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Transforming Medicine Campaign goes public

The mood was celebratory. The sun was shining. The news was great. On Saturday, May 21, Dartmouth Medical School and Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center announced to the world that they were launching a $250- million campaign—the largest in their history—that aims to transform the way medicine is delivered both in their own backyard and around the world.

Endowment: The appropriately named Transforming Medicine Campaign will raise funds to increase endowment for faculty support and program development; to advance research, academic, and clinical initiatives; and to build new facilities.

"Together we will transform not just medicine, but lives, here in the Upper Valley, in the regions of New Hampshire and Vermont, and throughout our country and our world," said Alfred Griggs, chair of both the DHMC and Mary Hitchcock Hospital Boards, in officially launching the campaign.

The previous record for a DMS or DHMC campaign was $95 million, raised as part of the Dartmouth College Will to Excel campaign, which ended in 1996. Although Transforming Medicine has just gone public, it's been accepting advance gifts since July 1, 2002—and as of the launch, nearly $91 million had already been committed toward the $250-million goal.

The Transforming Medicine Campaign—which will run through 2009—is part of a $1.3- billion Dartmouth College cappaign that was launched in November of 2004.

"The College and the Medical School have developed common values and a shared commitment to integrative education that builds bridges between the faculties of medicine, arts and sciences, engineering, and business at the College, and all the clinical enterprises of DHMC," said Dartmouth President James Wright at the DMSDHMC launch. "This campaign is also one of the keys to the continuing preeminence of the overall Dartmouth experience." Components of the $250- million goal include:

• $85 million for support of faculty, primarily through the establishment of endowed chairs for senior faculty and endowments for junior faculty development. Scholarships for DMS students are also being sought.

• $98 million for key clinical and research programs, most notably within Norris Cotton Cancer Center, the Children's Hospital at Dartmouth, and the Center for the Evaluative Clinical Sciences, as well as research in areas such as neuroscience, cardiovascular research, immunology and infectious diseases, orthopaedics, and genetics.

• $67 million for new research facilities at DHMC, including a Translational Research Building and a Center for the Evaluative Clinical Sciences building; renovations to the Vail and Remsen research buildings on DMS's Hanover campus; and a $2-million contribution to the new Norris Cotton Cancer Center- North in St. Johnsbury, Vt.

Lead gift commitments made during the quiet phase of the campaign included $5 million from Dean LeBaron to build a commons to connect Borwell Research Building to future research facilities; $5 million from Jennifer and Peter Brock for the genetics department; $5 million from the Theodora B. Betz Foundation to study brain tumors at Norris Cotton Cancer Center; $3 million from Johnson & Johnson for a psychiatry department project to help people with severe mental illness gain independence by obtaining community- based employment; and $2 million for scholarships from Dr. Norman Payson, a 1973 graduate of DMS.

Difference: Payson, former CEO of Oxford Health Plans as well as a DMS Overseer, also spoke at the launch. "Today," he said, "in heath-care policy, practice, medical education, patient empowerment, understanding of disease, advances in diagnosis and treatment, this medical center and medical school are making a difference."

"What we export from the Upper Valley are the ideas, the models, the practices," noted DHMC's senior nurse executive, Nancy Formella, who rounded out the slate of speakers. "The care and the innovations in care, the improved treatments and therapies—they start right here in this community and they work every day to benefit the patients of our region" . . . and, ultimately, the world.

Laura Stephenson Carter

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Dartmouth Medical SchoolDartmouth-Hitchcock Medical CenterWhite River Junction VAMCNorris Cotton Cancer CenterDartmouth College