Jesse Jones (1874-1956) has been called the most powerful person in the nation – only second to President Franklin Roosevelt – during the Great Depression and World War II, and not without good cause. From 1940 to 1945 he held one of the most important positions in Washington as head of the Reconstruction Finance Corporation playing the key role in combating the nation’s many economic problems during and after the Great Depression and overseeing the financing of industrial expansion before and during World War II.
Look around the Texas Medical Center and the names on our medical buildings and you’ll find few honoring women. It was a different day in medicine and most of the health professions back in the 1940s when the Texas Medical Center was born. Except in nursing, women simply were not in leadership roles as these medical center schools and institutions were created. In fact, in as recent as 1965 less than 9 percent of students accepted into U.S. medical schools were women, compared to 47 percent in 2012, according to the American Association of Medical Colleges (AAMC).
Some say Rice University, opened in 1912, is the oldest institution of higher education in Houston. Not so. The UTHealth School of Dentistry takes the honor when you consider the school’s history traces back to 1905.
What is Houston’s gift to humanity? This was the challenge Eric Berger at the Houston Chronicle offered me several weeks before the new year. How would you respond in 500 words or less? Here is my response as it appeared in Eric’s Houston Chronicle blog (SciGuy) on Christmas morning.
John Freeman was all smiles. On a bright sunny day in 1976 he stood next to The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center's president, Lee Clark, admiring the panoramic view of the Texas Medical Center that glittered in the sunlight before them. Clark and his wife, Bertha, lived on the top floor of the old Mayfair Hotel that occupied on Holcombe the footprint that is today MD Anderson’s Rotary House International located just a stone’s throw east of UTHealth’s School of Public Health and School of Nursing.
‘Bout Time is about connecting our past to our present. Dr. Bryant Boutwell is the John P. McGovern Professor of Oslerian Medicine at the McGovern Center for Humanities and Ethics and a Distinguished Teaching Professor. He is the author of two books on the history of Houston and the Texas Medical Center and writes this column to share the stories of our past – stories that define who we are and how we got here.
February 28, 2014 » Jesse Jones: Behind the Houston skyline
February 14, 2014 » Unsung heroines of the Texas Medical Center
January 31, 2014 » Fred Elliott and the UTHealth School of Dentistry
January 17, 2014 » Houston's gift to humanity
January 03, 2014 » From forest to Texas Medical Center