As we celebrate 30 years since the cancer center admitted its first patient on October 27, 1986, many words come to mind – vision, dream, tenacity, persistence, hard work – and foremost the word “courage.”
In this issue of Moffitt Momentum magazine, which commemorates the 30-year anniversary of Moffitt Cancer Center, you will read how the center became a reality because of the vision and courage of the institution’s founder, H. Lee Moffitt.
Selected stories provide firsthand accounts of our origins and the continuing dedication of advocates and friends of the cancer center. You will meet Dr. Julie Djeu, Moffitt’s first researcher, Lori Fox, one of Moffitt’s first registered nurses, and surgeon Dr. Julio Pow- Sang, who has been with Moffitt since the early years. Ted Couch, who made the leap of faith establishing our center’s first endowed research chair, describes his philosophy. Long-time Moffitt Board of Advisors member Gov. Bob Martinez discusses changes that have taken place in Tampa and why having a nationally recognized cancer center plays a key role in growing Tampa Bay.
In just three decades, with an unchanging mission – to contribute to the prevention and cure of cancer – Moffitt has become one of the top cancer centers and research institutes in the nation.
The center has been privileged with so many committed board members, donors, advocates, volunteers, faculty and team members that it would be impossible to include them all. There are numerous people from all walks of life to thank, and it is most appropriate to pause at this anniversary and recognize and thank those who, through their initiative, dedication, expertise, hard work and courage have helped drive the cancer center forward to where we are today.
We hope you enjoy reading this issue. While we have much to celebrate, clearly the future holds great promise, and we have much work to do as we plan for the next 30 years and beyond. Thank you for joining us in this quest.