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James Grand

Michele was a big reason why I wanted to join SDOS and UMD. She was the first person I met when I came for the job interview in 2014, and I remember talking with her at dinner that night about her time here, the program, etc. and thinking "Wow, I have never met another person in our field like this!" Her enthusiasm, passion, and interest in learning about everything was so immediately contagious that it got me genuinely excited about the possibility of being part of this group. And then when she referred to herself and the rest of SDOS as "mad scientists who love other mad scientists," there was no going back for me. Seeing all the accomplishments Michele has earned over the past six years I've been here (not to mention all those that came before!) is both amazing and inspiring. But I'll also never forget all the little things that made it so much fun to be her colleague. I will always remember Gelf giving me a hard time for my office not being messy enough and watching Seinfeld anytime I was working at my computer with my headphones on. I will always remember Michele agreeing to help me out with a mentoring event at SIOP, but only if I introduced her as "The Gelf" to everyone in attendance. I will always remember Gelf cheerfully shouting "Hanges! How ya doin Hanges!?" down our hallway everytime she came into the office. I will always remember being offered bagels, sandwiches, sushi, cake, and whatever other extra food Gelf had laying around her office. There are too many of those sorts of things to write out here, but I feel so lucky to have had a colleague and mentor as encouraging and supportive as Michele -- and I will definitely never forget that!

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