Monday, September 21, 2020
AUB alumni and friends at Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University didn’t waste any time. Within days of the August 4 explosion in the Beirut port, Dr. Sagar Lonial, chair of the Department of Hematology and Medical Oncology, emailed his colleagues asking them to “consider donating to the AUBMC Disaster Response to the August 4 Beirut Explosion Fund.” In a message he sent on August 12, Winship Executive Director Dr. Walter J. Curran, Jr. wrote, “We are saddened by this tragic event and join the world in grieving for the victims, their families, and all of Lebanon.” He went on to say, “Winship stands in support of the people of Beirut and our colleagues during this challenging time.”
“The outpouring of support from the Atlanta community for Lebanon and for AUB since August 4th has been amazing,” said Associate Director of Development Angela Khoury, who is based in Atlanta. “I am overwhelmed, but not surprised. The Atlanta community is very special.” The bond between Winship and AUB is especially strong these days as current AUB President Fadlo R. Khuri was the deputy director of Winship before he became AUB president in 2015. “I was deeply touched to receive such heartfelt and generous support from so many good friends at Winship,” said Khuri. “The support that we at AUB – and that the people of Lebanon – have received in recent weeks has been enormously gratifying.”
There are many AUB alumni working at Winship – and in other units at Emory University, including Dr. Fuad el-Rassi (MD ’06), an assistant professor in the Department of Hematology and Medical Oncology. El-Rassi is also the president of the WAAAUB Atlanta Chapter. “The Atlanta Chapter and Emory University have strong ties. There are several AUB alumni who have joined Emory University over the years including our own president, Dr. Khuri. It benefits both AUB and Emory to keep building this relationship – especially now when our alma mater and Beirut are going through difficult times,” says el-Rassi. Another AUB graduate, Dr. Nour M. Moukalled was recently awarded the H.J. Khoury Fellowship in Leukemia and Bone Marrow Transplantation, which is named for Angela Khoury’s late husband who was a member of the Winship faculty for 13 years.