From the time she was a teenager, two life changing events fueled Gerianne Tringali DiPiano’s capacity to make a difference. The first was her beloved grandfather’s diagnosis of pancreatic cancer “with few prospects available to extend his life.” The second was her interaction with her high school biology teacher who would become her first mentor. Together these two events and people would drive her “passion for science and scientific investigation (that) would ultimately lead (her) to a career in the United States Pharmaceutical industry.”
From there it was not a far stretch of the imagination that her drive and determination would lead to her founding of a company that strives to make a difference.
“FemmePharma was created to deliver the difference in women’s health for diseases otherwise under researched but for which there is high value for women,” DiPiano told those assembled for the University’s annual Founders’ Day celebration on Feb. 23, 2012. “Diseases such as endometriosis, the leading cause of infertility, breast disease, and gynecologic cancers, are therapeutic areas where FemmePharma’s products will be life changing.”
DiPiano, who serves as president, chief executive officer, and board chairman of FemmePharma Global Healthcare, Inc., is the inventor on over 30 patents covering compositions and methods of use for therapeutic options for diseases of women.
It is in recognition of her “entrepreneurial spirit and leadership in the improvement of women’s health and the pharmaceutical industry; and (her) continued dedication to innovation and excellence” that DiPiano received the University’s highest honor: an Honorary Doctor of Science Degree.
“I am truly grateful for this honor today but what inspires my team and me to do more, to stay the course, and to create what we imagine is the positive impact and life changing difference our therapeutic options will provide for each patient,” she said.
In addition to the honorary degree, the University also recognized a faculty member and a student with awards of merit.
Eleonora Gianti, a PhD candidate in the biochemistry, embodied the innovative and entrepreneurial spirit of the University’s founders through her research. Her thesis work comprises three individual projects, all related to development of cancer therapeutics, and according to her nominating letter, she has done enough to fill two dissertations. She is considered by the chemistry and biochemistry department as truly one of their most outstanding students.
On the faculty side, Assistant Professor of Chemistry Dr. Alexander Sidorenko “has developed a number of research projects with focus on photonics, optoelectronics, molecular electronics, drug delivery and cellular biology applications of polymer science.” His letter of support indicates that he “manages to maintain a successful balance between high profile research and enthusiastic teaching and mentorship.” At the University for just three years, Dr. Sidorenko continues to grow his research and teaching with new projects and new courses.