April 29, 2019 | (10) Comments

For the past couple of years, I have shared my leadership philosophy with you here on the blog through my Leadership Maxims series. Writing this series has been so enjoyable because it allows me to spotlight some truly remarkable employees who serve and lead in ways that make our organization better every single day.

Your stories of teamwork, leadership and dedication bring to life the maxims I wrote years ago based on my own experiences as a leader. These stories serve as reminders that leadership is a daily pursuit that empowers and inspires innovation.

I want to continue hearing and sharing your stories about your leadership journeys, but as I prepare for this year’s Leadership Maxims blog series, I’d like to do it a little differently. This year, I’m going to select five guest bloggers to share how the Leadership Maxims apply to them and their roles at Texas Children’s.

This will be the first time I’ve featured guest bloggers and I’m really excited! I’m looking forward to sharing this space with you and reading your thoughts on leadership.

How to submit a blog post for consideration

Choose one of Mark Wallace’s first five Leadership Maxims:

  1. Leadership always influences or determines outcomes – not some of the time, but all of the time.
  2. Leadership applies to everyone.
  3. We lead in our professional lives and in our personal lives.
  4. We all should have our personal definition of leadership.
  5. The key characteristics to look for when selecting people are a winning attitude and a strong work ethic.

If you’d like a refresher on Mr. Wallace’s Leadership Maxims before writing your submission, watch his short Maxims videos here on the blog.

Write about how that maxim applies to you and your job at Texas Children’s. Please keep your stories between 350 and 500 words.

 Please email your submissions to Texas Children’s News at connectnews@texaschildrens.org.


April 9, 2019 | (35) Comments

I remember the moment like it was yesterday. When I was 10-years-old, my parents, brother, sister and I hit the road on a warm summer day and drove from our home in Oklahoma City to Anaheim, California. Throughout the two-day drive, I dreamed and fantasized about this magical place called Disneyland that I had only seen on TV. What would it look like in person? Would I enjoy the rides? Is it really the happiest place on Earth?

Our excitement was palpable as my dad drove up to the park. I was just about to jump out of my skin when we descended upon the iconic gates of the Magic Kingdom. I stood at the entrance with my family in awe and remember thinking this was the most wonderful thing that had ever happened to me. I was so happy!

My experience walking through the Magic Kingdom was even better than I imagined. The park’s grounds were spotless, the cast members were impeccably dressed and so welcoming, and Disney’s attention to every single detail was unmatched. The rides were amazing, but none compared to “It’s a Small World.”

My brother, sister and I rode it countless times … we couldn’t get enough! Every time we were in the boat gliding through the iconic scenes, I noticed something different. But, what I noticed every time and thought was special, even at a young age, was the depiction of all of the different characters from various backgrounds, all with different gifts and attributes, who were all part of one awesome world. It was so beautiful!

Now, more than 50 years later, my childhood memories are coming to life at Texas Children’s as we gear up for the launch of the Disney Team of Heroes pilot on April 17. I am instantly reminded of the feeling I got when I was 10 years old, as I recognize how special it is that we are all from different backgrounds, all with different gifts, and all an integral part of our one amazing team.

The eye-catching murals you see going up around the hospital were designed by an incredibly talented artist named Joey Chou. If you look closely, you’ll recognize the design and color schemes of his work, inspired by my favorite ride and its artist, Mary Blair. It feels like my first trip to Disneyland has come full circle.

I am immensely proud Texas Children’s was chosen as Disney’s first partner in this exciting initiative. The company’s CEO, Bob Iger, recognized what I have always known to be true – Texas Children’s is not only the preeminent place for children to receive care, but our commitment to the patient family experience is incomparable. His focus is to bring the best of Disney’s storytelling and experiences to Texas Children’s in a way that delivers comfort and inspiration to our patients and their families. I know that by working together on this pilot, we will drive our expansion efforts across our system and in other children’s hospitals across the globe as well.

Like me, many of you have similar stories and memories about your visits to a Disney park and are thrilled to watch this partnership come to fruition. My hope is that even though some of our patients and families cannot experience an actual Disney park, we will be able to bring some of the Disney magic to them – and to all of you – here at Texas Children’s.

It really is a small world, after all.

Click here to read an FAQ about our partnership with Disney.



April 1, 2019 | (0) Comments

At Texas Children’s, time goes by fast. We move at a quick pace because of the nature of our jobs and our never-ending drive to carry out our mission of creating a healthier future for children and women.

As a result, we often forget to pause and reflect on what we have done to help those who seek our care. Before you know it another year has passed and with it, a host of accomplishments, victories and steps forward.

Fortunately, Texas Children’s produces an annual report each year spotlighting the breadth, depth and growth of our organization. The online report — full of compelling stories, videos and graphics about our patients, staff, clinical programs and expanding facilities — reaches tens of thousands of people across the globe.

I am happy to announce that the 2018 Texas Children’s Annual Report went live this week and is a dynamic representation of our growth and success last year. Titled “We’ve never been better,” this year’s website illustrates in a special section the opening of the Lester and Sue Smith Legacy Tower — our new home for heart, intensive care and surgery. With more than 640,000 square feet of space, Smith Legacy Tower will help us continue to serve our patients and their families, particularly those who are critically ill and have complex medical needs.

Each section of the Annual Report website — News, Notes and Numbers — gives readers an opportunity to experience how and why Texas Children’s health care system continues to set records organization wide. I’ve shared a few of these incredible accomplishments in a video so you can see some of our 2018 highlights.

For me, the Annual Report is a purposeful walk down memory lane that never fails to inspire me with renewed vigor and dedication to our mission. It’s also an opportunity to share the progress Texas Children’s has made over the course of a year with those who might need our care, want to collaborate with us or be part of our team.

Read all about it at texaschildrensannualreport.org. Share the link to the online report with friends and colleagues, and encourage them to do the same.

As you will see, 2018 was a remarkable year for Texas Children’s. We’ve truly never been better!