The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas
Bernard and Audre Rapoport, who live in Waco, have always shared a deep concern for promoting peace, justice, and education. For years, they have fostered worthwhile projects in public and higher education, government, public broadcasting, religion, human services, medicine, and the arts.
They have been especially dedicated to the University of Texas System and its institutions. At UT Southwestern Medical Center, their diligent support has fostered numerous research programs and patient-care initiatives over the past two decades.
Their latest contribution to the medical center – a $1 million gift in July 2007 to establish a distinguished chair in clinical care and research, is directed at improving care to indigent patients, a cause to which the Rapoports have been devoted.
The gift, which was given as part of the medical center’s $500 million Innovations in Medicine campaign, will create the Audre and Bernard Rapoport Distinguished Chair in Clinical Care and Research. The chair will help to improve the quality and delivery of healthcare services to people in North Texas with limited access to conventional medical resources.
“Audre and I have long been dedicated to aiding progress – both social and technological,” said Mr. Rapoport. “Because we have remained focused on helping the underserved populations of Texas, this latest gift is particularly meaningful for us. And, as longtime believers in the work being done at UT Southwestern, it is always a pleasure to support its stellar programs.”
Previous gifts to UT Southwestern from the couple have established the Audre and Bernard Rapoport Center for Cardiovascular Research, the Audre and Bernard Rapoport Distinguished Professorship in Cardiovascular Research, and the Audre Newman Rapoport Distinguished Chair in Pediatric Endocrinology at UT Southwestern.
Dr. M. Beth Brickner directs the Rapoport Center for Cardiovascular Research, which focuses on congenital heart disease in adults. Her current investigative efforts include projects to identify barriers to healthcare access, pregnancy outcomes in women with congenital heart disease, and physiologic determinants of exercise capacity in adults who have received a Fontan heart operation.
Dr. Perrin White, Professor of Pediatrics, holds the Audre Newman Rapoport Chair at UT Southwestern. Dr. White, who leads the medical center’s pediatric endocrinology program, has studied the molecular basis of several genetic diseases of steroid hormone synthesis and metabolism. Some of these diseases affect growth, sexual differentiation, or the ability to conserve salt in the blood, whereas others cause high blood pressure. Most recently, he has branched into study of a very large cell-surface molecule that his laboratory discovered. It is important for development of the nervous system; mutations in this protein cause seizures, deafness, and progressive blindness.
Dr. John Warner, Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine, is the new holder of the Audre and Bernard Rapoport Chair in Cardiovascular Research. His research on coronary angioplasty and stenting, advanced cardiac imaging, adult congenital heart disease, and hypertrophic cardiomyopathy has earned him national acclaim.
Bernard and Audre Rapoport
“The Rapoport’s loyal, longtime support is deeply felt by all of us at UT Southwestern and throughout the UT System,” said Dr. Kern Wildenthal, President of UT Southwestern. “Audre and ‘B’ are true champions of medical care and research, and they have spent their lives tirelessly aiding those in need. Their confidence in us as a worthy place to invest is something of which we are very proud, and we appreciate the progress that their support has made possible.”
Mrs. Rapoport has special interests in social services for women and children and has served on the board of directors of Planned Parenthood. A Chicago native, she enjoys traveling on business trips with her husband.
Mr. Rapoport, a 1939 graduate of UT Austin, founded American Income Life Insurance Company in Waco in 1951 and serves as Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer.
Born in San Antonio, he was appointed to the Board of Regents of the UT System by Governor Ann Richards in 1991 and was elected Chairman in 1993.