It was a very nice thank you for philanthropists Lester and Sue Smith when Harris Health System (formerly the Harris County Hospital District) briefly opened the doors of the state-of-the-art Smith Clinic for a major donor tour. That was followed by an intimate dinner, hosted by Ginni and Richard Mithoff, saluting the Smith's continuing generosity.
The Smiths made the lead gift of $15 million for the clinic that officially opens Oct. 1. Joining them in the tour of the new facility were other donors including representatives of the Atwell Family Foundation and the Susan B. Komen Foundation. A surprise for the Smiths was unveiling of an 8-foot high pink ribbon statue honoring the couple. The whimsical work, titled "I Will Survive" (Lester's theme song) was commissioned from artist Hanh Tran.
A surprise for the Smiths was unveiling of an 8-foot high pink ribbon statue honoring the couple.
Harris County Judge Ed Emmett and Kitch Taub addressed the gathering that included Harris Health System head Stephen DonCarlos, the Mithoffs, Melinda Muse, Amanda Callaway, Lauren Frazier and Gwen Emmett.
A short time later, the Mithoffs pulled out all the stops in their River Oaks home for dinner, catered by A Fare Extraordinaire, for a small group applauding the Smiths for their gift (the largest single private donation) to the system.
Toasting the completion of the two-year project were Dr. Paul Klotman, Jeanie Kilroy, Harriet and Truett Latimer, Ellie and Jack Sweeney, Carolyn and Platt Davis, Susie and Joe Dilg, Patricia and David Lopez, Ruth and John Ransom and Debbie and Vidal Martinez.