Leonardo da Vinci regarded the foot as “a masterpiece of engineering and a work of art.” Georgeanne Goodrich Botek ’86 would probably agree. As medical director of the Diabetic Foot Program at the Cleveland Clinic, Botek is committed to assuring that patients who suffer from diabetes mellitus don’t lose a foot. If the disease is not properly treated, people are at risk for infection, which might require amputation. She oversees pathologies of the foot and ankle in people with diabetes. In addition, the podiatrist collaborates with Lerner Research Institute and Case Western Reserve University School of Dental Medicine on research related to diabetic foot ulcers, and is on the staff of the Orthopaedic & Rheumatologic Institute at the Clinic.
Botek was a year behind her husband, Fred Botek ’85, a Gilmour Trustee. Their three children, Daniel ’21, Jonathan ’17 and Matthew ’14, are students at the Academy. “Gilmour means family and home in many ways,” Botek says, noting that Campus Minister Father John Blazek ’58, C.S.C., married the couple.
“Gilmour has been valuable to me throughout my personal and professional lives since high school,” Botek says. It had an impact on her desire to make exercise and health and wellness an important aspect of her life. “Tennis in the fall with coach Barb Vaughn, basketball in the winter and softball or track in the spring made for a well-rounded high school experience,” she says. Gilmour instructors Kathy Kenny and Joy Gray influenced her choice to major in English Literature at Miami University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in 1990. Botek graduated from the Ohio College of Podiatric Medicine in 1994, completed her surgical residency two years later, and worked in private practice in Columbus until 1997, when she joined the Cleveland Clinic.
Those activities that are not work-related are centered around her children, whose interests range from sports to piano to chess. Jonathan is ranked among the top 12 chess players in the state in the Kindergarten through sixth grade division. Botek participates in spin classes at the gym and enjoys hiking with the family’s black lab, Brady, named for former University of Notre Dame football star and former Cleveland Browns quarterback Brady Quinn.
Living in Willoughby Hills, Botek finds that her path often crosses with other Gilmour alumni and their families – and even their parents, whom she treats professionally for foot problems. She sees former classmates Gino Zavarelli ’86 at their sons’ karate lessons and gets together with Gretchen (Corrigan) Mlinaric ’86 at sporting events and suppers. Botek states that her faith deepened and grew as a Gilmour student. Once a high school Eucharistic minister, she is now a Eucharist minister for shut-ins at St. Noel parish, where she is also on the Pastoral Council. “Keeping a balance in one’s life,” Botek says, “is important for lasting happiness.”