The Frist Humanitarian Awards hold a very dear place in my heart. Initiated in 1971 by my father, Dr. Thomas F. Frist, Sr., the Awards honor employees, volunteers and physicians who personify the values upon which our Company was founded. Each year when I attend the Celebration of Giving ceremony where we recognize the national Frist Humanitarian Award recipi- ents, I am reminded how universal and enduring these values are. These attributes are the glue that binds us together, the common threads that are interwoven throughout the fabric of this great Company of ours. This something special is, as our CEO Richard Bracken likes to call it, “our HCA DNA.”
My dad was many things: husband, father, physician, entrepreneur. He lived the values upon which the Frist Humanitarian Awards, and our Company, are based: caring, compassion, integrity, loyalty, charitable giving and going the extra mile. Dad passed along these values to his children and grandchildren, and he mentored others to live them daily. The same prin- ciples that guided his life are shared among the individuals you will read about inside. Meeting them and learning about the service they give to their fellow men and women deeply moves me. You too will be inspired.
Our Frist Award winners have ranged in age from Charlie Griffin, who, in 2006, was our oldest winner at the age of 100, to the youngest-ever winner, JB Bermudez-Koch, who at 18 was inducted this year. My father would have been so proud to see his legacy being carried on through people like Charlie, JB, and the many other Frist Award recipients.
Many of you might not know that a big part of my dad’s life was his involvement in missionary work. He was founder and member of the board of directors of the Medical Benevolence Foundation for Presbyterian Medical Missionaries, an organization that for decades has given hope and heal- ing to those most in need. How fitting it is, therefore, that we celebrate our annual Hope Fund Campaign winners in this same issue, making this a true Celebration of Giving. Through the Hope Fund, and your charitable giving, hope and healing are extended to our colleagues in need. Since its creation in 2005, the HCA Hope Fund has distributed more than $15 million in badly needed assistance grants to our colleagues all across the country; and it all has been possible because of your generosity, compassion and caring.
My dad believed, as I do, that good people beget good people. Without individuals who care about their fellow human beings, we could not help, heal or give hope. Since we founded HCA in 1968, our Company has grown to more than 200,000 associates. I never thought HCA would be this large, but we have been able to grow, sustain and succeed because of you. Thank you for all you do every day, and thank you for carrying on our culture of caring.
Thomas F. Frist, Jr.