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It's more rewarding to watch money change the world than to watch it accumulate.
—Gloria Steinem

A Philanthropic Community

By Barbra Alan

Nearly every fund-raising campaign has a "quiet" phase, and the Transforming Medicine Campaign for Dartmouth Medical School and Dartmouth- Hitchcock Medical Center is no exception. But it was far from quiet. Between July 1, 2002, when the campaign began counting gifts, and May 21, 2005, when it entered its public phase, nearly $91 million was raised toward the goal of $250 million by 2009.

As Alfred Griggs, chair of both the DHMC and Mary Hitchcock Memorial Hospital Boards of Trustees observed at the May 21 campaign launch, these funds "came from the community that has nurtured and supported these institutions since their infancy."

Indeed, this community—which comprises dedicated friends, grateful patients, and loyal alumni—has nurtured and supported medicine at Dartmouth for over two centuries. And today, this philanthropic community is empowering DMS and DHMC to transform medicine by improving health and the delivery of health care locally and in the region, the country, and the world.

DMS was built on a foundation of philanthropy—quite literally. Not only did DMS's founder, Dr. Nathan Smith, donate the land for the school's "New Medical House," completed in 1811, but he also funded part of its construction.The building was Smith's most tangible legacy to DMS and remained the heart of the Medical School for more than 150 years.

All across the DMS campus are buildings and spaces named for members of DMS's philanthropic community. For example, the Chilcott Auditorium was named in honor of the late James (DC '20) and Ruth Chilcott, who contributed enormously to the Medical School's growth and success over the years by endowing a professorship, student scholarships, and laboratory space.


DMS founder Nathan Smith was the institution's first philanthropist, giving the land on which the School's first building sat.

And the James D.Vail, Jr., Medical Sciences Building was one of several gifts from the Vail and McGaw families, a veritable philanthropic dynasty at DMS that has created professorships, fellowships, and a student support fund.

Philanthropy also laid the foundation of Mary Hitchcock Memorial Hospital, which opened in 1893. Hiram Hitchcock, a wealthy hotelier and Dartmouth Trustee, funded the hospital's construction as a memorial to his late wife, Mary Maynard Hitchcock.

Among the donors who have had a key role in DHMC's growth are Robert (DC '25) and Naomi Borwell; their $7.5- million gift helped create the Borwell Research Building, which opened in 1993 and contains basic-science labs.

Adjacent to Borwell is the Barbara E. Rubin Building, home to Norris Cotton Cancer Center's outpatient chemotherapy and radiation services; clinical research; cancer epidemiology, prevention, and control programs; oncology groups;

and administrative offices.The building was named in memory of Vermont business leader and philanthropist Barbara Rubin, who succumbed to cancer in 1989. She had been a patient of Dr.O. Ross McIntyre, former director of the Cancer Center.

Today, DHMC continues to flourish with support from friends like Dean LeBaron, whose recent $5-million gift will establish LeBaron Commons. Named in memory of LeBaron's father, Dr. Francis E. LeBaron,D.O., M.D., it will connect the Borwell Research Building to future research facilities, fostering communication and collaboration among members of the Dartmouth medical community.

Funding the Dartmouth medical enterprise's physical expansion is just one way in which the philanthropic community has helped support a leading academic medical center.

Jennifer and Peter Brock's strong commitment to the DMS Department of Genetics is helping the department to attract some of the world's leading geneticists and to conduct research that has profound implications for understanding heart disease, cancer, and other life-threatening illnesses.

This community—which comprises dedicated friends, patients, and loyal alumni—has nurtured and supported these institutions for over two centuries.

The Byrne Foundation funded the Regional Palliative Care Initiative, which led to the launch of DHMC's Palliative Medicine Program. Ongoing support from the foundation has strengthened the program, positioning it as a leader in end-of-life care.

Recently, an anonymous commitment of $1 million was made to establish an

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Barbra Alan is assistant director of development communications for the Medical School and Medical Center.

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