2011 Hall of Fame salutes key champions

Inaugural awards dinner recognizes 5 honorees

Pure and simple, The University of Kansas Hospital's inaugural Hall of Fame Dinner was a night of celebration – for the hospital and all those who have helped it become one of the country's top academic medical centers.

More than 300 campus leaders and hospital supporters gathered July 12, 2011, at the Intercontinental as the first class of honorees was inducted. The Hall of Fame was created to recognize those who have advanced the hospital’s vision through their leadership, advocacy and philanthropy.

Hospital President and CEO Bob Page took the audience back to the enormous challenges the hospital faced Oct. 1, 1998, when it became an independent public authority: outdated facilities and technologies, poor patient satisfaction, high employee turnover, little operating capital and escalating financial pressures.

Hall of Fame salutes key champions

A video on the hospital's history and journey to excellence was created for the inaugural Hall of Fame Dinner.

Fast forward to 2011. The hospital has high patient satisfaction, the lowest employee turnover rate in its history and strong financial performance. Survival rates are among the very best in the country for academic medical centers.

"But we realized that through all the hospital's growth and accomplishments, the one thing we had not done is honor some special individuals and organizations that have made our transformation possible," Page said. "Tonight we salute the remark able people and companies doing remarkable things that put The University of Kansas Hospital on the road to success."

KU Medical locations

Inaugural Hall of Fame inductees and hospital leaders presenting awards were (from left) honoree Russell Welsh, Polsinelli Shughart; Brenda Farha, accepting for honoree George Farha, MD; Jon Jackson, senior vice president and chief administrative officer; honoree Frank Ross Jr., Polsinelli Shughart; honoree Ky Hornbaker, United Excel; Tammy Peterman, RN, MS, executive vice president, chief operating officer and chief nursing officer; Bob Page, president and CEO; honoree Annette Bloch; Scott Glasrud, executive vice president and chief financial officer; and honoree Robert Hemenway, PhD.

Awards and honorees:

Legacy Awards

 George Farha, MD Watch the video, chairman of The University of Kansas Hospital Authority Board, 1999-2008 

Farha's unwavering belief in "putting the patient first" became the model that charted the hospital's course from the beginning of the hospital authority. Brenda Farha accepted the award for her husband, who was unable to attend.

Watch the video Robert Hemenway, PhD, University of Kansas chancellor, 1995-2009 

Hemenway championed the radical proposal of removing the hospital from state control to allow it to become an independent public authority. He was the authority board's first chairman in 1998.

Catalyst Award

Watch the video Annette Bloch, philanthropist and advocate 

Her philanthropic gifts of $21 million have expanded the hospital’s heart and cancer programs; her advocacy continues to raise the hospital's profile in the community.

Partner in Excellence Awards

Watch the video Polsinelli Shughart PC 

This firm provided the legal foundation for the hospital authority and has expertly guided and advised the hospital. Russell Welsh, chairman, and Frank Ross Jr., chair, Business Law Department, accepted the award.

Watch the video United Excel Corporation 

This health care project design/builder has helped shape the signature modern look of the hospital through renovation projects and new construction. Ky Hornbaker, president and CEO, accepted the award.

"Many special people have played critical roles in the hospital’s success, including the leaders we've honored tonight. But just as critical are the physicians, nurses and staff members who put the patient first each and every day in extraordinary circumstances," Page concluded.

Patients First Fund to Honor Dr. Farha

Retired Wichita surgeon George Farha, MD, guided The University of Kansas Hospital as its board chair with one philosophy: Put the patient first, and success will follow.

His mantra became the foundation for the hospital’s turnaround. To honor his legacy, the George J. Farha, MD, Patients First Fund has been created to benefit patients through innovative programs and services. You can donate to the fund online, or call Hospital Fund Development at 913.588.2800 for more information.