Giving back for getting to achieve a dream


Brooklyn, NY, native Ralph Levy, D.O.’60, had never been to the Midwest before he arrived at DMU, then the Des Moines Still College of Osteopathy and Surgery. After he graduated, he returned east to an internship at Philadelphia’s Metropolitan Hospital followed by a distinguished career in internal medicine in Huntington, NY. Yet he’s never forgotten what he gained at DMU.

“The University allowed me to fulfill a lifelong dream of becoming a physician,” he says. “I was always thankful, and I wanted to help others do the same.”

That began when he was a student, receiving a University award given to the senior who’d assisted members of the freshman class the most during the past year. Active in the medical profession, he served on the DMU Board of Trustees and Alumni Association Board. He’s supported the University financially as well. And on Jan. 10, 2015, he and his loving companion, Dorothy Schwartz, hosted a dinner for DMU alumni and University leaders in their Delray Beach, FL, home. They’re shown in the photo with DMU President Angela Walker Franklin, Ph.D., and their Founders Society award.

“Six years ago, we started getting together with some DMU classmates once a year, so this was an extension of that,” he says. He hopes more alumni will emulate him in this.

Retired in 2007, Dr. Levy does everything except sit around. He’s an award-winning photographer who plays tennis, goes fishing, gives talks about Civil War topics, travels and participates in local theater and current events clubs. The contrast of his current schedule with his DMU days is another reason he appreciates his alma mater.

“It was a wonderful school and the people were very friendly, but there was nothing to do in Des Moines at the time but study,” he chuckles. “There were no distractions.”

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