Texas Children’s announces naming of Legacy Tower by Lester and Sue Smith

Press Release

HOUSTON – (Oct. 1, 2018) – Texas Children’s Hospital is proud to announce the naming of its latest expansion project – the Lester and Sue Smith Legacy Tower. The Smiths, who have dedicated their private wealth for public good, generously pledged $50 million to Texas Children’s to support Legacy Tower, the hospital’s new home for heart, intensive care and surgery, as well as to support patient care and research at Texas Children’s Cancer Center. The gift was announced at The Legacy of Motown Gala on Sept. 29, which raised more than $83 million and is now the highest-grossing fundraising gala in Texas. The event was underwritten by The Lester & Sue Smith Foundation whose commitment to match funds raised inspired others to give generously.  

“I am incredibly grateful to Lester and Sue for this transformational gift,” said Mark A. Wallace, president & CEO of Texas Children’s. “Their unwavering commitment to our patients and families over the years is unmatched, and this is another shining example of their extraordinary generosity and compassionate care for others.”

Drawing from a place of gratitude for the life-saving care Lester received during his battles with cancer, the dynamic couple has dedicated more than $150 million to support research at numerous institutions including Texas Children’s, Baylor College of Medicine and Harris Health System. Following the Disco Legends event in 2012, which benefitted Texas Children’s Cancer Center, the clinic was named in their honor as the Lester and Sue Smith Clinic. 
“Giving to others is our guiding philosophy,” said Lester and Sue Smith. “There is nothing more precious than a child, and we hope this gift will help support the incomparable patient care for which the hospital is known. It is truly our honor to leave a legacy of support for generations to come at Texas Children’s.” 

Legacy Tower adds 640,000-square-feet to Texas Children’s sprawling Texas Medical Center campus. In May, the first phase of the tower opened with six technologically-advanced operating rooms for neurosurgery, orthopedics, plastic surgery, transplant and pediatric surgery – one with intraoperative MRI – and 84 ICU beds, including dedicated surgical, neurological and transitional ICU rooms. The second phase of Legacy Tower opened last week and serves as the new home for Texas Children’s Heart Center®, ranked No. 1 nationally in pediatric cardiology and heart surgery by U.S. News & World Report. This milestone will help Texas Children’s continue to provide the highest-quality care possible to patients and families, particularly those children who are critically-ill. To learn more visit legacytower.org

Texas Children’s Cancer Center is consistently ranked as one of the best cancer programs in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. It is the largest pediatric cancer center in the nation and the destination for children from more than 35 states and 26 countries to receive individualized, state-of-the-art cancer care. Additionally, more than 91,000 outpatient visits occur in the Lester and Sue Smith Clinic each year. To learn more visit texaschildrens.org/cancer.


About Texas Children’s Hospital

Texas Children’s Hospital, a not-for-profit health care organization, is committed to creating a healthier future for children and women throughout the global community by leading in patient care, education and research. Consistently ranked as the best children’s hospital in Texas, and among the top in the nation, Texas Children’s has garnered widespread recognition for its expertise and breakthroughs in pediatric and women’s health. The hospital includes the Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute; the Feigin Tower for pediatric research; Texas Children’s Pavilion for Women, a comprehensive obstetrics/gynecology facility focusing on high-risk births; Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus, a community hospital in suburban West Houston; and Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands, the first hospital devoted to children’s care for communities north of Houston. The organization also created Texas Children’s Health Plan, the nation’s first HMO for children; Texas Children’s Pediatrics, the largest pediatric primary care network in the country; Texas Children’s Urgent Care clinics that specialize in after-hours care tailored specifically for children; and a global health program that’s channeling care to children and women all over the world. Texas Children’s Hospital is affiliated with Baylor College of Medicine. For more information, go to www.texaschildrens.org. Get the latest news by visiting the online newsroom and Twitter at twitter.com/texaschildrens.

About Lester and Sue Smith

In a city known for pioneers in energy, medicine, finance and philanthropy, one couple stands out—Sue and Lester Smith who have dedicated their private wealth for the public good. Their extraordinary generosity and compassionate care for others is motivated by their personal motto that “to whom much is given, much is expected.” Drawing from a place of gratitude for the life-saving care Lester received during his battles with cancer and lung disease, the couple has dedicated over $150 million to support medical research at numerous institutions including Texas Children’s Hospital, Baylor College of Medicine and Harris Health System. 
In addition to medical research, the Smiths have enriched the arts, education, social services and humanitarian causes in our community while raising the bar on giving with passion and creativity. The dynamic couple has spearheaded the most highly successful galas in our city’s history, and furthered the mission of dozens of nonprofits leaving a legacy of support for generations to come.