News & Features
In the News
Week of 15 October 1999
Vol. III, No. 10
Accolades for alumni achievers
The highest honor conferred on Boston University alumni
will be presented at the Homecoming and Family Weekend
Welcome Breakfast and Alumni Awards Ceremony on Saturday,
October 16, at 9:30 a.m. at Metcalf Hall in the George
Sherman Union. This year's award recipients are:
Merwyn Bagan (MED'62, SPH'95)
Merwyn Bagan earned a B.A. at Dartmouth College
and an M.D. at the BU School of Medicine and trained in
neurological surgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital. After
retiring from neurosurgical practice in 1993, he earned an
M.P.H. at the BU School of Public Health.
He cofounded Healthsource New Hampshire and
Healthsource, Inc., state and national health maintenance
organizations, respectively, in 1985. He was president and
chairman of Healthsource New Hampshire from 1985 to 1993 and
chairman of Healthsource, Inc., from 1985 to 1997, when it
was bought by CIGNA.
Since 1995, Bagan has lived in Nepal as a volunteer at
the Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital, where he has
helped establish neurosurgery, a neuro ward, and a spinal
unit. He has been instrumental in obtaining more than $1
million in medical equipment for the hospital. He was named
visiting professor at the Tribhuvan University Institute of
Medicine's department of surgery in 1997.
Bagan is a former president of the American Association
of Neurological Surgeons and of the New Hampshire Medical
Society. He has received the Distinguished Service Award
from the Congress of Neurological Surgeons, the Ether Prize
from Boston City Hospital, and the Distinguished Alumnus
Award from the BU School of Medicine, where he serves on the
Board of Visitors.
He and his wife, Carol, live in Nepal. Karin, one of
their three children, graduated from the College of
Communication in 1989.
Edward W. Harbert III (COM'77)
While at Boston University, Ted Harbert was a
producer in the news department of WHDH radio. He graduated
magna cum laude and that summer began 20 years with ABC
Entertainment. Rising through a variety of programming
positions, he became vice president for program planning and
scheduling in 1983, and successively vice president for
motion pictures, vice president for motion pictures and
scheduling, vice president for prime time, and in 1989,
executive vice president. In January 1993 he was named
president, responsible for all prime time and late-night
entertainment programming, and in 1996 was named chairman.
He joined DreamWorks SKG in February 1997, signing an
exclusive two-and-a-half-year contract to develop and
produce new television shows. In August of this year, he was
named president of NBC Studios.
Harbert is a member of the executive committee and the
board of governors of the Academy of Television Arts and
Sciences and of the board of governors of the Environmental
Media Association, and is a past president of the Hollywood
Radio and Television Society. He is also on the dean's
advisory board of UCLA's Center for Communications Policy
and the board of directors of Friends of the L.A. Free
He received the College of Communication's Distinguished
Communicator Award in 1989 and Distinguished Alumnus Award
He and his wife, Susan, and their children live in Los
Frederick Kobrick (CAS'69)
Fred Kobrick graduated first in his class in
economics at the College of Arts and Sciences, and two years
later, first in his class in investment management at the
Harvard Business School. He spent 14 years at Wellington
Management Company as a securities analyst and portfolio
manager, and in 1985 he joined State Street Research, where
he was senior vice president and a member of the Equity
Investment Committee. He managed three equity mutual funds,
a pooled pension vehicle, and MetLife's aggressive equity
annuity fund, with total assets of more than $4 billion. In
late 1997 he left State Street to start Kobrick Funds, which
manages three mutual funds, and Kobrick Capital, which
manages private money for high net worth individuals,
universities, and other organizations.
Before coming to BU, Kobrick served in the U.S. Navy,
where he was in charge of photography for Cruiser-Destroyer
He was elected to the Boston University Board of Trustees
at graduation and served until 1972, at the time the
youngest trustee in the University's history. He is a member
of the College of Arts and Sciences Collegium of
Kobrick lives in Sudbury, Mass., with his wife, Sherrill
(DGE'67, SED'69), and their two children.
Gitta Kurlat (SMG'63, LAW'65)
Gitta Kurlat transferred to Boston University
from George Washington University. She earned a B.S./ B.A.
at the School of Management and a J.D. cum laude at the
School of Law, where she was on the staff of the Law Review
for two years. She received an L.L.M. from Harvard
University in 1966.
Kurlat was an instructor and research assistant at
the School of Law during the year following her graduation
and then joined the Boston law firm Guterman, Horvitz, Rubin
and Rudman. She was a partner in the firm from 1971 to 1986.
She founded Kurlat Associates in 1987, specializing in
business, securities, and international corporate law, and
cofounded Kurlat Ventures, a venture capital company
focusing on high-technology industries.
In 1968 she cofounded Eikonix Corporation, which
specialized in digital imaging, and was director of the
corporation until it was sold to Eastman Kodak in 1985.
Kurlat has been active with the American Bar Association,
the Massachusetts Bar Association, and other professional
organizations. She has been a member of the Board of Bar
Overseers of Massachusetts, a director of the International
Coordinating Council, the Boston Municipal Research Bureau,
and the Advisory Board of the Coalition for Science and
Technology, and a trustee of the New England Medical Center.
She received the School of Management's Alumni Award for
Distinguished Service to the Profession in 1993 and is a
member of the SMG Dean's Advisory Council.
She and her husband, Saul, live in Cambridge, Mass.
Ida E. Lewis (DGE'54, COM'56)
After graduating from the College of
Communication, Ida Lewis was the financial writer for the
New York Amsterdam News from 1957 to 1960 and financial
editor for The New York Age from 1959 to 1961. She directed
research at the Small Investor's Real Estate Plan for two
years and lived in France from 1964 to 1969, writing for
Life, Le Figaro Litteraire, L'Express, the Washington Post,
the New York Times, and other periodicals. She also
interviewed African dignitaries in Paris for the BBC's
African Service. She returned to the United States as a
correspondent for Jeune Afrique, a newsmagazine based in
Paris. She was the first editor-in-chief of Essence
magazine, in 1971 and 1972, and then founded Encore:
American & Worldwide News. She was its publisher and
editor-in-chief for 10 years, the editor or publisher of
other small periodicals, and a member of Columbia
University's journalism faculty.
Lewis was a political media consultant and press
agent from 1984 to 1992; her clients included Ross Perot,
Abe Hirschfeld, and Adam Clayton Powell. She was a literary
agent from 1995 to 1998 and last year became the first woman
editor-in-chief of The New Crisis, the magazine of the
She speaks frequently at conferences, seminars, and
colleges. Lewis taught at the College of Communication in
the spring of 1999 and will do so again in the spring of
Among her honors are an award for excellence in
journalism from the Association for the Study of
Afro-American Life and History, the Woman of Distinction
Award from Kingsborough College of the City University of
New York, and the Distinguished Alumna Award from the
College of Communication.
Lewis lives in New York City.