Dr. LiVolsi was born in New York City where she spent her formative years. She attended Columbia
University College of Physicians and Surgeons where she spent four years learning from an outstanding
faculty of physician scientists and superb clinicians. During her clinic years she had the opportunity
to work with Dr. Sidney Werner, Professor of Medicine and author of the most authoritive text on
disorders of the thyroid gland. At this time, she met Dr. Paul Wermer, another Professor of Medicine,
who had described families with multiple endocrine tumors. These experiences tweaked her interest in
endocrine diseases and especially in the thyroid gland.
Her interest in pathology was sparked by a remarkable pathology faculty in the second year pathology
course including Drs. Harry Ioachim and the late Dr. Katy Innanopoulos. Twice weekly review sessions
in surgical pathology during rotations in general surgery increased her affection for the specialty. She
pursued elective months in surgical pathology in her fourth year of medical school and decided on
surgical pathology as a career.
Having made the decision to pursue residency training in pathology, she stayed on at Columbia and studied
in the Department headed by Dr. Donald West King. Autopsy rotations were guided by the late Dr.
Sigmund Wilens and then surgical pathology was taught by excellent diagnosticians such as Drs. Raffaele
Lattes, Nathan Lane, Marianne Wolfe and Karl H. Perzin. During her training she worked closely with Dr.
Carl Feind, a talented and remarkable thyroid and parathyroid surgeon who became a role model for a
surgeon who understood surgical pathology and its importance (Dr.Feind had rotated through surgical
pathology for 18 months during his training). Early in Dr. LiVolsiís career, she was nominated for
membership in the American Thyroid Association by Dr. Feind and this has become an essential part of her
career. She pursued translational research on C cells in the thyroid in the laboratory of the late Dr.
Paul LoGerfo where she learned all about immunohistochemistry.
After her residency and fellowship training at Columbia, Dr. LiVolsi became assistant professor of
pathology at Yale University. Another thyroid surgeon became a colleague and collaborator; Dr. Mark
Hayes had treated numerous members of a large multiple endocrine neoplasia IIA syndrome (MEN II A)
family. During the early years of her academic career, Dr. LiVolsi attended USCAP meeting and was
stimulated by the members of the Academy and its programs.
Nine years at Yale were followed by a move to the University of Pennsylvania as head of Surgical
Pathology. During these years, she participated in activities of the Academy, including teaching short
courses, and codirecting the 1992 Long Course on thyroid and parathyroid with Dr. Ronald DeLellis. Her
service to the Academy included also membership on the Education Committee, the Council and Executive
Committee; these positions included Presidency of the USCAP in 2004. For her service to the Academy she
received the Mostofi award in 2001.
Other positions she has held in the service of pathology include the Presidency of various societies:
the Arthur Purdy Stout Society of Surgical Pathologists, the Association of Directors of Anatomic and
Surgical Pathology, the Endocrine Pathology Society and the local Pathology Society of Philadelphia. She
serves on numerous editorial boards of journals in the fields of pathology (including Modern Pathology
and Laboratory Investigation) and endocrinology.
She has published almost 320 papers, numerous chapters and several books including Surgical Pathology of
the Thyroid and Endocrine Pathology (coedited with Dr. Sylvia Asa).
Since 1998, Dr. LiVolsi has served on the International Pathology Panel (and currently she is its chair)
which reviews thyroid tumors which have developed in the countries of the former Soviet Union affected by
the nuclear accident at Chernobyl. In 2006, on the anniversary of the disaster, Dr. LiVolsi presented
the pathologic aspects of these thyroid lesions at a special commemorative meeting at the United Nations
in New York City.
In addition to diagnostic surgical pathology (and she also has interests in head and neck pathology, and
gynecological pathology) Dr. LiVolsi has been the Principal Investigator of the Eastern Division of the
Cooperative Human Tissue Network (CHTN) an NCI sponsored resource for the collection of human
biomaterials for research. During the twenty years of this part of her career, she has participated in
the discussions and panels regarding issues of informed consent and privacy concerns when using human
tissues for research.
Another part of her career which is an intergral component of her professional life is teaching and
training young pathologists: medical students, residents and fellows. Dr. LiVolsi has mentored
numerous young pathologists and has influenced many with her passion for diagnosis and superb patient
care. Many of her trainees are currently pursuing successful academic careers in prestigious medical
centers throughout the country. She has also influenced academic pathologists internationally with
trainees from Europe and Asia.
Although diagnostic pathology occupies a large part of her life, Dr. LiVolsi has other interests
including music (she loves Italian opera and counts as one of the highlights of her life, having met
Luciano Pavarotti, our generationís best tenor) and singing in her parish choir. She loves to travel, do
needlepoint and serve as guardian to two felines, Rigel and Pumpkin.