The Wilmot Cancer Center Board
Founding Chair Linda Davey established the Wilmot Cancer Center Board in 1997 as an advisory group to assist the Cancer Center in community awareness, cancer education, patient relations and fundraising. Active committees include Nominating, Patient and Family Advisory Council, and Development.
Our current Chair, Robert Kessler, has served on the Board since 2008. He is currently a member of the Development Committee and serves on the Discovery Ball Steering Committee
If you would like more information about becoming a board member, or about serving on one of our committees, please contact Marianne Leahy, senior director of development, at (585) 276-4717.
Active Board Members
Michael Buckley is certainly familiar with board work and, in addition to his service with the Wilmot Cancer Center board, is former Chairman of Highland Hospital Board of Directors and of the Highland Hospital Foundation, and former board member and officer of the YWCA. Michael also is an officer and legal counsel of the Rochester Area Community Foundation and a board member of the University of Rochester Medical Center and Highland Hospital, as well as the legal counsel for the Wilmot Cancer Center. Michael is a partner at Harter, Secrest & Emery and resides with his wife, Mary, in Rochester.
Alvaro Cadena is the former president and CEO of Batavia-based Graham Corp, where he worked for 35 years and had extensive experience in international business. He retired in 2004 but has remained active as a consultant. He is also a member of the Advisory Board of the SUNY Brockport Business Administration Program. Cadena is a cancer survivor and cites the excellent care he received while a patient at the Wilmot Cancer Center as a driving factor in his interest in joining the board. He is passionate about research and learning about scientific advances underway at the Wilmot Cancer Center. He resides in Pittsford with his wife, Martha.
A resident of Brighton, Rina Chessin joined the board after seeing the dedication and compassion of Wilmot doctors, nurses and support staff when they cared for her father, Michael Futerman, founder of Hahn Automotive. Chessin’s family has generously supported the Wilmot Cancer Center, and by joining the board she further demonstrates her support for the organization. She is active in the Jewish Community Federation, Center for Holocaust Awareness, Jewish Education Committee and the American Red Cross.
DEL MONTE, Elaine
Elaine Del Monte was inspired by news of the advances in cancer care and research at the Wilmot Cancer Center, primarily when she learned that scientists at the University of Rochester Medical Center developed the key component of the Gardasil cervical cancer vaccine to prevent infection with the human papilloma virus (HPV). Del Monte, who lives in Brighton, is also active with the Rochester City Ballet.
Richard DiMarzo, senior vice president of wealth management and senior portfolio management director for Morgan Stanley Smith Barney LLC, joined the board after supporting his late wife, Judy, during her cancer treatment. Throughout her illness, Richard became increasingly involved with the Wilmot Cancer Center because he knew first-hand the value of the work being accomplished there. In addition to his Board appointment, he remains active on the Discovery Ball Steering and Corporate Underwriting committees.
Michael Donnelly, a longtime communications professional, has been active with the Wilmot Cancer Center for several years. A pancreatic cancer survivor, Donnelly has been a member of the Patient and Family Advisory Council and supports the Discovery Ball. He is consultant with Employee Relations, Inc., DBM and the Italian American Heritage Foundation. Previously, he was Vice President of Organizational Development for Easter Seals New York and,for more than 20 years, worked in communications for Eastman Kodak Co. He and his wife, Helen, live in Penfield.
Janet Felosky has been president of Monroe Tractor for 20 years. The family-owned business was founded by her father in 1951 and her sister, Sandy, and son, Chris, also work at Monroe. She lives with her husband, Greg, in Pittsford. She lost a sister to cancer in 1983, and since then her parents and sisters have supported cancer research.
Marc Fischer, senior member of The Fischer Group, is an institutional consulting director and Citi Family Office senior advisor. He is a member of numerous boards including local schools, churches, hospitals and non-profit organizations. Fischer has been active within the Medical Center and received the Miracle Maker Award from the Golisano Children’s Hospital at Strong in 1995. An avid, competitive sailor, Marc and his wife, Laura, have three children.
HAMMER, James E.
James E. Hammer joined the Wilmot Cancer Center Board in 2004. Jim is the President and CEO of Hammer Lithograph Corporation. Having had cancer touch his family, Jim is committed to doing all he can to fight the disease. He and his wife, Donna, reside in Mendon and served as chairs for the 2010 Discovery Ball.
Having lost close friends and family to cancer, Gary is committed to having an impact on the disease by supporting the Wilmot Cancer Center’s mission to find cures. His wife, Laura, is active on Discovery Ball planning committees. Gary is president of Zeller Corporation and has been involved with the Hillside Work-Scholarship Connection and McQuaid Jesuit High School, as well as a number of organizations that Zeller Corporation supports.
John Holtz, who owns several well-known automobile dealerships in Rochester, has been an active sponsor of many organizations that support people with cancer and joined Wilmot Cancer Center Board in 2006. He also supports Daystar, Garth Fagan Dance Company, Greater Rochester Enterprise, Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation and Golisano's Children's Hospital. He resides in Pittsford with his wife, Seana.
Tom is President and CEO of Employee Relations Associates, a full-service human resource and talent management organization featuring local presence and international reach. He is one of the founders of “Eyes on the Future,” a regional economic summit to reinforce the region’s ability to collaborate, innovate and sustainably grow. Tom has had family members affected by cancer and is committed to being involved to help ensure that our community has access to world-class care and research.
Barbara Juskiw joined the board after supporting a long-time friend and close family member through their cancer treatments. She and her husband, Nick, generously supported the Wilmot Cancer Center comprehensive campaign and she continues their support with her presence on the Board. In addition to her board appointment, Barbara serves as co-chair of the Wilmot Cancer Center Community Outreach and Special Events Committee. She and her husband also support the Golisano Children’s Hospital at Strong. They reside in Webster.
KESSLER, Mr. Robert W.
Robert W. Kessler, currently the Board Chair, is an attorney and partner at Woods Oviatt Gilman LLP. Appointed to the Wilmot Cancer Center Board in 2004, Bob serves as a member of the Board’s Nominating and Development committees, and is a member of the Discovery Ball Steering Committee. He is also actively involved at the Rochester Area Community Foundation and the Otetiana Council of Boy Scouts of America. He and his wife, Susan, reside in Pittsford.
Mark Kokanovich, a pancreatic cancer survivor, joined the board as a progression of his volunteer activity. He serves as co-chair of the Patient and Family Advisory Council and has been active in the volunteer and ambassador programs. Mark worked in the metal working machinery industry for 22 years and now supports many non-profit and youth sports organizations. He is president of the Brighton Board of Education and a member of the town’s Parks and Recreation Citizens Advisory Board. He lives in Brighton with his wife, Jean Maess.
Kathy Landers is a proud cancer survivor committed to supporting Wilmot’s scientific research initiatives. Co-owner of Landers Management, a real estate development and management firm, Landers currently serves on the Discovery Ball Corporate Underwriting Committee and previously served on the culinary and decorating committee. Kathy and her husband, Peter, also support the Golisano Children’s Hospital at Strong, University of Rochester Athletic Department, and the Multiple Sclerosis Society.
Michael Linehan, grandson of the Cancer Center’s namesake, James P. Wilmot, is president and owner of Colie’s Cafés, and has been involved with the Wilmot Cancer Center for many years. He and his wife, Carolyn, have both been active on Discovery Ball planning committees and currently co-chair the Cancer Center’s young professionals organization, the Wish List Society.
MCCLUSKI, Stephen C.
Stephen C. McCluski was formerly the Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Bausch & Lomb. He continues to serve on several corporate and non-profit boards and was appointed to the Wilmot Cancer Center Board in 2004. He is a cancer survivor who was treated at the Wilmot Cancer Center. Steve and his wife, Kim, reside in Pittsford.
Carol Mullin, a breast cancer survivor, joined the board to advance her commitment to breast cancer research. As an active member of the Breast Cancer Coalition of Rochester, she supported local research into the disease. A retired lawyer, Mullin is also active with the Landmark Society of Western New York and lives in Brighton.
Gerry Pierce, senior vice president of human resources for Wegmans Food Markets, is proud to serve on the Wilmot Cancer Center Board. He truly believes in the Cancer Center’s mission and strength of the organization which saved his life. Gerry is active in a variety of organizations in the community, including serving as board chair for the Hillside Work-Scholarship Connection, and co-chair of the New York State Workforce Investment Board’s Emerging Worker Sub-committee. He’s also a member of the Hillside Agencies Board of Governors. Gerry and his wife, Priscilla, reside in Pittsford.
Jeff Pierce further strengthens his commitment to the Wilmot Cancer Center by joining the board. He became involved with the Cancer Center several years ago after losing both his father and a longtime friend to cancer. He has been a member of the discovery Ball Corporate Underwriting Commtiee and his wife, Patrice, was previously co-chair of the Ball Culinary and Decorating Committee. Jeff is senior vice president of UBS Financial Services and serves on the board for Irondequoit Country Club.
Larry Rabinowitz is a vice president and senior trust officer at JPMorgan and joined the board after learning of the quality of care and research offered at the Wilmot Cancer Center. He has had several colleagues and close friends affected by cancer and was interested in being involved with an organization that is making an impact on this disease. He is a former president of the Estate Planning Council of Rochester and serves on the board of the Jewish Home of Rochester and formerly served on the board of Lifetime Care. His wife, Karen, is an attorney at the University of Rochester and they live in Brighton with their three children.
Donald Rhoda, owner of The Red Barn Gentlemen’s Apparel store in Pittsford Plaza, continues his support of the Wilmot Cancer Center through his work on the board. Don served as a member of the Campaign Steering Committee and he and his wife, Pamela, have been active on Discovery Ball planning committees, also serving as co-chairs of the 2006 Ball. He is very active in the community, supporting various organizations such as the Epilepsy Foundation and George Eastman House.
Greg Smith, president of Jay Advertising, joins the board as a cancer survivor anxious to provide input and support. He saw a need for expanded fundraising, marketing, and patient education during his treatment and is eager to share his time and talents to enhance these areas. He currently serves on the Discovery Ball Steering Committee, and also serves on the boards for Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, Lifetime Assistance Foundation, Arts and Cultural Council for Greater Rochester, and Rochester Children’s Theatre. In addition, Greg serves on the marketing committee for the Rochester Area Community Foundation.
Dennis Wilmot, vice president of leasing and development for Wilmorite Management Group, is a grandson of James P. Wilmot, for whom our Cancer Center is named. He joins the board to continue his family’s commitment and because of the experience of family and friends who have recently faced cancer. Having long-admired the innovative path taken by the Wilmot Cancer Center to find new therapies to beat this disease, he is honored to be offered the opportunity to be a part of the Board. Dennis currently serves on the Discovery Ball Steering Committee, and is active with the Constellation Brands-Marvin Sands Performing Arts Center, Finger Lakes Community College Foundation and Country Club of Rochester. He resides in Rochester with his wife, Katie, and their children.
WILMOT, Paul J.
Paul J. “PJ” Wilmot is president of Wilmorite Inc., and like others in his family, wants to continue the Wilmot legacy of supporting cancer care and research. He was a member of the Wilmot Comprehensive Campaign Steering Committee and has been a strong supporter of the Discovery Ball and other major fund-raisers for the Wilmot Cancer Center. He and his wife, Tami, reside in Pittsford with their daughter.
ZICARI, Bruce B. II
Bruce B. Zicari II, a CPA and partner at The Bonadio Group, joined the Wilmot Cancer Center Board in 2004. He and his family founded Nancy & Friends Fighting Cancer, Inc., and they contribute research funds to the Wilmot Cancer Center. Bruce served on the Campaign Steering Committee and the Discovery Ball Corporate Underwriting Committee. He is actively involved in the community with many charitable organizations including Rochester Italian Charities and the Breast Cancer Coalition. Bruce and his wife, Hope, reside in Rochester with their daughter.
Faculty Board Members
Yuhchyau Chen, M.D., Ph.D.
Jonathan Friedberg, M.D.
Alokk Khorana, M.D.
Hucky Land, Ph.D.
Rabih Salloum, M.D.
Judy Wilmot Linehan
Jim Ryan, Jr.
Ex-Officio Board Members
Bradford C. Berk, M.D., PhD.
Jonathan Friedberg, M.D.
Mark Taubman, M.D.