Academic journal article The Hastings Center Report

At the Center

Academic journal article The Hastings Center Report

At the Center

Article excerpt

Deciding What's Important. I write with the perspective of a newcomer, having just arrived in January. I came as the Center began its thirtieth year of existence and its second year in a new home, and as it anticipated the arrival of its third president. I am its second vice president for development. One thing I've noticed is that staff members have become accustomed to change.

Thirty years ago, Dan Callahan and Will Gaylin had no good reason to believe their creation would survive at all, let alone change. Deciding to explore the ethical dimensions of biomedical progress in 1969 was more about pursuing passions than setting career goals. But they identified a need, and so created a demand for their work. The need continues to grow at a rate accelerating with the advances of science.

When I made a transition from health care development to health care administration, I learned to rely on The Hastings Center as a resource and guide. The Center's perspectives, especially on end-of-life issues, informed and reassured my particular clients, the institutionalized elderly, and their caregivers, as well as me. My move back into development work, and on behalf of this organization, was a delightful, double turn of good fortune.

I have been involved in the development of not-for-profits for nearly twenty years, including organizations dealing with overseas hunger relief, social services for the blind, and health care. …

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