President William L. Henrich, M.D., MACP

A message from the president

William L. Henrich, M.D., MACP President Professor of Medicine UT Health Science Center San Antonio

Navigating toward success

Public education and institutions of higher education throughout the nation have taken a hit. In San Antonio, we have certainly felt the effects of the unrelenting recession. With the completion of the Texas Legislative Special Session this summer, the reduction in state funds for our UT Health Science Center will be $24.6 million per year for the next two years.

Yet, because of the patience and resolve of our faculty and staff – and the leadership and generosity of our donors and supporters – the Health Science Center’s progress remains steady and on an upward trajectory. This spirited dedication is carrying us forward to continue our critical missions of education, healing, discovery and community service.

On the cover of our Mission fall issue is Kristen Plastino, M.D., from our School of Medicine’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology. She not only represents our faculty, who shape the lives of students and residents every day, but also our patients, whose lives are touched by the technology our doctors develop. Kristen recounts the day she fought for her life and how technology, developed right here at the Health Science Center, saved her. We are so thankful Kristen is here today to continue her calling. Her story is one of courage and inspiration and reminds us of the critical importance of our work.

In this issue we also recognize our champions and celebrate one of the university’s biggest milestones – the South Texas Research Facility (STRF) set to open this fall. This impressive new building symbolizes the hard work of many during these most difficult economic times.

At the new STRF, the Health Science Center’s tradition of excellence in translational science will continue and thrive. Research will evolve into biomedical devices and therapies that our physicians can use to benefit patients. That’s translational science in action – and the key to making lives better.

In addition, the STRF will fuel the city’s economy by creating new jobs and attracting new funding that will enable us to recruit additional world-renowned faculty to continue our tradition of lifesaving research. Our Health Science Center remains the chief catalyst for San Antonio’s $24.5 billion biosciences and health care industry, and we intend to continue and expand that role.

With state and federal funding more scarce than ever before, we will undoubtedly face many new challenges on our climb toward becoming one of the country’s foremost academic health science centers. Thankfully, our efforts are bolstered by special friends and donors who have joined us on our journey. Many of them are highlighted in this issue including Bernard and Audre Rapoport, Ruth McLean Bowman Bowers and the Ewing Halsell Foundation.

There is no doubt that adversity is life’s greatest teacher. During these austere economic times, we have learned a great deal and, with your support, we have navigated through the storms. Thank you for joining us as we continue tosail toward success.


William L. Henrich, M.D., MACP
Professor of Medicine
UT Health Science Center at San Antonio

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