On September 7th, nearly 500 ecosystem and city leaders, innovators, students, and community members gathered to recognize the lifelong and innovative achievements of Dr. William Henrich and Dr. Sunil Ahuja. This event had the Who’s Who in the San Antonio biomedical ecosystem with contingents from Austin and guests from across the U.S.
The pre-dinner networking reception was filled with old and new friends connecting over their work, passions, and shared connections.
The program was led by Master of Ceremonies, Steve Spriester from KSAT 12. Heather Hanson, president of BioMedSA, gave an introduction to the healthcare and bioscience ecosystem and the work of BioMedSA, including collaboration with Dallas, Austin, and Houston for ARPA-H, a federal biomedical agency to drive funding for contracts and subcontracts, the Clinical Trial Hub initiative to drive healthcare equity and trial access, and Life Science Career Packets to provide career choices and information for both students and adults. Specifically noted was the generosity of individuals and organizations that offer unwavering support with their time, talents, and resources. Attendees were also welcomed by Mayor Ron Nirenberg and Ted Day, Chairman of BioMedSA and EVP, Strategic Planning & Business Development at University Health.
The Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to the current President of UT Health San Antonio, William L. Henrich, M.D., MACP by Heather Hanson and Ted Day. Adam Hamilton, CEO of Southwest Research Institute, welcomed Dr. Henrich to the stage to receive his award.
The Award for Innovation for Healthcare and Bioscience was presented to Sunil Ahuja, M.D. who serves as Professor and Director of the Center for Personalized Medicine at the South Texas Veterans Health Care System and a professor of medicine; microbiology, immunology and molecular genetics; and biochemistry and structural biology at UT Health San Antonio. Dr. Ahuja was welcomed to the stage by Julianne Flynn, M.D., Executive Director of the South Texas Veterans Health Care System and Dr. Anthony Fauci, former Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. After receiving the award, Dr. Ahuja sat down with Dr. Larry Schlesinger from Texas Biomedical Research Institute for a fireside chat.
With humility and laughter, the honorees shared stories of their influences, experiences, and thoughts on the current and future of the healthcare and bioscience industry in San Antonio. It was a pleasure to celebrate them.