When I was offered the job of chief executive officer, it didn’t take long for me to make a decision. I was so impressed with all that Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center and the School of Medicine has accomplished in research, clinical care and education throughout its long history, I said “Sure, I would love to do that.”
I see a real passion here to improve health, and it is powerful. I believe we’re fortunate to work together now in this time of reinvention, bold thinking and possibility in health care. I see a great opportunity to do good in our world and to dramatically advance our mission to improve health.
That includes building the kinds of partnerships—including philanthropic—that can help us lead the way for other academic medical centers. I’ve seen things that we’re doing here that no one else is doing, and I’ve seen our dedication to innovation on a daily basis.
I have not yet had the privilege of meeting members of the Hartman family of Austin, Texas (featured in this issue), but I have heard much of their story—from their commitment to investing in our Alzheimer’s research in honor of their family patriarch, the resulting response from others that pushed the Hartman Foundation Challenge past its $2 million goal and the role that effort played in establishing our Alzheimer’s Disease Core Center.
Their story is an inspiring example of the difference that the best partnerships can make in advancing human health.
As I walk around our Medical Center, I feel so proud to be here. The partnerships we form with one another—the people of Wake Forest Baptist and the people who care about it—will be vital to our success.
My pledge is to do my best, with your help, to make this Medical Center even better and more amazing than it’s always been.
Julie A. Freischlag, MD
Chief Executive Officer,
Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center
Interim Dean, Wake Forest School of Medicine