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Statement on OHSU President Joe Robertson's retirement

On behalf of the OHSU Foundation, we wish Joe the very best as he retires and explores the next chapter in his life, following an exceptional 11 years as the president of Oregon’s only academic health center.

The timing of Joe’s retirement is a deeply personal decision, and we respect his desire to do it now so that he can focus on his health and his family’s well-being. He leaves a tremendous legacy at OHSU that will stand the test of time, moving the institution forward in its service to all Oregonians through education, research and clinical care.

His passion for OHSU is evident, inspiring important philanthropic gifts in support of research for new cures and standards of care. Working with Brian Druker, M.D., director of the Knight Cancer Institute, OHSU stepped up and met the challenge of Nike co-founder Phil Knight and his wife Penny in raising $500 million in less than two years for cancer early detection.

Joe’s vision for OHSU’s future led to unprecedented growth, including the expansion to the South Waterfront with state-of-the-art buildings designed to advance scientific discovery, deliver quality clinical care and teach the next generation of health care providers.

This level of philanthropy and infrastructure has helped OHSU attract some of the world’s best scientists, teachers and providers to join OHSU’s faculty.

Joe frequently talks about OHSU’s 96,000 square mile campus — roughly the size of the state of Oregon — and during his tenure, OHSU expanded its presence throughout the state with clinical programs and partnerships and the Campus for Rural Health.

Today, the future of health care is uncertain with nearly daily headlines proposing changes to the way it is delivered. Joe has been a consistent voice in health policy discussions, both at the state and national level, always advocating that all Oregonians have access to care, and that it be of the highest quality and affordable for all.

While we will miss Joe’s leadership, he is leaving a solid foundation on which we can continue to build into the future.

Ann Edlen chairs the OHSU Foundation.

 

 

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