The 2016 Pittsburgh Heart Ball took place on February 20th at the Pittsburgh Wyndham Grand Hotel. This affair marks the presentation of the Peter J. Safar Pulse of Pittsburgh Award. This year the award was received by McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine faculty member Robert Kormos, MD (pictured with his wife, Mary Anne).
Dr. Kormos is currently a professor with tenure specializing in cardiothoracic surgery at the University of Pittsburgh. He is the director of UPMC’s Artificial Heart Program and co-director of the Heart Transplantation Program. Dr. Kormos has been on the faculty at the University of Pittsburgh since 1987 after completion of fellowships in research and transplant surgery. He is also a staff cardiothoracic surgeon at several UPMC hospitals and Pittsburgh’s Veterans Administration Hospital.
The American Heart Association – Allegheny Division board of directors and the Heart Ball committee created the Pulse of Pittsburgh Award in 2003 to recognize an individual’s leadership in the fight against heart disease and stroke. In 2004, the committee changed the name to the Peter J. Safar Pulse of Pittsburgh Award in honor of the late Peter J. Safar, MD, distinguished professor of resuscitation medicine at the University of Pittsburgh, who also was known as the Father of CPR.
As one of Pittsburgh’s premiere social and fundraising events, the Pittsburgh Heart Ball is the American Heart Association – Allegheny Division’s largest fundraising event. Seventy-five percent of contributions support research, school-site programs, and public and professional education programs in this region. Currently, the American Heart Association is funding 37 research projects totaling more than $8.5 million in the Pittsburgh area. The funding from the Heart Ball directly supports the American Heart Association’s mission of “Building healthier lives, free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke.”
Congratulations, Dr. Kormos!
Illustration: Rebecca Droke, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.