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Caring for a friend in need

Fri Jul 17, 2020

Reba Putorti, Coordinator of Greek Life and Student Leadership in the Office of Student Development, spent her summer break saving a mentor’s life.

Reba completed her undergraduate and graduate degrees at Hofstra University in New York, where she got to know Vice President for Student Affairs Houston Dougharty. “He was just such an excellent role model and everything I aspire to be in my career: a voice and a friend for students,” she recalled.

In the fall of 2018 she learned that Dougharty needed a kidney transplant. Reba put her name on a prospective donor list, and within a few months got the call to be evaluated. An exhaustive sequence of tests followed during which she was confirmed as a match, but at the same time Dougharty’s own kidney functions had improved.

By this summer, however, he needed the surgery, and Reba was happy to step up.

“There was never a question in my mind that this was something I wanted to do,” she recalled. “I don’t think it's very often that you know people in life who need transplants, so when you’re young and healthy and a match, it’s a no brainer. My parents raised me to be caring and generous, so I just try to live the values they instilled in me.”

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