Half century of battling healthcare disparities in KC community highlighted at Swope Health 50th Anniversary Gala.
Community leaders, elected officials, public health and education CEOs gathered at the Intercontinental Hotel on Saturday, November 16, to celebrate Swope Health’s remarkable achievements over the last 50 years.
Swope Health Founder – E. Frank Ellis
Swope Health founder, E. Frank Ellis, was honored for his role in providing quality healthcare to Kansas City’s neediest citizens and his efforts to revitalize communities on the east side. He shared the inspiring story of a small group of passionate, dedicated individuals who opened a clinic in the basement of Metropolitan Missionary Baptist Church in 1969. This effort birthed Swope Health, Swope Community Builders and the Applied Urban Research Institute – organizations that forged a greater movement to address the larger issues of poverty, urban decay, and a lack of education and career opportunities in neglected Kansas City communities.
Keynote Speaker – Dr. Peter Salgo
The evening’s keynote speaker was Dr. Peter Salgo, medical correspondent, professor, practicing physician, and one of the nation’s most respected healthcare futurists. In his remarks, he cautioned that every effort must be made to ensure that healthcare in the future – all the remarkable technologies and cures yet to come – are made accessible to everyone and not just the few who can afford them. This message resonated deeply with the more than 300 guests at the event, many of whom are dedicated to providing accessible, comprehensive healthcare to all citizens, regardless of socio-economic status.
Other speakers at the event included Dr. Harry E. Wilkins III, Chairman of the Swope Health Board of Directors, and Jeron Ravin, J.D., President and CEO of Swope Health.
Cynthia Newsome, KSHB Anchor and Reporter, served as master of ceremonies and Rev. Ruthe Workcuff, Elder of Victory Temple Christian Life Center and a Swope Health employee for 30 years, delivered the invocation.
Dr. Harry E. Wilkins III (left) and Jeron Ravin, J.D., (right) presented E. Frank Ellis
with a plaque that features a photo of the Swope Health building on Blue Parkway.
Jeron Ravin, J.D., President and CEO of Swope Health
Dr. Peter Salgo cautioned the audience of more than 300 that the battle against
healthcare disparities in America will continue into the future.