Katie Goodfellow and Darren Beals didn’t grow up understanding the importance of philanthropy. The couple, who have been married 17 years, both came from families of modest means. Giving meant small donations to meaningful causes. But education took Darren and Katie far; advanced degrees led to rewarding careers and a measure of financial success beyond their expectations. Through her work in development at Harvard Medical School, Katie crossed paths with brilliant scientists and met prominent donors able to fund leading-edge research. Deeply impressed, she remembers thinking, “If I had the money I’d write a check right now.”
Well, in 2012 Darren and Katie did indeed write that check, in support of patient focused research at Tufts Medical Center’s renowned CardioVascular Center (CVC).
Why cardiac research? And why Tufts Medical Center? For Katie and Darren, the answers are related. Darren’s uncle received outstanding care in the stroke unit a few years back. A decade earlier, Katie’s mother had successful heart valve replacement surgery at the CVC to repair a congenital heart defect. With each experience, the couple was impressed by the clinical care and the culture at Tufts Medical Center. “Tufts Medical Center is a world-class academic medical center with the warmth of a local hospital,” says Katie. “There’s a sense of genuine kindness here that makes it very special.”
With heart disease touching both families and a keen sense of admiration for Tufts Medical Center, Darren and Katie pledged $100,000 over four years to the Beals Goodfellow Fund, created under the auspices of the Herbert J. Levine Foundation for Cardiovascular Clinical Research. The Fund supports the Beals Goodfellow Research Award, granted to a member of the cardiovascular faculty whose research is directed at finding cures and improving patient outcomes. “We’re humbled that our gift can have an almost immediate impact on cardiac research and care,” Darren affirms. “Medicine is changing at such a dramatic pace, and to support the people who are leading that change is very gratifying.”
The Herbert J. Levine Foundation was founded in 2001 to honor the long-time Chief of the Cardiology Division at Tufts Medical Center. The Foundation provides critical training grants for junior faculty and fellows to conduct promising basic, translational and clinical research. The Beals Goodfellow Award has found an ideal home there, enabling the Foundation to enhance clinical research support and provide increased teaching and training opportunities. Thanks to the power of philanthropy, Tufts Medical Center can honor Dr. Levine’s legacy and advance the academic mission of cardiology at the hospital.