We are pleased to share some exciting news. Earlier today, we announced the creation of the Katy O. and Paul M. Rady Esophageal and Gastric Center of Excellence at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, made possible with a remarkable $20 million commitment from philanthropic leaders Katy and Paul Rady.
The Rady Center of Excellence will set our campus apart nationally by focusing resources to advance esophageal and gastric cancer research and clinical trials, bolster screening and surveillance efforts, and accelerate the development of next-generation diagnostic tools and novel therapeutics. Priorities include recruitment and retention of top talent, a focus on innovation and discovery, and expansion of our existing biorepository named for Katy’s late brother, Paul R. O’Hara II.
We are pleased to announce that Sachin Wani, MD, professor of medicine in the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, will serve as inaugural Rady Center of Excellence director and Katy O. and Paul M. Rady Endowed Chair in Esophageal Cancer Research. He and CU Cancer Center Director Richard Schulick, MD, MBA, have worked closely alongside the Radys on a shared vision for taking our esophageal and gastric expertise to new heights.
We are deeply grateful to the Radys for their continued philanthropic partnership, which began at CU Anschutz in 2015. When Katy Rady lost her brother, Paul R. O’Hara II, to esophageal cancer that year, she established an endowed chair at the CU Cancer Center as a lasting tribute to his memory. In gratitude for the care he received from a multidisciplinary team led by Madeleine Kane, MD, PhD, the Radys hoped their gift would ultimately spare other families the pain of loss they had endured and hasten promising research. The Radys have also funded cancer research seed grants and helped launch an annual esophagogastric cancer symposium that brings together patients, caregivers and providers for the latest developments in the field.
Not only have Katy and Paul Rady made an impact at CU Anschutz, they have also invested in cardiac research and care at Children's Hospital Colorado and endowed faculty chairs at CU Boulder. Passionate supporters of higher education, the Radys helped pioneer a partnership between CU and Western Colorado University, Paul’s alma mater, to name the Paul M. Rady School of Computer Science and Engineering, enabling students on Western’s Gunnison campus to earn CU Boulder degrees.
The establishment of the Katy O. and Paul M. Rady Esophageal and Gastric Center of Excellence will further elevate the CU Cancer Center among the top cancer research and care destinations in the country. This thoughtful gift will enable physicians and researchers to explore new approaches to treatment and pursue big ideas with untold potential. With this philanthropic investment, our faculty have the valuable resources needed to drive advancements in the prevention, detection and treatment of esophageal and gastric cancers.
Please join us in celebrating all that the Radys will make possible with this transformational commitment to speed progress in esophageal and gastric cancer research and care.
John J. Reilly, Jr., MD
Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs
Dean, School of Medicine