The Scripps Society Celebrated The Moody Foundation’s Announcement Of A $12M Gift To CRI With Dinner And A Very Special Singer

While Kathy and Harlan Crow were in Washington, D.C., they left “the key under the mat” for The Scripps Society’s annual dinner on Tuesday, October 24.

For newcomers, The Scripps Society was named after Debbie and Ric Scripps, who “have embodied the Children’s Medical Center mission.” It’s made up of people who have provided one million dollars or more for the Children’s Medical Center Research Institute at UT Southwestern, better known as CRI.

Sean Morrison, Christopher Durovich, Francie Moody-Dahlberg, Kevin Dahlberg and Brent Christopher

But on this occasion, Children’s Medical Center Foundation President Brent Christopher and Children’s Health CEO Christopher Durovich had a breathtaking surprise for the group whose funds had generously supported pediatric healthcare.

Following dinner in the Crow Library, it was announced that The Moody Foundation had gifted a whopping $12M for CRI.

Jamie Williams and Ralph DeBerardinis

Despite having coordinated the arrangement of the gift, Foundation Human Resources Director/Regional Grant Director for North Texas Jamie Williams admitted that it had been quite an undertaking, but well worth it. Thanks to the gift, CRI will be able to “attract the world’s top scientists to Dallas to work alongside other researchers at CRI and will fuel their research for the next decade.”

As for Moody Foundation Chair/Executive Director Francie Moody-Dahlberg and husband Kevin Dahlberg, they were amazed at the magnificence of the library. It was their first time to visit.

In the crowd were CRI’s Dr. Sean Morrison, Dr. Ralph DeBerardinis, Dr. Hao Zhu,Christina Durovich, Marnie and Kern Wildenthal, Sherry Vittrup and CRI’s Dr. Sean Morrison, Dr. Ralph DeBerardinis, and Dr. Hao Zhu.

Hao Zhu, Russell Vittrup and Sherry Vittrup

Another highlight of  the evening was Children’s patient Russell Vittrup‘s singing some “Old Blue Eyes” favorites. Having been diagnosed with leukemia his first  year in college, Russell’s story, like his singing, is mesmerizing.

Thanks to The Moody Foundation and the members of The Scripps Society, medical research is creating life-saving treatments and diagnoses for others like Russell.

JUST IN: The Moody Foundation Awards Children’s Health With $12M To Attract The World’s Top Scientists And Researchers To CRI

At their annual dinner, the Children’s Medical Center Foundation million-dollar donors/members of The Scripps Society had a delicious surprise that had jaws literally dropping at Kathy and Harlan Crow’s home Tuesday night. And while this crowd is renowned for their generosity, they were more than delighted with the news about an uber gift of generosity. The reason was courtesy of The Moody Foundation.

With Francie Moody-Dahlberg and husband Kevin Dahlberg smiling, it was announced that the Foundation had presented a $12 million gift to Children’s Health. The monies will “establish a prestigious faculty scholar program designed to attract the world’s top scientists to Dallas work alongside other researchers at Children’s Medical Center Research Institute at UT Southwestern (CRI).”

Sean Morrison, Christopher Durovich, Francie Moody-Dahlberg, Kevin Dahlberg and Brent Christopher

According to CRI Director Dr. Sean Morrison, “We are deeply honored by this generous gift from the Moody Foundation that will accelerate our ability to make discoveries that improve the diagnosis and treatment of disease in children.”

Jamie Williams and Ralph DeBerardinis

The immediate plan calls for $5M to “create a new Robert L. Moody Sr. Faculty Scholar endowment to support the research of a leading scientist at CRI.” The first Scholar will be Dr. Ralph DeBerardinis, who is director of CRI’s Genetic and Metabolic Program and professor in CRI. Thanks to his laboratory, new strategies have been provided for treating cancer by exploiting metabolic differences between cancer cells and normal cells.”

The Foundation will continue its support of CRI’s world-class medical research “for at least 10 years with a distribution of $700,000 or more every year.”

As Francie put it, “With this gift, we hope to increase the impact of the Children’s Research Institute and attract the most brilliant scientists and researchers from around the globe to North Texas.”

This latest gift brings the total of The Moody Foundation’s support of CRI to $17.35M, “placing it among the top 10 largest cumulative donors for Children’s Health in the system’s 104-year history.”

Children’s Health President/CEO Christopher Durovich summed it up: “Given the established track records of these scientists for finding the pathways to medical breakthroughs, the Moody investment will benefit countless generations yet to come, especially in our relentless pursuit of the discovery of tomorrow’s treatments.”

Once again philanthropy is the reason that North Texas is recognized as a world leader in healthcare research and treatments.  

According to Children’s Medical Center Foundation Brent Christopher, “This is an extraordinary gift. We’ve had a long-standing relationship with the Moody Foundation, and we’re inspired by this powerful collaboration with one of Texas’ most revered philanthropic families.

 “Permanent, private philanthropic support like this is an invaluable tool for these researchers. It is a unique, reliable resource for proven scientists who are at the top of their game and will launch them into their next phase of life-changing discoveries.”

Ironically, on the first night of the World Series, Brent summed it up, “CRI scientists knock it out each month.” 

Nicely played for the team of  The Moody Foundation, Children’s Health and Children’s Medical Center Research Institute at UT Southwestern (CRI) for generations to come.      

2017 Virginia Chandler Dykes Leadership Award Kick-Off Party Celebrated Dr. Stephen Mansfield’s Selection

Francie Moody-Dahlberg

Francie Moody-Dahlberg

Even from the curb, it was pretty obvious that 2016 Virginia Chandler Dykes Leadership Awardee Francie Moody-Dahlberg and her husband Kevin Dahlberg know how to showcase fall. Pumpkins galore were perfectly place around the front of their Park Cities home. Even a tree had pumpkins coiling around the trunk and up into the limbs.  It was the perfect welcome for guests of the Virginia Chandler Dykes Leadership Award kick-off party on Wednesday, November 9.

Michael Meadows, Sharon McCullough and Brent Christopher

Michael Meadows, Sharon McCullough and Brent Christopher

Once past the entry hall the crowd, including Sharon and Mike McCullough, Michael Meadows, Chris Durovich, Jamie Williams and 2012 Virginia Chandler Dykes Leadership Awardees Myrna and Bob Schlegel, gathered in the kitchen and family room. No change that. They filled to overcapacity the kitchen and family room.

The 2017 Virginia Chandler Dyke Leadership Awardee Dr. Stephen Mansfield was surrounded by well-wishers like Brent Christopher and evening host Bank of Texas’ Bob White, while Stephen’s wife Marilyn was across the room also surrounded.

Stephen Mansfield and Bob White

Stephen Mansfield and Bob White

Virginia Chandler Dykes

Virginia Chandler Dykes

Making her way through into the crowd was award namesake Virginia Chandler Dykes.

Missing from the evening was Texas Women’s University Chancellor/President Carine Feyten, whose husband, Chad Wick, was on the mend after undergoing surgery earlier in the day.  

Plans were revealed that Stephen will be honored officially at the 15th Annual Virginia Chandler Dykes Leadership Award Luncheon on Wednesday, March 8, at Belo Mansion benefiting the Virginia Chandler Dykes Endowed Scholarship Fund at TWU. Since its inception, the luncheon has provided more than $550,000 in scholarships.

Virginia Chandler Dykes Leadership Award Luncheon Honors Francie Moody-Dahlberg With Standing O’s And Gracious Accolades

The Belo Mansion staff had hardly gotten finished with the Elisa Project’s “Life Lessons” breakfast with Catherine and Sean Lowe and Brian Cuban on Wednesday, February 10, than they were setting up for the Virginia Chandler Dykes Leadership Award Luncheon honoring Francie Moody-Dahlberg.

Outside the sun was shining, the sky was clear and the temperatures were just chilly enough to warrant a pashmina or sweater.

As guests arrived to check in, someone asked if there had been a nearby fire because there seemed to be guests with smudged brows. A friend nudged the person and reminded them it was Ash Wednesday.

Jamie Williams, Francie Moody-Dahlberg, Kevin Dahlberg, Carine Feyten, Chad Wick and Patricia Crocker

Jamie Williams, Francie Moody-Dahlberg, Kevin Dahlberg, Carine Feyten, Chad Wick and Patricia Crocker

When honoree Francie arrived with husband Kevin Dahlberg, it was the perfect time for a photo opp with Texas Woman’s University President Carine Feyton, her husband Chad Wick and Patricia Crocker. After the official photos were taken, Kevin whipped out his trusty Canon and shot his own photos of the group.

Virginia Chandler Dykes

Virginia Chandler Dykes

At 11:15 Virginia Chandler Dykes had arrived and was escorted to the grand ballroom to review the day’s arrangements. She then headed out the door only to be greeted like a rock star by the crowd. And Virginia was the poster child of graciousness as she welcomed each.

Just 15 minutes later the doors were on the verge of being opened when a question was raised on whether to use a hand mic or lavaliere. As the search commenced for the lavaliere, the doors opened and seven guests managed to slip in and get to their assigned table. The lavaliere was found and was tested and tested and tested against the handheld.

While the crowd tried nudging and opening the ballroom’s front doors, Belo vets and past Virginia Chandler Sykes Leadership Awardees Tincy Miller and Marnie and Kern Wildenthal took the side door and headed to their tables.

Francie Moody-Dahlberg and Kevin Dahlberg

Francie Moody-Dahlberg and Kevin Dahlberg

Greg Hext, Kevin Dahlberg, Mike Gruber and Michael Meadows

Greg Hext, Kevin Dahlberg, Mike Gruber and Michael Meadows

Ben Casey

Ben Casey

Bobby Lyle and Brent Christopher

Bobby Lyle and Brent Christopher

At 11:40 the front doors opened to let Virginia in. Finally five minutes later the doors were officially opened. First in was Francie, followed by nearly 400 people including Bobby Lyle, Brent Christopher, past Dykes awardees Mary Brinegar and Lindalyn Adams, Ben Casey, Michael Meadows, Greg Hext, Mike Gruber, Bob White, Ruben Esquivel, Brian Dyers, Kathleen Gibson, Jacque Wynne, Chris Durovich, Bill Braem and a late-arriving Amy Green. A slight stall occurred when Francie was stopped in the doorway by a friend and another friend and another friend.

Bob White

Bob White

By the time the seats were all taken at 12:10, the doors closed and a female voice was heard over the PA welcoming the group and introducing Virginia to the podium. Her words were brief but she proudly told how $½M had been raised over the years for the scholarship funds “to attract the best and brightest graduate students to TWU.” Virginia then introduced Bank of Texas’s Executive VP Bob White and thanked him for Bank of Texas’ presenting the luncheon for 10 years.

In typical Bob White style, he described Virginia as “style and grace” and used the word “excellence” for TWU.

After lunch (spinach and butter lettuce with brie and julienne of apple and sweet sherry vinaigrette, herb-dusted filet beef with maître d’butter accompanied by Boursin cheese mashed potatoes, asparagus and a roasted tomato and bread with butter and milk chocolate mousse), Virginia took a seat in a chair on stage and Carine thanked Bank of Texas CEO Norm Bagwell and all those who had made the luncheon possible and recognized past recipients.

A video was showing including Regina Campbell, Virginia and Carine with the message that Virginia’s grandmother had instilled in her: “Get a good education and no one can take it away from you.”

With that Carine invited all to show their appreciation for Virginia resulting in a standing ovation. In turn, Virginia rose from her chair and applauded the hundreds in the room.

Carine then provided a state-of-the-union on TWU including such facts as that it

  • Will provide the state’s first university center for women entrepreneurs.
  • Will be the new home of the Woodcock Institute for the Advancement of Neurocognitive Research and Applied Practice.
  • Graduates about 80 veterans annually.
  • Is the country’s largest public university primarily for women.

Just before 1 p.m. 2015 Dykes Awardee Ralph Hawkins introduced Francie, who was given a standing ovation. In accepting her award, she kept her remarks brief and gracious.

Carine then told the audience that the Moody Foundation had presented a $200K grant to TWU.

TWU Provost /VP of Academic Affairs Robert Neely then presented the 2016 scholarship awards to Veronica Rowe from the College of Health Sciences, Erin Ellis-Guffey of the College of Arts and Sciences, Tara Signs of the College of Professional Education and Mary Roberts of the College of Nursing.