Baylor College of Medicine's Center for Globalization has been launched with a $5 million gift from BCM Trustee Wallace S. Wilson.

The center will serve as an umbrella for BCM's existing international programs, as well as new global initiatives in education, research and patient care.

Extending global reach

"We have outlined a strategy for extending Baylor's reach around the world," said Dr. Paul Klotman, BCM President and CEO. "Mr. Wilson has been extremely supportive of this vision and is ensuring that we recruit the best leaders and develop the right structures to strategically coordinate all of our activities."

Wilson, the retired chairman of the board of Wilson Industries, has been a member of the BCM board since 2000.

Broaden worldwide presence

"My hope is that the Center for Globalization will broaden Baylor's worldwide presence and impact," Wilson said. "New collaborations and partnerships are essential and I'm proud to be part of this effort."

BCM Board of Trustees Chair Marc J. Shapiro said Wilson recognizes the importance of the College's role, as an academic medical institution, in pursuing a global strategy.

"Wally Wilson's gift will enable us to launch this accelerated effort to develop a global academic platform," Shapiro said. "We are grateful for his support of this strategy for Baylor."

Healthcare, academic partnerships

Baylor's global efforts began with Dr. Michael DeBakey's pioneering heart surgeries for patients around the world and have continued to expand.

Klotman pointed to the work of Dr. Mark Kline in developing the Baylor International Pediatric AIDS Initiative as further evidence of BCM's global reach over the past decade. Kline, chair of pediatrics at BCM and physician-in-chief at Texas Children's Hospital, has grown an idea to help a group of children in Romania to a network of care centers across Africa.

The College also has existing academic partnerships in Latin America, Asia, Africa and Europe, and research projects in 33 countries.

Sharing medical advances

"Now, as the world has become flatter, Baylor's global impact should be greater," Klotman said. "Along with the expertise in research, education and patient care we offer, we will explore all avenues of sharing the medical advances we are developing at Baylor throughout the world more efficiently."

Dr. Navneet Kathuria, BCM's chief performance improvement officer, is leading the College's establishment of the Center for Globalization.

"Our intent is clear and it crosses all of our mission areas. Baylor College of Medicine impacts the health of individuals, regardless of geographical borders," Kathuria said. "And, not only will we accelerate the transfer of our advances to more people, but we also will learn from our collaborators around the world to improve the care we provide in our communities."

Kathuria and an advisory group appointed by Klotman have begun the search process for a director for the Center for Globalization.