From the Editor

I BECOME INVESTED IN THE STORIES you read in URI Magazine the same way I do when reading a good novel–the more I read, the more I connect with the characters.

There are lots of great stories to tell about URI. Just take a look at Class Notes–URI alumni are out there working, creating, learning, living–changing the world. And there’s so much to say about the research, teaching, and outreach born in our labs, classrooms, and offices. What’s at the center of all these stories? Extraordinary characters–the people doing the work, coming up with new ideas, solving problems, and inspiring others.

Did you play a club sport at URI? We’d love to hear from you! Tell us why you played, what you remember most, or how the experience impacted your life after URI. Whatever your stories, please share them with us at

Take Tom Ryan, for example. You’ve probably heard his name and you might know he was the longtime CEO of CVS who’s given generously to URI over the years. When you read his story in this issue, you may also discover something new about the person behind the public persona. Everyone–a former professor, his family, his colleagues–says, in their own way, the same thing: He listens, he cares about people, he rolls up his sleeves, he never gives up. That kind of integrity is rare and remarkable. We are fortunate to have a strong character like Tom Ryan in our URI story; and, as is the case with strong characters, we are enriched and inspired by reading his story.

The same is true of house mother Deborah Lambrecht, ocean scientist/advocate Gyasi Alexander, activist/clinician Nicolle Potvin, writer Evan Schneider–and all the other characters who come to life in the pages of this issue. I hope you will enjoy their stories as much as I have.

– Barbara Caron, Editor-in-Chief