December 12, 2017

Endowed Research Fund in the Department of Dermatology honors father and son alumni legacy

Ronald Kerwin, M.D. '76, Res. '81 and his wife, Cheryl Kerwin, first established an endowed research fund in the Department of Dermatology in 2012 as a way to support the Wayne State University School of Medicine during the Pivotal Moments campaign.

"The School of Medicine has given me a lot, and Cheryl and I decided to establish the research fund as a way to give back," Dr. Ronald Kerwin said. "When our son Leonard Kerwin, M.D. '09, Res. '14, started working with the department in 2016, we decided to rename the fund to recognize him. We are so proud that Leonard went to my medical school alma mater and specialized in dermatology."

Today, the Dr. Ronald D. Kerwin and Dr. Leonard Y. Kerwin Endowed Research Fund is advancing dermatology research at the School of Medicine. Dr. Leonard Kerwin assists with educating future generations of dermatologists through his role as an assistant professor and clinical educator in the Department of Dermatology. The father and son alums also work together at Associated Dermatologists, a successful practice with four locations throughout southeast Michigan.

"I enjoy training residents and engaging in exciting clinical and academic opportunities. Dermatology faculty are always active in developing new research advancements," Dr. Leonard Kerwin said. "When I attend conferences, I am happy to see the Wayne State name being recognized for our research."

Like his son, Dr. Ronald Kerwin has been pleased with the department's spotlight on a national platform. "The School of Medicine and the Department of Dermatology maintain high-quality education and research initiatives that deserve the national recognition."

Under the leadership of the Hermann Pinkus Chair of Dermatology Darius Mehregan, M.D., the department has grown and continues to improve its clinical training and research enterprise. "Dr. Mehregan sets a great example. He focuses on pioneering research that has an impact on the community and on resident education," Dr. Leonard Kerwin said. "Philanthropy helps enable the department to sustain the resources needed to do this."

"I am truly grateful to the Kerwin family for their dedication to the Department of Dermatology. We have been very fortunate to have the strong support of our Dermatology alumni. Gifts to support research and education are still in great need, especially with cuts to research and educational spending," Dr. Mehregan said.

"The leadership team has created a welcoming environment, almost family-like," Dr. Ronald Kerwin said. "I think that's part of what makes the residency program and the department so successful. We hope to see the Department of Dermatology continue to thrive in the future."

Leonard, Ronald and Cheryl Kerwin see the impact philanthropy has on the Department of Dermatology, and hope that others will see the importance of philanthropically supporting research in the School of Medicine. To learn more about supporting the School of Medicine, contact Lori Robitaille at or 313-993-4070.

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