the following third-year medical students, who make up about 13 percent of the Class of 2020:

  • Syed Ahmad Adil
  • Ronald Aaron Bola
  • Natasha Borrero
  • Ruth Cadet
  • Nikhita Chahal
  • Anisha Chava
  • Kelly Coughlin
  • Elise Grzeskiewicz
  • Holly Johnson
  • Tricia Mathew
  • Jacob Mojeski
  • Alissa Nizinski
  • Aurora Phillips
  • Kevin Schauer
  • Abigail Schubach
  • Jon Zelasko
  • Emily Zhou
  • Adrian Ziaggi
  • Patricia Zick

8 Faculty Members Inducted Into Honor Society

Cherr and Katz led the induction of the following faculty members:

Sandoval Receives Goldstein Scholarship

Fourth-year medical student and GHHS member Ellene Sandoval received the Dr. Howard R. Goldstein ’74 Memorial Humanitarian Scholarship.

Sandoval, who matched to a pediatrics residency in Los Angeles, also provided the chapter highlights.

The annual award provides one-year support for third- or fourth-year medical students.

Marshall Recognized for Tow Award

Dori R. Marshall, MD ’97, assistant dean and director of medical admissions and an assistant professor of psychiatry, was recognized for winning the Leonard Tow Humanism in Medicine Award. Medical students nominate outstanding role models for this award, which was presented during UB’s White Coat Ceremony in August.

A specialist in adolescent psychiatry, Marshall’s primary clinical interest is caring for young adults who need acute inpatient hospitalization.

The Tow Award is sponsored by the Arnold P. Gold Foundation and recognizes a faculty member who demonstrates outstanding compassion in the delivery of care; respect for patients, their families and health-care colleagues; and demonstrated clinical excellence.

Chapter Honors Former Associate Professor

The society is a program of the Arnold P. Gold Foundation, a not-for-profit organization that strives to elevate the values of humanism and professionalism in medicine worldwide.

UB’s more than 800 residents and fellows may nominate their peers into induction into a branch of the UB chapter, which is one of only 14 graduate medical education sections nationally that is affiliated with the society.

Each inductee is eligible to receive a small grant for a creative project to infuse and support humanism in training programs and hospitals.

Marcia Sarkin, GHHS member, was master of ceremonies for the event, which is named in memory of her late husband, Richard T. Sarkin, MD, EdM ’98, who was an associate professor of clinical pediatrics known for his teaching expertise and passion.

Milling and Sarkin led inductees and members in reciting the Gold Humanism Society oath.

Isuan “Suzy” Asikhia, MD, child and adolescent psychiatry fellow, sang stirring original songs she composed addressing mental health themes. She was accompanied by Michael DiGiacomo, MD ’09, clinical assistant professor of psychiatry, and Tom Fuchs, a student in the MD-PhD program.

The 2019 induction ceremony took place April 25 at the Saturn Club in Buffalo.

Learn More About Our Residency and Fellowship Programs

The University at Buffalo is internationally recognized as a leader in education, research and patient care, with a long history of excellence in medical education that began in 1846. We have achieved this recognition by blending academic excellence, exceptional bedside clinical teaching and thoughtful innovation designed to meet the changing needs of future clinical practitioners.

Our Residency and Fellowship Programs offer physicians-in-training outstanding opportunities to learn from clinicians who are among the best in their fields.