Philanthropic Awards Announced

UH has announced its 2012 Samuel Mather Visionary Award honorees. They are Jane and Lee Seidman and Charlotte A. and Charles D. Fowler and their daughters and sons-in-law, Chann Fowler-Spellman and Edward F. Spellman, and Holley Fowler Martens and Robert F. Martens. This year’s UH Distinguished Physician Award goes to UH Harrington Heart & Vascular Institute’s Albert L. Waldo, MD, FACC, international authority on atrial fibrillation.

The Fowler Family

The Fowler family has transformed tragedy into hope.

Through their philanthropy, the Fowlers – Charlotte A. and Charles D. Fowler and their daughters and sons-in-law, Chann Fowler-Spellman and Edward F. Spellman, and Holley Fowler Martens and Robert F. Martens – established the Angie Fowler Adolescent & Young Adult Cancer Institute. The Fowler family’s inspirational gift was announced on July 12, 2011, on what would have been Angie Fowler’s 43rd birthday. Angie, the Fowler’s beloved daughter and sister, was just 14 when she was diagnosed with melanoma. The vivacious teen battled her disease valiantly, but succumbed within a year.

The Angie Fowler Cancer Institute, a joint effort of UH Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital and UH Seidman Cancer Center, offers great hope for young people battling cancer. Its work is especially important because survival rates for the adolescent and young adult (AYA) patient population have lagged well behind those achieved for pediatric and adult patients. The institute galvanizes all areas needed to improve outcomes – including increasing the availability of promising clinical trials.

The institute will be housed on beautifully renovated floors of the Leonard and Joan Horvitz Tower, where it will provide complete inpatient and outpatient care, including diagnosis, treatment and follow-up. A keen focus on the special social, emotional and activity needs of teens and young adults will be a hallmark of the institute. The project also will include a new rooftop garden.

The Fowlers previously established the Angie Fowler Chair in Adolescent and Young Adult Cancer Research that helped recruit a renowned physician-scientist in the field. The Fowlers’ is the largest known gift in support of AYA cancer, and will help many children survive and go on to live happy and healthy lives.

University Hospitals is thrilled to bestow its highest honor, the Samuel Mather Visionary Award, on the Fowlers to recognize their heartfelt philanthropy in memory of Angie.

Jane and Lee Seidman

Jane and Lee Seidman’s tremendous generosity has always been equally matched by their joie de vivre. Longtime philanthropic leaders in Northeast Ohio, the Seidmans fill the room with life. This resolve to spread goodwill to others was central to the Seidmans’s decision to make a transformative gift to University Hospitals in 2010. After the loss of several beloved family members to cancer, the Seidmans wanted to be part of a cure.

Named in their honor, UH Seidman Cancer Center includes a network of eight outpatient cancer programs and the region’s first freestanding cancer hospital – one of only 12 in the United States. The center brings together clinical innovation and compassionate care under one elegant roof. Patients have access to more than 300 clinical trials, many of which are testing new therapies developed by physician-scientists at UH Seidman Cancer Center.

The Seidmans previously established the Jane and Lee Seidman Chair in Pediatric Innovation at UH Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital to support advancements in pediatric cancer care.

Lee founded The Motorcars Group in 1958 and grew the company into one of the largest auto dealership networks in the United States with 36 franchises. After retiring, Jane and Lee vowed to bring this same strategic prowess to their philanthropy.

When Jane and Lee announced their extraordinary commitment to a crowd of 1,000 gathered at Severance Hall, Lee held up a dusty white home plate and encouraged the crowd to “step up and hit a home run for philanthropy.” The couple are leaders – in every regard – and because of their extraordinary service to the countless families who will benefit from their gift to cancer care, we are delighted to honor them this evening.

Albert L. Waldo, MD, FACC

Albert L. Waldo, MD, FACC, developed exceptional humility growing up in the Bronx. It was a down-to-earth place where “it didn’t matter who you were – you still needed a token to get on the subway,” he says. No matter. Dr. Waldo’s accomplishments during his 40-plus year career as an internationally renowned cardiac electrophysiologist speak for themselves.

Dr. Waldo, Associate Chief of Cardiovascular Medicine for Academic Affairs at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center and at the UH Harrington Heart & Vascular Institute, is an international authority on atrial fibrillation (A-fib), a common heart rhythm disorder that often results in stroke. He was among the first to map the electrical activation of the human heart and discovered entrainment, a heart pacing method critical for diagnosis and treatment of rapid heart rhythms. His leadership and diligent pursuit of science have resulted in better diagnosis, treatment and prevention of heart rhythm disorders, saving lives now and in the future.

Dr. Waldo's scientific articles have appeared in more than 400 publications. He has received numerous awards, including Distinguished Scientist from the Heart Rhythm Society, formerly NASPE, in 1997; and the American College of Cardiology in 2009. These awards represent the highest honors for scientific research and clinical care.

Dr. Waldo treats patients, leads new research and lectures widely. In addition to his clinical and research activities for UH Harrington Heart & Vascular Institute, he is the Walter H. Pritchard Professor of Cardiology, Professor of Medicine and Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine.

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