HERE'S WHOSE MUG . . .
Some issues, every single respondent to the "Whose Mug" photo nails the right name. But the 13 people who wrote in about the photo at left included two mistaken guesses. Maybe those oh-so-'80s glasses proved a distraction!
But Jason Reynolds '99 didn't have any difficulty looking behind the big lenses. "David Nierenberg is the person shown in 'Whose Mug,'" Reynolds wrote. "Dr. Nierenberg was director of SBM, teacher of pharmacology, and also heavily involved in fourth-year education, so all know his 'mug.' I still remember him telling all of us to know our local pharmacists well because they will be a valuable resource. Of course, in the 12 years since taking that class, many of us in my class have seen the fall of the local independent pharmacy."
Rick Mamelok '72 also ID'd Niereneberg with ease, even though his time at DMS predated Nierenberg's arrival. "I am much too old to have had David as a professor at DMS," Mamelok wrote, "but he and I overlapped as clinical pharmacology fellows at the University of California, San Francisco, and after I had moved on to a faculty position at Stanford, David came a year later as chief resident there."
Ted Harris '60 also came to know Nierenberg in a realm other than the classroom. "If this is NOT David Nirenberg, then there is a slightly younger version of him at Dartmouth," Harris wrote. "David made a wonderful career move in taking the job at Dartmouth. The fit at DMS has been perfect. He is admired and respected by the students, faculty, and administration. I have particularly appreciated his efforts during his tenure as the councilor for the DMS chapter of Alpha Omega Alpha honor medical society, and his good choice in having Susan Harper be his successor." (Harris knows whereof he speaks regarding Nierenberg's role with AOA, since he's the national executive secretary for the society as well as the editor of its quarterly journal, The Pharos.)
As for Paul Kaplita, who was a postdoc at Dartmouth from 1982 to 1985, he connected with Nierenberg both inside and outside the ivory tower. "While woking as a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology," wrote Kaplita, "I used to help David chop firewood in his backyard on late autumn weekend afternoons. One time, his family dog became extremely agitated for no apparent reason. I drove David and the dog to the local veterinarian. The vet concluded that David's dog had eaten some spoiled crabapples and administered apomorphine to induce emesis. The dog quickly recovered. I recall vividly how David, the clinical phamacologist, was fascinated by this application of veterinary pharmacology."
Other respondents who recognized Nierenberg included David Conard, HS '81-84; Rebecca Pschirrer '92; physiologist Aniko Naray-Fejes-Toth (who pegged the setting of the photo as "in front of his HPLC, probably in Remsen/Vail"); Mark Schneider, an instructor in medicine; and a couple of administrators who work with Nierenberg: Kalindi Trietley (who chuckled that "some windshield wipers might be appropriate for those glasses") and Joyce Wagner.
One other respondent got the name right but didn't evidence as much certitude: "I think David Nierenberg--pharmacology?" guessed Jaan Sidorov, an '81-84 housestaff alum.
The guesses by the final two respondents were off the mark, but the names they came up with were of individuals who bear a more than passing resemblance to Nierenberg. An alum from the early '70s thought the photo was of Steve Galli '70. And an alum from the '40s was reminded by Nierenberg's visage of another distinguished faculty member, now deceased--plastic surgeon Radford Tanzer. (See the photos below of Galli and Tanzer for proof that they do indeed resemble Nierenberg.)
Steve Galli '70
HPLC machines, as well as this one's operator, have changed a bit since the "mug" photo was taken. But Nierenberg is still going strong at DMS--overseeing the MD curriculum as senior associate dean for medical education, teaching clinical pharmacology to fourth-years (in fact, he won the Association of American Medical Colleges' top national teaching award in 2008), and counseling against the use of pens or other give-aways emblazoned with drug-company logos (click here and here to read more about his work). He probably had little idea, back in 1981 when he arrived at DMS, what an impact he'd have at Dartmouth.
And little idea did Mamelok have, back in the 1970s when he crossed paths with Nierenberg in California, what fruit the contact would one day bear. As a result of that connection, Mamelok is now the proud owner of a mug emblazoned with the DMS shield (surely that's one logo Nierenberg wouldn't object to!), for he was the winner of this issue's mug drawing.