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Appointments to Endowed Positions Announced in Urology, Pathology
Ouida Lenaine Westney, M.D., and Robert E. Brown, M.D., each have been named to endowed positions at The University of Texas Medical School at Houston.
Ouida Lenaine Westney, M.D.,
C.R. Bard Inc./Edward J. McGuire, M.D., Distinguished Chair in Urology
Westney, associate professor of surgery in the Division of Urology, was named to the C. R. Bard Inc./Edward J. McGuire, M.D., Distinguished Chair in Urology.
Westney, who is division director and residency program director, said being named to this endowed position carries a great deal of meaning and sentiment for her, as it bears the name of one of her mentors.
“Dr. McGuire was my residency and fellowship program director at the Medical School and continues to be my most valued mentor and close friend,” said Westney, who completed a fellowship in female urology, neurourology and pelvic reconstruction at the Medical School.
“His contribution to academic urology is unparalleled in the areas of incontinence and neurogenic voiding dysfunction,” she said. “I strive to emulate his example as an educator and advocate for resident and fellow education. Based on my long-term collaboration with him, I feel uniquely qualified to administer these resources in accordance with the wishes of the company, C. R. Bard, and Dr. McGuire.
“Additionally, I am very honored to be selected as the guardian of funds donated to the university as a tribute to his unique brilliance and vision.”
McGuire was a professor of surgery and director of the urology division at the Medical School during the 1990s. He is currently a professor of surgery in the section of urology at the University of Michigan. The distinguished chair in his honor was established in 1996 by various donors.
Founded in 1923, C. R. Bard Inc. develops, manufactures and markets medical technologies in the fields of vascular medicine, urology, oncology and surgery. Some of their products include hemodialysis catheters, angioplasty balloons and vascular patches. The company helped Frederick E. B. Foley, M.D., develop and market the first Foley catheter in the 1930s and developed the first arterial prosthesis by Michael E. DeBakey, M.D., in 1954.
Westney specializes in incontinence, neurourology and complex urinary tract and pelvic reconstruction. She hopes to use her endowment funds to support and mentor young researchers.
“These resources will enable me to support the development of the Division of Urology with a focus on expansion of our clinical and basic science research program. Creating the infrastructure to support the research endeavors of our junior faculty and residents will lay a foundation which will bring forth dividends in major contributions to our field,” she said.
Robert E. Brown, M.D.,
Harvey S. Rosenberg, M.D., Chair in Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Like Westney, Brown said he is pleased, not only to be awarded an endowed position, but honored as well because of the endowment’s namesake.
“It was a double honor to receive the appointment to the Harvey S. Rosenberg, M. D., Chair in Pathology and Laboratory Medicine,” Brown said. “Not only does it convey the academic distinction of an endowed position at a prestigious medical school, but also it is given in the name of one of the most, if not the most, distinguished pediatric pathologists of our time, Dr. Rosenberg. As a pediatric pathologist, I am both honored and humbled by the appointment and will do my best to live up to this position.”
Rosenberg was appointed professor emeritus in 2001 and has been on the faculty at the Medical School for more than 25 years. Various donors established the endowed chair in his honor in 1987.
Brown, professor and vice chair of the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, said he hopes the endowed funds will help advance research into morphoproteomics, which identifies the molecular circuitry of proteins within tumors to detect molecular targets amenable to specific intervention. The goal is to create “personalized medicine,” as Brown calls it, specific to an individual patient’s tumor.
“The endowment will enable me to pursue my goal of testing the concept of morphoproteomics at the largest medical complex in the world and applying it in a clinically scientific manner, in collaboration with my clinical colleagues, to individualized therapy for cancer patients.”
Research at the Edge
Funding this kind of cutting-edge research is a prime example of the importance of endowments, according to James T. Willerson, M.D., UT Health Science Center president.
“Often, state and federal funding falls short of fully supporting innovative research. Philanthropic support helps us bridge the gap. In turn, this privately supported research often gives us an edge when competing for grant funding,” Willerson said. “We are grateful to the generous friends who make our endowments possible. These important gifts not only serve as a legacy to the donor, but they also serve as infinite investments in the future of the health science center.”
Interim Medical School Dean, Jerry S. Wolinsky, M.D., added that the availability of endowments can be a deciding factor for educators and scientists when choosing a university in which to carry on their work.
“Faculty endowments are essential to the recruitment and retention of our top-notch educators, clinicians, and researchers,” Wolinsky said. “We rely on the generosity of our benefactors who wisely choose to fund these mentors of tomorrow’s physicians and scientists.”
An endowment establishes a permanent fund that the donor designates for a specific use (a chair or professorship, a lecture series, scholarships or special award). Income earned from the endowed fund supports the donor’s specified purpose, but the corpus is never used; thus, the endowment is held in perpetuity. Endowments may be named for the principal donor or named to honor a family member or revered faculty member. Endowed positions are approved by the UT System Board of Regents.
By Wendy K. Mohon, Institutional Advancement
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