Update on historic Knight gift for OHSU cardiovascular institute

Drs. Starr & KaulDecember 11, 2012

Dear OHSU Community:

As you know, Phil and Penny Knight recently made a transformative $125 million philanthropic investment to establish an OHSU cardiovascular institute.

We are proud to partner with the Knights and enormously excited by the possibilities ahead. We want to share this excitement with you and invite you to be involved in our process. As such, this is the first of what will be regular messages from us to the OHSU community and beyond to share news about the establishment of the cardiovascular institute.

Our first piece of news is exciting. We are thrilled to announce that we have received a formal blessing from Phil and Penny Knight to name our new cardiovascular institute in their honor. Under the name the OHSU Knight Cardiovascular Institute, we hope to become internationally known as a game-changing center for the best in cardiovascular research, care and professional training. The Knights' decision to honor us in this way is a great privilege, and it underscores their depth of confidence in OHSU's leadership, faculty and staff.

As for the evolving specifics of the organizational structure of the new Knight, we have some details to share on this as well.

The new institute will be within the School of Medicine, and faculty will hold academic appointments in a relevant school department, along with their membership in the Knight Cardiovascular Institute. The Knight Cardiovascular Institute will focus on recruiting top minds from around the world, as well as retaining and supporting current faculty. We will be aided in our leadership of the institute by an internal board and several external advisory groups, now being assembled.

Reflecting OHSU's commitment to collaboration, we will invest in new research capacity in ways that serve the entire OHSU scientific community, driving progress across the full spectrum of biomedical research. We are currently exploring specific options for how to invest in what will be the institute's signature research themes. From a research perspective, the institute will be organized intellectually around cross-disciplinary interest groups focused on disease and biology. Early on, we also intend to focus on an expansion of our clinical capacity.

As we map out the thematic mission-based contours of the institute, we are simultaneously developing a long-term sustainable business model. The Office of the Dean has issued a Request for Proposals for expertise in business planning, which will include an evaluation of the existing relevant research and clinical landscape and an analysis of possible future business strategies within the context of the academic health center framework. We expect to have a preliminary business plan completed by March 2013. Mark Richardson, Lawrence Furnstahl, Peter Rapp, Irene Barhyte and Daniel Dorsa* are involved in developing all aspects of the institute.

In closing, thank you for the ideas many of you have shared with us already. We will continue to provide updates on the formation of the Knight Cardiovascular Institute over the coming months. Working together, we will make heart disease history.


Albert Starr, M.D.

Co-director, OHSU Knight Cardiovascular Institute

Distinguished Professor of Surgery and Cardiovascular Medicine

Sanjiv Kaul, M.D.

Co-director, OHSU Knight Cardiovascular Institute

Distinguished Professor and Head of the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, Department of Medicine


Mark Richardson, M.D., Dean, OHSU School of Medicine

Lawrence Furnstahl, Chief Financial Officer, OHSU

Peter Rapp, Executive Vice President, OHSU; Executive Director, OHSU Healthcare

Irene Barhyte, Senior Associate Dean for Finance and Administration, OHSU School of Medicine

Daniel Dorsa, Ph.D., Senior Vice President for Research, OHSU