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Photo: Kathleen Dooher

Doers’ Profiles


HOME: Winchester, Massachusetts

OCCUPATION: Owner and president of Varick Enterprises, a company that he, his brother, and his father founded in 1978 to import processing and packaging equipment for the confectionery and snack food industries

SWEETEST VICTORIES: Inducted into the Candy Hall of Fame, the industry’s highest honor, and received the National Confectioners Association Supplier of the Year Award for 2011.

FLUENT IN: Bergamasco. “The first company I partnered with was in northern Italy, and the owner encouraged me in my attempts to learn Italian. On business trips I stayed with him and his wife at their home, immersed in a new language and culture. Only later did I realize that the man had tutored me in a dialect that is specific to his little town. I’d visit other parts of Italy, and people would say, ‘Oh, you sound like you come from Bergamo!’ ”

HIS PROFESSION’S SOFT, CHEWY CENTER: The camaraderie. “I’ve even seen equipment loaned between competitors.”

BEST DECISION: “Taking our autistic daughter out of the local public school.” He and his wife opted to enroll her in the Riverview School, which specializes in helping students like her. “It was among the most difficult moves we've made, but she's now in a place of miracles.”

CHOKED UP BY: Watching his seventeen-year-old son, a cross-country team captain, deliver an end-of-season banquet speech about the special synergy he and his teammates share.

DARK OBSESSION: The RMS Titanic. Next year, for the hundredth anniversary of its ill-fated voyage, “my wife and I are booked on a ship that will travel the same route, leaving out of Southampton, England, and making ports of call at Cherbourg, France, and Cobh, Ireland, then known as Queenstown. A vigil will be held above the wreck of the Titanic at the exact time that, a century earlier, it sank.”

DEFINING TRAITS: Energy, optimism, curiosity—and unsinkability.

INDULGES HIS OWN SWEET TOOTH WITH: Lindt Alpine Milk Chocolate, Atomic Fire Balls, and Hi-Chew, a kind of Japanese taffy that chews like gum but dissolves like candy.

HIS EDUCATION: B.S., Tufts (geology)


Photo: Chris Hartlove


CHILDHOOD HOME: Tehran, Iran. “I left at age seventeen, when my parents sent me to Boston on a one-way ticket so I could finish high school in a safer environment and have a greater chance of success in life.”

CURRENT RESIDENCE: Bethesda, Maryland

PROFESSION: Interventional pain management specialist. Practicing surgeon at hospitals and medical centers throughout greater Washington, D.C.; staff member at Bethesda’s Suburban Hospital. “My expertise is in minimally invasive therapies for spine pain originating from the neck and back—but I treat people with all types of pain.”

PRESSING RESPONSIBILITIES: President and medical director, Advanced Pain Medicine Institute; director of pain management services, Dimensions Healthcare System; founder and CEO of Truceuticals LLC, the parent company for Noxicare natural pain relief cream

HIS MOTIVATION: “My father was a hospital pharmacist in Tehran, and he would often be frustrated at the side effects patients experienced because of the pain relief drugs they took. When I became a doctor, I saw the same thing myself, and resolved to do something.”

WHAT HE DID: Created Noxicare natural pain relief cream, which “contains centuries-old ingredients such as ginger and willow bark that have been proven to relieve pain without serious side effects.”

ENCOURAGED BY: The range of interventional pain treatments becoming available.

CHALLENGED BY: Lack of awareness about interventional pain management. “Even health-care providers often don’t know that interventional pain management specialists exist. Or they believe pain management means narcotics.”

DEFINING TRAITS: Dynamism, unremitting compassion, and an innovative mindset. Devoted to his patients; refuses to be limited by conventional ideas about how to help them.

FAVORITE TV SHOW: Seinfeld. “What can I say? It’s a bit old school, but still very funny.”

FAVORITE MOVIE: Casablanca. “Because I am an incurable romantic.”

HIS EDUCATION: B.S., Tufts (biology); M.D., Tufts School of Medicine

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