Dr. Joseph Brocato Ph.D., age 53, of Kalamazoo, MI beloved son, brother, uncle, friend and colleague, passed away peacefully on September 22, 2016. Born on February 2, 1963 in Kalamazoo, Michigan to Susan and Gene Brocato, Joe was known for his overwhelming generosity, compassion for others, strong Catholic faith, and love for his family. He bravely faced pancreatic cancer surrounded by the love and companionship of family and many friends. Joe was the ultimate connector, bringing people together, working hard, and enjoying life to the fullest. He was a tremendous Spartan football fan. After he moved to Minneapolis ten years ago, he flew to East Lansing for every home game. Joe had many treasured friends and work colleagues, in Minneapolis, in Michigan, and all over the world. He loved to travel and sought out new experiences and locations. His zest for life included weekly tennis, and singles and doubles competitions using his powerful serve and volley techniques. Since 2006, Joe served at the University of Minnesota medical school, where he was Director of Medical Education and Faculty Development and Assistant Professor in the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health. Joe was responsible for the medical residency programs, curriculum development, and reaccreditation oversight, and was an exemplary mentor and collaborator on many projects and committees. While there, Joe received a number of faculty and service awards, presented at many conferences, and contributed to a number of publications. Prior to his appointment at the University of Minnesota, Joe held positions at Wayne State University's medical school as a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Family Medicine and Michigan State University in the College of Human Medicine and the College of Osteopathic Medicine, and as an instructor in the College of Education. Joe was dedicated to the life of the mind and was the embodiment of lifelong education. He completed his undergraduate studies in 1985 at Western Michigan University with the B.B.A. in Business Administration with double majors in Management and Marketing. In 1990 he finished the Master of Public Administration at Western Michigan. His Ph.D. was granted in 2000 by Michigan State University's College of Education. In 2014, he attended the prestigious Harvard-Macy Institute fellowship program in Leading Innovations in Healthcare and Education. Despite a lifetime of physical adversity, Joe overcame a number of challenges to live a life that was extremely fulfilling, demanding, and joyful. His smile and laughter were contagious and he continuously brought people together, joining one circle of friends with another. He lived his life of faith at the Basilica of St. Mary in Minneapolis as a eucharistic minister and also at St. John Church and Student Center in East Lansing, Michigan. Joe cherished his time with his family. Joe is survived by his parents, Gene and Sue Brocato, his sister Catherine (Ross) Dristy and nieces Kristina Dristy and Katie Dristy (Steve) Williams, brother-in-law William Castleberry and nephews Joseph and James Castleberry. He was preceded in death by his dearly loved sister Sally (Brocato) Castleberry in 2013. He will be sadly missed by so many. Joe chose to spend his last days at Rose Arbor Hospice in Kalamazoo. Many thanks to the staff for the care and comfort they provided him, as well as his caregivers from Home Watch. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on October 22 at the Basilica of St. Mary, 88 N. 17th St., Minneapolis. Visitation will be at 10:30 a.m., mass at 11:30 a.m. Another Mass of Christian Burial will take place on November 5, at St. John Church and Student Center, 327 M.A.C. Ave, East Lansing, Michigan, with visitation at 10:00 a.m., and mass at 11:00 a.m. Contributions may be made to to The Basilica Landmark, P.O. Box 50070, Minneapolis, MN 55405, or also to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network https://www.pancan.org in memory of Joseph Brocato.