The UT Health Science Center’s ninth President’s Gala Sept. 24 celebrated the military and the important collaborations the Health Science Center shares with the military. More than 1,100 community leaders attended. William L. Henrich, M.D., MACP, president of the Health Science Center, announced that gala proceeds will establish The Maj. Gen. (USA Ret.) Joe and Patty Robles Chair in Military Health Research.
Gen. and Mrs. Robles were recognized for their service to the nation, San Antonio’s military community and USAA. Gen. Robles served USAA as president and CEO from 2007 until his retirement in 2015. UT System Chancellor Bill McRaven, a retired U.S. Navy four-star admiral, and his wife, Georgeann, are honorary chairs of the gala.
“The Robles Chair will be dedicated in perpetuity to supporting the Health Science Center as we lead innovative medical research, health education and clinical care that enhances and nurtures military collaborations,” Dr. Henrich said. “One of our top priorities is to improve the health and well-being of military personnel and veterans throughout our community, state and nation.”
A video illustrated the impact of the partnership of the Health Science Center and military medicine on San Antonio. In this video, community leader Martin Wender, who sustained burns at his home in an accident, thanks providers at the U.S. Army Institute for Surgical Research (ISR), University Hospital and the Health Science Center for his recovery.
The Health Science Center has enjoyed a close relationship with the military for decades. In 2014, the Health Science Center formalized this collaboration by establishing the Military Health Institute under the leadership of Byron C. Hepburn, M.D., Maj. Gen. (USAF Ret.), founding director of the institute and associate vice president of the Health Science Center.
According to its vision statement, the Military Health Institute will be the nation’s leader in health-related academic collaborations that improve the health and resiliency of the nation’s military service members, veterans and their families.
Gen. Robles was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1966 and served in multiple command and staff positions, including active-duty posts in Korea, Vietnam and Germany and in Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. He retired in 1994 and joined USAA that year, serving as chief financial officer and controller and in other executive administrative positions.