OMRF has received a $1 million gift from Tulsa’s Hardesty Family Foundation, Inc.
The donation will be used to help establish the Cardiovascular Center in OMRF’s new research tower. With the donation, OMRF has now surpassed the $80 million mark in the $125 million fundraising campaign for its campus expansion.
“OMRF is an international leader in cardiovascular research and the development of life-saving treatments,” said F. Roger Hardesty, who established the Hardesty Family Foundation, Inc. with his wife, Donna, in 2006. “We think this gift can make a difference worldwide, all while keeping research funds in Oklahoma.”
The Tulsa businessman is founder and CEO of the Hardesty Company, an Oklahoma-based corporation with diversified holdings, including the United States Aviation Company, an aircraft charter and flight-based operations business. Hardesty, who has appeared on the Forbes 400 list, has also led companies in the real estate and construction sectors.
“Roger and Donna Hardesty have achieved so much by daring not only to dream but also to labor tirelessly to make those dreams come true,” said OMRF President Stephen Prescott, M.D. “OMRF will work hard to make their vision of a healthier Oklahoma a reality.”
With the $1 million donation, OMRF has completed the matching requirement to receive a $1.7 million gift from Tulsa’s J.E. and L.E. Mabee Foundation. Those funds will also go to OMRF’s Cardiovascular Center, which is scheduled to open in January 2011.
The Cardiovascular Center will be a part of OMRF’s research tower, an 8-story facility that will add 186,000 square feet of clinical and research space to OMRF’s campus. The Center will occupy one floor of the tower and be home to the laboratories of 8 principal scientists and more than 40 research and support staff.
The scientists will pursue a wide spectrum of projects, including investigation of the root causes of atherosclerosis, the build-up of fats in the lining of the arteries that can lead to stroke and heart attack. They will also focus on understanding and controlling blood vessel development, which is crucial to stopping cardiovascular disease.
“Heart disease is a scourge all over the United States, but especially in Oklahoma,” said Prescott. According to the Oklahoma Department of Health, heart disease is the state’s leading killer. “Thanks to the Hardesty family’s generosity, OMRF will keep working to put an end to that epidemic.”