The DeGasperis family donation will significantly further research and enhance patient care at the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre.

Toronto (May 5, 2004) - Toronto General & Western Hospital Foundation is pleased to announce the DeGasperis family's generous gift of $7 million. The DeGasperis family through Alfredo, Angelo and Antonio, operate Con-Drain Company Limited, a leading Ontario sewer and water-main contractor headquartered in Concord, Ontario. They were prompted to make this exceptional gift by the remarkable dedication and talent of heart surgeons in the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre at Toronto General Hospital.

The gift will secure the excellence of the cardiovascular surgery program at the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre by creating three new endowed chairs. These endowments will help to recruit and retain clinicians and/or scientists who are world leaders in their fields of research.

The three endowed chairs and their focus are the:

  • Angelo & Lorenza DeGasperis Chair in Cardiovascular Surgery Research;
  • Alfredo & Teresa DeGasperis Chair in the Surgical Management of Heart Failure; and
  • Antonio & Helga DeGasperis Chair in Clinical Trials and Outcomes Research.

Dr. Tirone David, Head of the Division of Cardiovascular Surgery and holder of the Melanie Munk Chair in Cardiovascular Surgery is the individual surgeon who particularly inspired the family's gift. Dr. David is known as one of the world's foremost cardiovascular surgeons, who has developed state-of-the-art operative procedures that have saved thousands of lives around the world.

"Through their generosity, the DeGasperis family will help advance research and innovation in the much needed areas of the heart and circulation program," said Dr. David. "Endowed chairs are critical assets to retaining and recruiting world leading clinicians and scientists. These Chairs further our ability to achieve global impact on the research and treatment of heart disease."

In appreciation for the generosity of the DeGasperis family, the Conservatory, a sunny oasis for patients and their families, in Toronto General Hospital's Clinical Services Building will be named in their honour. "We are thrilled to announce this gift, these chairs, and to honour the DeGasperis family with the dedication of the DeGasperis Conservatory," said, Anthony S. Fell, Chair, UHN Trustees.

"Generosity of this nature helps University Heath Network's hospitals provide the best patient care possible, and helps our research institutes further innovation and discovery."

About Toronto General & Western Hospital Foundation

Toronto General & Western Hospital Foundation (TG&WH Foundation) at University Health Network (UHN) raises funds for research, education and the enhancement of patient care at Toronto General Hospital and Toronto Western Hospital. TG&WH Foundation and the other UHN partner foundations, the Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation and the Arthritis & Autoimmunity Research Centre Foundation, have recently embarked on a $400 million fundraising campaign, Together We Make Life Better. TG&WH Foundation is committed to raising $250 million toward this goal.

About Toronto General Hospital

Toronto General Hospital and its research arm, Toronto General Research Institute, have achieved an international reputation as global leaders in areas such as cardiology, transplantation, surgical innovation, infectious diseases, and genomic medicine. Toronto General Hospital is a member of the University Health Network, which also includes Toronto Western Hospital and Princess Margaret Hospital. All three are teaching hospitals affiliated with the University of Toronto.

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