Ralph W. Brenner Endowment
Ralph W. Brenner lived his life supporting healthy foundations for children. As a longtime Chairman of the Board of Trustees for St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, his philanthropic work helped further strengthen the hospital’s position as one of the nation’s preeminent pediatric medical centers. His legacy of generosity extends into the next generation through the Ralph W. Brenner Endowed Chair in Pediatrics, which was established to invest in education and research.
Dr. Renee Turchi, Ralph W. Brenner Endowed Chair in Pediatrics
The current chair, Renee Turchi, MD, MPH, FAAP, is the medical director of the Center for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs at St. Christopher's Hospital for Children. She oversees a primary care practice dedicated to children and youth with special health care needs, including a fetal alcohol spectrum disorders program/NICU primary care follow-up program and grants. Her research and clinical work around care coordination, maternal/child health, and children and youth with special health care needs have been presented and published in multiple national forums. The Ralph W. Brenner Endowment supports her research in the areas of mental and behavioral health at St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children.
In 2006, pioneer Dr. Maria Delivoria-Papadopoulos, became the first recipient of the Ralph W. Brenner Endowed Chair in Pediatrics. With the endowment, she both furthered her research in neonatal medicine and mentored and trained other doctors in the care of the most fragile pediatric patients. Her incredible work lives on through her decades of contributions in neonatal hypoxia research, teaching, and bedside care modeled during her NICU “Meet-the-Baby” rounds. Her decades of influence earned her the title “Mother of Neonatology.”
Dr. Burton Edelstein became the second recipient in 2017. After practicing dentistry and teaching at Harvard School of Dental Medicine for 21 years, Dr. Edelstein turned his attention to Washington, DC, to help steer public policy to create lasting change for the most vulnerable children. With the endowment, he made strides in children’s oral health equity through the establishment of the Children’s Dental Health Project (CDPH). With the help of state and federal partners and legislative allies, a milestone moment for the CDPH came in 2009 when the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) was reauthorized with dental requirements and $100 million in new funding for children’s oral health.
- Key Research Conducted Using the Endowment: Small-area socioeconomic status and children’s oral health in a safety-net care delivery setting