Campus News

April 12, 2010

Campaign Emory

Boost for doctors and their education

New York philanthropist Margaretta “Retta” Taylor has given $5 million to Emory School of Medicine to support excellence in primary care and medical education.

“These remarkable gifts from Ms. Taylor show her passionate commitment to the high quality of patient care and medical education that Emory provides,” says President Jim Wagner. “Her investment is a generous vote of confidence in Emory’s work, and it will have a significant, ongoing impact on the School of Medicine.”

One-fifth of the gift will create an endowment, the Margaretta Taylor Clinician Fund in Primary Care, to support an outstanding clinician who provides the highest-quality and most compassionate patient care. The first Taylor Clinician will be Sally A. West, senior associate in general internal medicine at The Emory Clinic. West is known as a skilled diagnostician, a physician who combines personal instinct and experience with a thorough examination of clinical evidence, and a caring, thoughtful provider.

The remaining $4 million will be used to name the lobby of the James B. Williams Medical Education Building, helping support strategic priorities such as student scholarships, recruitment of clinicians and retention packages for outstanding faculty.

Opened in fall 2008, the Williams Building gave Emory’s medical school its first on-campus home, made possible the implementation of an innovative new curriculum and enabled a 15 percent increase in enrollment, helping alleviate the U.S. physician shortage.

Taylor decided to invest in Emory School of Medicine because of its “great achievements and unlimited potential” in education, patient care and research, she says.

Dean Thomas J. Lawley says, “Our medical faculty join me in thanking Ms. Taylor. Her gift supports our efforts to meet urgent needs in our society — helping us relieve financial burdens of the next generation of doctors while attracting and retaining the most knowledgeable and compassionate faculty to train them.”

Faculty members and administrators are committed to ensuring that Emory’s medical training yields highly capable, caring physicians. Introduced in 2007, the new curriculum enables students to grow not just in knowledge but also in compassion, curiosity, and commitment — and to use these traits wisely in serving their profession and communities.

In research, Emory School of Medicine scientists received more than $380 million for sponsored studies in 2009. With more than $265 million in funding from the National Institutes of Health, the School of Medicine was ranked 15th among schools of medicine nationally.

Taylor’s gift is part of Campaign Emory, a $1.6 billion fundraising endeavor that combines private support and the University’s people, places and programs to make a powerful contribution to the world.

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