This article is from the archives of the UB Reporter.

People etc.

Published: January 6, 2005


The Q&A in the Dec. 9 issue of the Reporter incorrectly placed the Department of Biotechnical and Clinical Laboratory Sciences in the School of Public Health and Health Professions. The department is housed in the School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.

Pat Metheny Group to perform in CFA

The Center for the Arts will present the Pat Metheny Group at 8 p.m. Feb. 17 in the Mainstage theater in the CFA, North Campus.

Over the course of more than 20 years as a recording artist, guitarist Pat Metheny has released album after album, each one documenting another aspect of his unique musical journey. Exhibiting an insatiable creative energy, Metheny has participated in just about every avenue of modern music-making that the early 21st century might offer a musician. Seemingly bent on blurring and obliterating stylistic boundaries at every opportunity, he has created an expansively impressive body of work that includes a series of highly influential trio recordings, award winning solo albums, scores for hit Hollywood motion pictures, duets with major artists such as Charlie Haden and Jim Hall, and collaborations with such other significant figures in modern music as Ornette Coleman, Steve Reich and many others.

For legions of his fans worldwide, there is no setting that defines Metheny the musician more than his role as bandleader of one of the most acclaimed and influential musical ensembles of the past quarter century—the Pat Metheny Group. As the only group in history to win seven consecutive Grammy awards for seven consecutive releases, the Pat Metheny Group has occupied a nearly indefinable musical territory that is accessible to listeners of all kinds while never compromising a unique compositional and improvisational integrity that is unparalleled among contemporary and mainstream jazz groups.

Founded by Metheny in 1977, the Pat Metheny Group has traveled the world playing and selling out concerts, festivals and clubs in more than 40 countries, becoming one of the most active and popular touring acts of any kind anywhere.

The Pat Metheny Group World Tour follows the release of the group's newest album, "The Way Up," on Jan. 25 by Nonesuch Records. Metheny and his longtime pianist/collaborator, Lyle Mays, join bassist and coproducer Steve Rodby, drummer Antonio Sanchez, harmonica player Grégoire Maret and trumpet player Cuong Vu.

Tickets are $42, $36 and $30, and are available at the CFA box office from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and at all Ticketmaster locations.

For more information call 645-ARTS.

UB to commemorate 205th birthday of Millard Fillmore

The 205th anniversary of the birth of Millard Fillmore, UB's first chancellor and 13th president of the United States, will be observed in ceremonies to be held at 10 a.m. tomorrow in Forest Lawn Cemetery.

Kevin R. Seitz, vice president for university services, will deliver the memorial address at the annual observance honoring Fillmore, who played a major role in the founding of numerous cultural, civic and community organizations in Erie County.

Born on Jan. 7, 1800, Fillmore was instrumental in founding the Buffalo & Erie County Historical Society, the Buffalo Club and Buffalo General Hospital.

His activities also led to the creation of the Buffalo & Erie County Public Library, the Buffalo Fine Arts Academy and the Buffalo Society of Natural Sciences.

Some historians credit the former teacher, postmaster, lawyer and member of Congress with establishing the White House Library.

Basinski named curator of Poetry Collection

Michael Basinski has been named curator of the Poetry Collection.



Basinski replaces Robert Bertholf, who had served as curator of the Poetry Collection since 1979. Bertholf has been named Charles D. Abbott Scholar of Poetry and the Arts.

Basinski, who received his doctorate in English from UB, is an acknowledged expert on modern poetry and has worked in several capacities for the University Libraries. He has been the associate curator of the Poetry Collection since 1993 and is the poetry area chair for the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association national conference.

Basinski's scholarly work has focused on small-press poetry. He is a working artist and visual, concrete and performance poet whose work is published regularly in literary magazines. He currently is working on a critical study of underground writer Charles Bukowski and a book of critical essays on poet Gerald Locklin. He regularly contributes articles on these poets and others to journals, encyclopedias, and reference books.

Basinski has written dozens of small books of various forms of poetry. His visual poetry has been exhibited this year at Harvard University, the University of Maine at Orono, the Burchfield-Penney Art Center in Buffalo and the Oculus Gallery in Tokyo. His performance group, BuffFluxus, comprised of UB graduate and undergraduate poets and performance artists, performs nova- and retro-Fluxus works on a regular basis.

Mark named UCGIS "Researcher of the Year"

David M. Mark, professor of geography and director of the UB site of the National Center for Geographic Information and Analysis (NCGIA), has been named "Researcher of the Year" by the University Consortium for Geographic Information Science (UCGIS).



The UCGIS Research Award is presented to scientists who make outstanding research contributions to geographic information science (GIS). While the award typically recognizes outstanding research work or a series of works published in a peer-reviewed medium, as well as such other research contributions as patents, software packages and nonrefereed publications, Mark is being recognized for "numerous and high-quality contributions to the geographic information science research literature, particularly during the past half-dozen years."

The UCGIS citation calls Mark "an outstanding researcher in geographic information science."

"His work has been at the forefront of the advances in 'GIScience' since the inception of this field, and has had a huge impact on the GIScience research community in general," the citation says.

"His pioneering work on cognitive and linguistic aspects of spatial relations marked the beginning of a new era in GIScience research, going way beyond the then state of the art.

"His 1989 AutoCarto paper, 'Concepts of Space and Spatial Language,' as well as his subsequent leadership in the organization of the NATO ASI at Las Navas in 1990, formed an entire subdiscipline within geographic information science, which is represented by the highly successful COSIT conference series.

"In addition, Mark introduced to GIS research the notion of an experimental component through his seminal work on human subject testing of spatial relations, and reinforced such an approach to GIScience research later through his work on geo-ontologies, which has been among the most prominent threads in GIScience research during the past decade."

Dubbed "a true believer in interdisciplinary research," Mark has embraced the advancement of knowledge through intense and sustained collaboration with linguists, psychologists, philosophers and others across disciplinary boundaries, the citation says.

Moreover, as ontologies have emerged as an important topic within the semantic Web community, Mark has studied the topic in the geographic domain from a cross-cultural and cross-linguistic aspect, "aiming for a more deeply rooted understanding of the semantics of terms typically used for describing geographic phenomena," the citation says.

A UB faculty member since 1981, Mark also serves as director of UB's National Science Foundation-funded IGERT (Integrative Graduate Education and Research Training Program) doctoral program in geographic information sciences. He has been a research scientist with the NCGIA since its inception in 1988 and has been director since 1995.

He has written or coauthored more than 200 publications, including 76 refereed articles, three edited books, 20 book chapters, 64 conference proceedings articles and 27 technical reports. He also has made about 160 academic presentations at professional meetings or at universities and government agencies.

Software helps persons with disabilities "point and click"

Using a computer mouse can be a difficult and embarrassing task for children and adults with disabilities affecting fine motor skills.


But a new software application, available soon, promises to ease the frustration of using a mouse—and provide greater computer access—for people who suffer from cerebral palsy, traumatic brain injury or other disabilities that make it very difficult to point and click.

PointSmart, developed by Infogrip of Ventura, Calif., with assistance from UB's Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center on Technology Transfer (T2RERC), helps stabilize erratic mouse movements by allowing users to adjust the sensitivity of those movements beyond standard speed and acceleration adjustments found on most personal computers.

A beta version of PointSmart will be available for consumer testing this month, and a final version of the product is expected to be on the market in March.

PointSmart is one of a handful of new products recently developed, improved or tested by T2RERC, which works with companies to research, evaluate, transfer and commercialize assistive devices for persons affected by disabilities. The center is one unit under the umbrella of the Center for Assistive Technology, which is part of the School of Public Health and Health Professions.

"We're a one-of-a-kind research center," says Stephen Bauer, clinical assistant professor of rehabilitation science and director of T2RERC. "We're entirely focused on transferring beneficial technologies and products, like PointSmart, to persons affected by disabilities and older Americans."

PointSmart features a joystick mode that starts the mouse in one direction and allows it to continue without continuous control until the user chooses to change direction or select an object. PointSmart users also can change the functionality of mouse clicks and buttons—switching the left click and right click functions, for example.

For visually impaired users, PointSmart can display very large and easy-to-read mouse pointers on the computer screen.

"In schools, PointSmart will allow children with disabilities that affect fine motor control to effectively access computers that their classmates use on a daily basis," says Wendy Strobel, T2RERC project manager. "It will allow all children to learn together on computers in their classrooms.

"In work environments, people with disabilities that affect fine motor control will be able to use a mouse without the frustration of missed targets or misplaced information—misjudgments that often affect productivity negatively," she says.

Moreover, Americans who have aged into a disabling condition—through arthritis, stroke or other malady—can continue to access personal computers using PointSmart, Strobel points out.

Other new products developed, improved or tested by T2RERC include:

  • CaptionSync, by Automatic Sync Technologies, an automated captioning system for the hearing-impaired or learning-disabled that within 10 minutes can develop captions from any electronic media file and its transcript.

  • For the visually impaired, the PDA Line Magnifier and Text Isolator, which attaches easily to any personal digital assistant.

  • The UpStop Wheelchair Braking System, developed with AliMed. The only automatic braking system for manual wheelchairs, it is designed to reduce patient falls.

  • An Automated Pill Crusher for patients with arthritis or Alzheimer's disease who have difficulty crushing their medications.

  • The Black & Decker Digital Advantage Countertop Oven™, a combination toaster/convection oven built with user-friendly features for the elderly.

Another T2RERC collaborative product, the Black & Decker Lids-Off™ Automatic Jar Opener for people with poor grip strength, was expected to be a big seller again this holiday season, says James Leahy, T2RERC project administrative officer, who worked with Black & Decker to commercialize the jar opener in 2003.

According Leahy, T2RERC soon will begin to work with other major consumer products companies, in addition to Black & Decker, through the center's new Fortune 500 Project.

"We're showing companies how they can broaden their market by increasing the usability and accessibility features of mainstream consumer products," Leahy explains. "These companies are very interested in transgenerational design—designing products with usability that spans generations—because they're very attuned to the fact that baby boomers are aging and will need products made with features that ensure usability and access as they age."

T2RERC is funded by a five-year, $4.75 million grant from the National Institute on Disability Rehabilitation Research.

Garvey wins alumni award from medical school

Honored for his service to UB, the community and the medical profession, Ronald "Skip" Garvey, M.D. '53, chairman for Brit Systems, Inc., has received the UB Medical Alumni Association's Distinguished Alumni Award.

Margaret W. Paroski, interim dean of the School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and UB interim vice president of health affairs, praised Garvey as "dedicated to both the medical profession and this institution, demonstrating leadership in all that he undertakes.

"Skip also is a wonderful role model for our students, achieving great success as a doctor, teacher and mentor," she added, "I'm delighted to have this opportunity to publicly recognize a physician of his stature."

Paroski noted that as chair of the medical school's fund-raising committee during "The Campaign for UB: Generation to Generation," which raised more than $291 million, Garvey provided her with invaluable support and direction.

Born in Olean, Garvey has enjoyed a long and exemplary career in medicine, health administration and teaching. Receiving a bachelor's degree from Harvard College in 1949, he earned his medical degree from UB in 1953 and master's degree in health care administration from the University of Dallas in 1986.

During his career, he has served as a flight surgeon in the U.S. Air Force, a research fellow at the National Institutes of Health and faculty member and administrator at the University of Texas Southwestern. Garvey maintained a private practice in surgery from 1961-83 and was team physician for the Dallas Cowboys from 1963-72 and a consultant for the team from 1972-93.

From 1997-98, Garvey served as interim director and then as president of the University of Texas Health Center at Tyler from 1998-2002. In May 2003, he was named president emeritus by the University of Texas System Board of Regents.

Over the years, Garvey has received numerous awards and honors. In 1991, the Health Level Seven Commission presented him with the "Industry Pioneer Award," and in 1996 the Zale Lipshy University Hospital presented him with the Ralph Rogers Award for his work as an Outstanding Board Member Volunteer.

In 1998, Garvey received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from the University of Dallas Alumni Association. That same year, the UB Medical Alumni Association honored him with a Lifetime Achievement Award.

Throughout his career, Garvey has served in various leadership capacities with numerous organizations, including the American Cancer Society, Catholic Family Services, the Visiting Nurses Association of Dallas, Children's Oncology Services of Texas, Dallas County Medical Society and the St. Paul Hospital Foundation. He also served as the finance chairman for the Texas Women's University Board of Regents, and as the performance improvement chair for the Zale Lipshy University Hospital Board of Directors.

Bequest to help dental students complete education

A bequest from the late Lois Mae Rinck is benefiting the School of Dental Medicine and the first dental student selected to receive the financial assistance it provides.

The widow of the late Carlton F. Rinck, D.D.S. '46, Rinck included UB in her will with a $165,000 donation for an endowed fund to help third- and fourth-year dental students.

For the first Rinck award recipient, the financial assistance was critical.

"The money was so helpful and came at a time when I was out of options and looking into taking a leave of absence due to financial circumstances and family and health problems," said the anonymous third-year dental student. "Without this loan, I would probably not be in dental school right now."

Rinck, who died in 2003, stipulated that her donation be used for an endowed fund with the interest earned used for awards offered in the name of her late husband. Recipients must pay back these awards, or loans, over a five-year period beginning after they have worked for seven years.

Richard Buchanan, dean of the School of Dental Medicine, praised Lois Mae Rinck and her generosity.

"With tuition rising, the dental school, now more than ever, is thrilled to be able to provide this assistance to students in need," said Buchanan.

"We are grateful to Mrs. Rinck, not only for the gift, but also for her foresight in making it a loan program, which ensures that this assistance will be around for many years, creating a 'safety net' for students to meet the unexpected expenses that might otherwise force them out of school."

As requested by Rinck in her will, the dean will choose the Dr. Carlton F. Rinck Memorial Fund award recipients.

UCI to host computer workshop

The University Community Initiative's Resource Center will host a Computer Basics Workshop from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Jan. 15 in 100 Allen Hall, South Campus.

The workshop, presented by the Western New York Computer Society, will offer group training in the basics of computer use. Topics will include how a computer works, how to set up a computer, how to load software, how

to obtain and use Internet access and how to use email.

A question-and-answer session will follow the presentation.

There is no charge to attend, but space is limited and reservations are required. To reserve a spot in the workshop, call UCI at 829-3099 by Wednesday.

For more information, visit the UCI Web site at or call 829-3099