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The Summa Foundation Names First Robert F. Kepley, M.D. Orthopaedic Fellow

Date: 06.17.2011
Contact: Erica Rosenthal Phone: (330) 375-3052

Contact: Erica Rosenthal, Phone: (330) 375-3052, Email:

AKRON, Ohio, June 17, 2011 ¯ The Summa Foundation is pleased to announce Matthew Dilisio, MD, as the first recipient of the Robert F. Kepley, M.D. Orthopaedic Fellowship. The fellowship was made possible by a $1 million gift from Robert and Joyce Rice and family and is named in honor of Dr. Kepley, an orthopaedic surgeon at the Crystal Clinic Orthopaedic Center.

The fellowship was created to provide ongoing support to enhance the medical education of Summa Health System orthopaedic residents and to support sound research initiatives investigating bone and joint problems. The selection of the fellow is based on the resident’s character, emerging clinical skills and interest in combining medical practice with compassionate patient care.

A fourth year Summa Health System orthopaedic resident and graduate of St. Louis University, Dr. Dilisio has interest in shoulder and elbow surgery, sports medicine and cartilage/polymer tissue engineering specialties.

With a mission to integrate clinical responsibility and research into daily practice, Dr. Dilisio will embark on a basic science research project as part of his fellowship throughout the next 12 to 18 months. He will work, in collaboration with Scott Weiner, MD, orthopaedic surgeon at Summa Health System; Walter Horton Jr., Ph.D. of Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED); and Judit Puskas, Ph.D. of the University of Akron, on advancing tissue engineering and creating a revolutionary cartilage implant for joints.

“There’s no current implant for this [joints], and it’s exciting to work with a biologist and polymer scientist with their expertise to design it,” Dr. Dilisio explained. His project, titled “Rubber City Arbo Cartilage,” has a special meaning as well, he said.

“The project is to design the first true cartilage implant derived from rubber development in Akron with tissue engineering technology. It’s a home-grown collaboration and I’m very excited to be working on it.”

A strong research program allows Summa to provide quality orthopaedic care for the community, Dr. Weiner said.

“Gifts like the Rice’s endowment go a long way to provide quality research for our department. Other opportunities are available through the Summa Foundation for those interested in helping to serve patients and the community.”

Summa Health System is renowned for innovation and excellence in orthopaedics. In 2009, the Crystal Clinic Orthopaedic Center, a partnership between Summa Health System and the Crystal Clinic, began operations, bringing together the talent and resources of two nationally-recognized orthopaedics programs specializing in the evaluation and treatment of conditions affecting the musculoskeletal system.

About Summa Health System
Summa Health System is one of the largest integrated healthcare delivery systems in Ohio. Encompassing a network of hospitals, community health centers, a health plan, a physician-hospital organization, a multi-specialty physician organization, research and multiple foundations, Summa is nationally renowned for excellence in patient care and for exceptional approaches to healthcare delivery. Summa's clinical services are consistently recognized by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (Magnet® status), U.S. News and World Report, Thomson Reuters and The Leapfrog Group. Summa also is a founding partner of the Austen BioInnovation Institute in Akron. For more information, visit or find us on Facebook at and Twitter at

About Summa Foundation
The Summa Foundation is a nonprofit organization advancing transformational philanthropy, community understanding and goodwill for the programs and priorities of Summa Health System. Incorporating fund development, government relations, community benefit and diversity, the Foundation creates and implements innovative partnerships, health policy opportunities and funding strategies to support the health system’s education, research and patient care agenda. For more information, visit

Scott Weiner, MD, orthopaedic surgeon at Summa Health System; Matthew Dilisio, MD, Robert F. Kepley, M.D. Orthopaedic Fellowship recipient; Robert Rice; Joyce Rice; Steven Schmidt, Ph.D., Interim President and COO of the Summa Foundation and Vice-President of Clinical Research & Innovation at Summa Health System at the Summa Health System Orthopaedic Resident Graduation Dinner.