|APRIL 3, 2003 | The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) honored Pat Walker of Springdale, Ark., and the late Willard Walker yesterday for their contributions to the Pat and Willard Walker Eye Research Center.|
The center is part of the Harvey and Bernice Jones Eye Institute at UAMS.
John P. Shock, M.D., director of the eye institute and executive vice chancellor of UAMS, praised the Walkers for “a legacy of giving second to none in Arkansas” and promised that the Walkers’ gift of $6 million would help the institute become a national leader in research on blindness and eye diseases.
Speaking to Pat Walker, who sat with family members on the front row of Sam Walton Auditorium, UAMS Chancellor I. Dodd Wilson, M.D., evoked the memory of her husband, who died recently. “All day, I’ve been thinking about Willard. For me, it’as almost like he’s here.”
Dean E. Albert Reece, M.D., Ph.D., M.B.A., of the UAMS College of Medicine, thanked the Walker family for its generosity and marveled at the personal attention that the Walkers and many other philanthropists in Arkansas pay to UAMS. He compared the friendliness of Arkansas donors with charitable supporters at Yale and Temple Universities, where he previously taught. “This is a friendship, a relationship, I have never experienced.”
Dean Reece also alluded to remarks by Jackson T. “Steve” Stephens, Jr., at the April 1 dedication of the Jackson T. Stephens Spine and Neurosciences Institute at UAMS, who spoke of being “entrusted” rather than “entitled.” Dean Reece said the Walker family personifies the “philanthropic leadership” that academic health centers like UAMS depend upon.
Richard Dix, Ph.D., director of the research center, told Mrs. Walker that all future reports of research in journals and other publications would carry acknowledgment of the Pat and Willard Walker Eye Research Center. He thanked her for supporting research, which he said the aerospace engineer Wernher Von Braun joked was “what I’m doing when I don’t know what I’m doing.” Dr. Dix added, “Research is the process by which we uncover the truth.”
Pat Walker of Springdale and family members view a plaque honoring her and Willard Walker which was unveiled at the dedication April 2.
(Kevin Christensen) Click on photo for larger view.
UAMS Honors Pat and Willard Walker at Dedication of Eye Research Center exportuser 2018-01-05T09:08:11+00:00