Happy 250th Anniversary MSNJ!

    Our gala was a success! If you were unable to join us, you can still help us celebrate our 250th anniversary. Click here to donate to MSNJ to help us continue to be the support and voice for New Jersey physicians.

    MSNJ is the oldest professional organization in the nation!

    MSNJ thanks the following for their generous financial support during our 250th Anniversary:

    Theodore J. Stahl, MD
    Fred M. Palace, MD
    Theodore F. Biesiadecki, MD
    Jerrold M. Feigenbaum, MD
    Lorenzo DeLosAngeles, MD
    Donald Harrop, MD
    Donald Praiss, MD
    Jamsheed Najmi, MD
    Elliot Coleman, MD
    Peter Semple, MD
    Frederick Gordon, MD
    Valentino Sica, MD
    Nahum Balotin, MD
    Marvin Richard Agran, MD

    Because of their generosity, we are able to further our mission to:

    Promote the betterment of the public health and the science and the art of medicine;
    Enlighten public opinion in regard to the problems of medicine; and
    Safeguard the rights of the practitioners of medicine

    Nearly 300 physicians, families, and friends attended the 250th Anniversary Gala on July 23 in New Brunswick, the date and site of the formation of the Medical Society of New Jersey. Among them were twenty fellows: the 195th President--Harry Carnes, MD, the 196th --Palma Formica, MD, 197th -- Paul Hirsch, MD, 199th-- Joseph Riggs, MD, 203d-- Louis Keeler, MD, 204th-- Anthony Caggiano, MD, 206th-- Gregory Sachs, MD, 207th-- Irving Ratner, MD, 208th-- Walter Kahn, MD, 210th-- Robert Rigolosi, MD, 211th--Mark Olesnicky, MD, 212th-- Manzoor Abidi, MD, 213th-- Eileen Moynihan, MD, 214th-- Charles Moss, MD, 217th-- Joseph Reichman, MD, 219th-- Niranjan Rao, MD, 220th-- Mary Campagnolo, MD, 221st-- Ruth Schulze, MD, 222d-- Paul Carniol, MD, and our current 224th President Joseph P. Costabile, MD.

    View the photos from the event!

    History of MSNJ | Successes Through The Years

    Congratulations to Dr. Costabile on becoming our 224th President

    Captain Joseph P. Costabile, MD of Marlton, New Jersey was recently installed as the 224th president of the Medical Society of New Jersey (MSNJ) at its annual meeting in May. He has served as a member of MSNJ’s Board of Trustees since 2009, and will assume the presidency from Steven Berkowitz, MD, PA, FACS, FAAOS, CIME.

    “Dr. Costabile is a dedicated and passionate leader with a deep understanding of the issues and the vision needed to enact real change both in our organization and the greater medical community,” said Larry Downs, CEO of MSNJ. “We are thrilled to welcome him as our new president, and are confident that he will bring innovative ideas and expert guidance to our organization.”

    A board-certified general and vascular surgeon, Dr. Costabile has extensive background in patient care, academic and professional leadership and health care advocacy. Since 1998, he has practiced with the Virtua Surgical Group, formerly the Surgical Group of South Jersey, Cherry Hill, with additional office locations in Marlton and Voorhees, New Jersey. Dr. Costabile has a long personal history with MSNJ. His father Douglas M. Costabile, MD served as the 198th president of the organization in 1990. In addition to his tenure on the Board of Trustees, Dr. Costabile has served as vice chairman of the MSNJ Council on Legislation since 2001.

    A graduate of the Pingry Preparatory School and Ohio Wesleyan University, Dr. Costabile received his medical degree from UMDNJ Rutgers Medical School in Camden. After five years of surgical residency, a trauma fellowship and a year of cardiac surgical training, Dr. Costabile began his vascular surgical fellowship. At that time, he also enlisted as a medical officer in the U.S. Navy Reserves.

    Dr. Costabile has dedicated many years of service to the U.S. Armed Forces. He is a captain in the U.S. Naval Reserves Medical Corps and was deployed twice to the Middle East in support of troops in Operation Iraqi Freedom. His first deployment was to an Expeditionary

    Medical Facility in Kuwait for a year in 2005, where he treated the combat wounded primarily from Iraq. His second deployment in 2008 was to Iraq for eight months. He has served as Head of Department of Surgery, U.S. Military Hospital, Kuwait and Chief of Professional Services, 1st Medical Battalion Alpha Company, Camp Al Taqaddum, Iraq. Today, Dr. Costabile continues to serve at the rank of captain in the 4th Medical Battalion under the 4th Marine Logistics Group, located at the Joint Base McGuire/Dix/Lakehurst.

    As an advocate for protecting and advancing the profession of medicine, Dr. Costabile’s involvement in organized medicine has increased over the years. Since 2007, he has served as a delegate of the American Medical Association. Additionally, he served as president of the Camden County Medical Society (2003-2004) and president of the Vascular Society of New Jersey (2009-2010). He continues to serve as the Vascular Society’s treasurer, a position he has held since 2003.

    In his inaugural speech as president, Dr. Costabile outlined three simple and straightforward goals for his one-year term:

    1. Focus on increasing membership and activism;
    2. The need for New Jersey physicians to “take back” their profession; and
    3. The need to do more to care for our military personnel.

    “We are doctors, physicians – much more than just providers,” he stated. “We are leaders looking after our patients’ healthcare and guardians of their very well being. If we are not the stewards of our own profession, who will do it for us?” 

    His passion and dedication to our nation’s armed forces rang through in his inaugural speech:

    “We need to do so more to take care of our military. These are people who have written a blank check to our great nation, with payment up to and including the sacrifice of their own lives. How many of us can say the same?” he continued. “We owe them a debt of gratitude – and from a professional standpoint, this can be accomplished by providing them with the quality, timely, compassionate medical care they have earned and deserve. We need make sure our veterans are aware of the programs and free care available to them, and all physicians should at a minimum accept Tricare, the military's health insurance. We must do all we can as physicians to make sure this population is not ignored.”

    Congratulations to our Award Recipients

    De Groote Award:

    A. Ralph Kristeller, MD, MS, FACP, CPE, FACPE

    Dr. Kristeller currently resides in East Hanover, New Jersey. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Norwich University, his Doctor of Medicine degree from The University of Pennsylvania, and his Master of Science degree from New York University.

    For 8 years, Dr. Kristeller was a Medical Officer in the United States Air Force. Then, for 27 years, he maintained a solo practices in Internal Medicine. While in private practice, he became Chief of Medicine at Overlook Hospital, Summit, New Jersey. Overlook was an affiliate of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University where Dr. Kristeller held an appointment as Assistant Professor of Medicine. He also was the Medical Director of a Manor Care Nursing Home in Mountainside, New Jersey.

    From 1990 to 1999, Dr. Kristeller was Vice President of Medical Affairs at Christ Hospital in Jersey City, NJ and then Director of Medical Affairs at Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank, NJ.

    Dr. Kristeller was a Delegate in the House of Delegates of the American Medical Association from 1990 to 2004. Because of term limits, he could no longer continue to serve as a Delegate. However, he continued to participate in AMA meetings for 30 years including the Annual Meeting in 2016.

    He was a member of the Quality Subcommittee of the Licensure Standards of the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services. He has been a member of the Board of Trustees of the Medical Society of New Jersey and a Director of the Alumni Association of The University of Pennsylvania as well as a member of the PAAD Advisory Committee of the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services. From 1997 to 2000, he was a member of the Associates and Medical Students Subcommittee of the American College of Physicians.

    Dr. Kristeller completed training in the Hospital Accreditation Program at the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations in March of 1999. In September of 1999, he became a Certified Physician Executive of the American College of Physician Executives, and in October of 2000, Dr. Kristeller advanced to Fellowship in the American College of Physician Executives. At the annual meeting of the New Jersey Chapter of the American College of Physicians in February 2002, Dr. Kristeller was the recipient of the Chapter’s annual Laureate Award. In 2003, 2004 and again in 2005, he was included in the Guide to America’s Top Physicians of the Consumers’ Research Council of America. Dr. Kristeller was appointed Consultant, part-time, to the New Jersey Department of Labor in 2007. This is a Federal appointment.

    In 1983, Dr. Kristeller received the Award of Merit from the University of Pennsylvania and in 2005 received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from Norwich University. Both are the highest honor bestowed by the respective Alumni Societies. For a number of years, Dr. Kristeller was the sole care-giver for this beloved wife, Lena, who died from Ovarian Cancer in 2011.

    In 2014, Dr. Kristeller was recertified in Medical Quality by the American College of Medical Quality.

    Currently, Dr. Kristeller continues to participate regularly in a number of professional meetings and whenever possible participates in the “Free Clinic” supervised by Drs. John and Alieta Eck.

    Lifetime Achievement Award:

    Bernard Toro-Echague, MD

    Dr. Toro attended medical school at the Free University of Brussels, where he graduated in 1983.  He went on to an internal residence at Muhlenberg Medical Center in Plainfield, New Jersey where he also served as Chief Resident. 

    He went on to establish a medical practice in 1986 in Plainfield and Cranford, NJ.  His practice was one of the first practices in the area that adopted an electronic medical record. 

    He received his Internal Medicine Board Certification in 1997.

    Dr. Toro became a member of the Medical Society of New Jersey in 1983 and has served on the Committee on Medical Education continuously since 1985, serving as Vice-Chair from 1992-1996, Chair from 1996-2000, and serves again as Chair since 2015.

    He served as President of the Union County Medical Society for the period of 2011-2012.

    He served as Medical Director for Quality Management at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Rahway and is presently a member of the Ethics Committees at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Rahway and also at John F. Kennedy Medical Center in Edison, NJ. 

    Dr. Toro is active in medical education and gives frequent lectures for physicians and for the public at large at a variety of venues.

    When not treating patients, his hobbies include photography, gardening and Kayaking.


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