$2 Million Gift from Fine Family to Support Alzheimer’s Care, Research

Aug. 18, 2014

A $2 million gift from the Robert Fine Trust will create the Julius, Helen, and Robert Fine Professorship at the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC). This is the third professorship that has been endowed in the Fine family name. 

“Professorships are the building blocks of a great university,” said Joel Seligman, president of the University of Rochester. “We are deeply grateful to the Fine Family for their decades of support for the Medical Center. This gift will serve as a lasting tribute and will further enable the groundbreaking work being done in neurology and neurosurgery.”

The newest Fine Professorship is one of 83 new endowed professorships that have been created during The Meliora Challenge, the $1.2 billion campaign for the University of Rochester. The Campaign surpassed its goal to create 80 endowed professorships in May, which supports a faculty support goal of $350 million before the Campaign concludes on June 30, 2016.

The extended Fine family has battled with numerous neurological conditions. The desire to help others who have struggled with these diseases and their gratitude for the care they received at the University of Rochester has led to creation of three endowed professorships on their behalf.   The most recent gift will be used to support Alzheimer’s disease care and research.  

“As the first member of my family to go to college, I have always thought fondly of my time at the University of Rochester,” said Paul Fine, M.D., clinical professor emeritus with the UR Medicine Department of Medicine. “I am pleased to have been able to find ways to give back to this institution that means so much to me, my family, and this community.”

Fine received his undergraduate (1957) and medical degrees (1961) from the University of Rochester, where he also conducted his residency training (1966).  

 “The continued generosity of the Fine family has been essential to our efforts to strengthen research and patient care at the Medical Center,” said Mark Taubman, M.D., dean of the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry and University vice president for health sciences. “This gift, in addition to the family’s 20 years of support, will enable us to build the programs necessary to develop new scientific insights and provide the highest level of care for patients with neurological disorders.”

In 1995, Joseph Aresty gave $2 million to the URMC to create the Helen Aresty Fine and Irving Fine Professorship in Neurology in memory of his sister, who struggled with Lou Gehrig’s disease, and in honor of his brother-in-law. The professorship is currently held by neurologist Richard Moxley, M.D., director of the Neuromuscular Disease Center.

In 2000, a generous gift from the Chester and Dorris Carlson Charitable Trust established the Paul H. Fine Professorship in Medicine, which is held by William Hall, M.D., a gerontologist at Highland Hospital and director of the UR Medicine Center for Healthy Aging. This gift, which was given to the University at the direction of Catherine Carlson, was made in recognition of Dr. Fine’s exemplary skills and distinguished career as a physician. 

Dr. Fine and his wife Rochelle also support the Fine Family Merit Scholarship for medical students at the University of Rochester.