ARLINGTON, TEXAS, April 29, 2021 – Texas Health Resources announced Laura McWhorter has been named president of the Texas Health Resources Foundation, effective May 10. Stepping into her new role, McWhorter will focus on bringing together strategic partnerships through fundraising to solve the greatest challenges within the communities Texas Health is privileged to serve.
“Texas Health has a rich history of philanthropy both inside and outside the walls of our health system, and it is our responsibility to be good stewards of these investments from our community,” said Barclay Berdan, FACHE, CEO of Texas Health. “Laura brings vital qualities to this role, namely her proven track record for garnering philanthropic investment and deep knowledge of both the North Texas region and Texas Health. We are excited to have her leading the Foundation.”
Most recently, McWhorter spent 18 months as chief philanthropy officer at North Texas Community Foundation. Prior to that she was vice president of the Texas Health Resources Foundation, having risen in progressively larger roles throughout a 22-year career at Texas Health.
As Texas Health looks to the future and the need for philanthropic support, the arrival of a global pandemic put a spotlight on healthcare and the importance of quality care as a critical community asset every day and in times of crisis. A large number of first-time donors were inspired to help through financial support and in-kind donations of meals and personal protective equipment for front-line healthcare workers. Now, Texas Health, in partnership with funders and leveraging federal resources, is working to increase community vaccination efforts to reach the region’s most underserved communities.
“We saw collaboration, generosity and innovation on an unimaginable level,” Berdan said. “Donors stepped up and philanthropy grew tremendously in 2020 as funders responded to the pandemic in unprecedented ways, even during economic uncertainty.”
McWhorter said that COVID-19 has magnified the social inequities that exist in North Texas, such as unstable housing, food insecurities and access to affordable healthcare.
“Texas Health is focused on addressing these issues now and into the future,” McWhorter said. “Philanthropic support is more important than ever to improve the health of our community. Working alongside key partners whose interests align with ours in terms of health equity and social determinants will help produce long-term sustainable change in the health of those in need.”
McWhorter secured the lead gift from the Jane & John Justin Foundation in the early phase of the philanthropic campaign for the new Jane & John Justin Tower at Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Fort Worth. The tower is expected to open in 2022.
“I’m pleased to re-join Texas Health at a time when they are deeply engaged in significant projects that can truly impact the trajectory of the health and well-being of North Texans,” McWhorter said. “From construction of the new Justin Tower in Fort Worth, to the modernization of the Perot Center for Women and Infants in Dallas to Graduate Medical Education programs that train our next generation of physicians, to programs with locally based organizations to address health inequities, Texas Health is responding to the needs of the North Texas community. I am truly excited for the key role philanthropy will play.”