Taking an Oath

Sen. David Vitter,
Dr. Juan Gershanik, Wendy Vitter and Dr. Esteban Gershanik

Celebration of Commitment and Courage” was the title of an event held Aug. 25 honoring the 800-plus medical and surgical residents of the four local training programs—Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center New Orleans, East Jefferson General Hospital, Ochsner Clinical Foundation and Tulane University School of Medicine—for their dedication and compassion to the residents of the city. In the aftermath Hurricane Katrina, when the local health care system was in crisis due to a lack of doctors, these residents stayed in New Orleans to help rebuild the health care infrastructure.

Dr. Juan Gershanik served as chairman for the event, aided by a committee of physicians and community leaders. Held at the Shops at Canal Place, the evening began at 7 p.m. and more than 1,000 guests were entertained by Dr. Jazz, Julio and Cesar, and the Iguanas. Sixteen local food purveyors provided delicious cuisine for the evening, and the Republic Beverage Company provided drinks. The invitation and program featured a copy of artist George Rodrigue’s “You Can’t Drown the Blues,” which was one of two prints donated for the live auction. Children’s Hospital, Lee Michaels Fine Jewelry and Mimi’s were among those who donated items for the auction conducted by Tony Bently. Door prizes for honorees were donated by a number of local stores, arts groups, museums and restaurants. Before the event, the New Orleans City Council, Mayor Ray Nagin and Gov. Kathleen Blanco recognized honorees with special proclamations.

The event raised $100,000, which will be allocated to a special fund for
the continuing education of dedicated physicians and for efforts to retain them in the New Orleans area.

Dr. David Evans, Dr. Shannon Alwood, Carla Major and Gary Solomon

Lisa Manzella, Dr. Ron Amedee and Jessica Elias

Dr. Luis Arencibia, Dr. Jimmy Guidry, Tom Oreck and Marshall Oreck

City Councilman Arnie Fielkow, Bryan Balmadrid and Scott Cowen

Dr. Ariane Stevens,
Pavan Chava and Dr. Mira Olson