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Johns Hopkins Medicine
Office of Corporate Communications
Media Contact: Ken Frager 
October 5, 2004


When Louis and Nancy Grasmick announced their $1 million gift to the new Johns Hopkins Heart Institute they did so knowing that their gift was going to support something they truly believed in…and something that they truly believed had already impacted their lives.

Louis Grasmick, is founder and CEO of Louis J. Grasmick Lumber Company, Inc. Nancy is Superintendent of Schools for the State of Maryland. “This gift is a small way of repaying our debt to Johns Hopkins Medicine and the wonderful caregivers there,” they said. According to Nancy, “Twenty seven years ago, some of these same people saved Lou’s life when they performed the first of his two bypass operations at Hopkins. Knowing that our gift can make a difference in the lives of others, now and in the future, means so much to us.”

The Grasmicks have been faithful supporters of cardiovascular services at Johns Hopkins Medicine for many years. Lou served on the Cardiovascular Advisory Council, as chair of the Dana and Albert “Cubby” Broccoli Center for Aortic Diseases and as president of the Johns Hopkins Cardiac Alumni Club. “For years I have been spreading the word that one of the best kept medical secrets in Maryland is the coronary care expertise that Johns Hopkins offers,” says Lou, a long-time Baltimore resident. “I have directed dozens of patients to this world-class institution, with very positive outcomes, and now I am pleased to be able to make a mark with our financial gift. And I am very pleased to say that this is just the beginning of what Nancy and I hope to do for Johns Hopkins Medicine.”

Lou recently agreed to chair the Capital Campaign for the Johns Hopkins Heart Institute. Arthur B. Modell, former majority owner of the Baltimore Ravens, and Edward J. “Ned” Kelly, president and CEO of Mercantile Bank in Baltimore, also agreed to take on senior leadership roles with the Heart Institute, Modell as chair and Kelly as vice-chair.

 “We’re immensely pleased that this outstanding team of community visionaries—with Mr. Grasmick, Mr. Modell, and Mr. Kelly, along with the other members of the Heart Institute Board of Governors—has agreed to take on this new challenge,” says Dr. Edward Miller, Dean of the Medical Faculty and Chief Executive Officer, Johns Hopkins Medicine. “With their support and leadership our clinicians and faculty can safely reach for greater achievements.”

The Heart Institute, key to the future of the Johns Hopkins East Baltimore medical campus master plan, will be located in the new Cardiovascular and Critical Care towers. The new towers are estimated to cost more than $300 million by the time they are completed in 2008, with more than $100 million of that total expected to come from philanthropic support.

“Hopkins has been putting together the entire spectrum of specialists involved in heart care, with the experience to accelerate the translation of new discoveries to improve patient care,” said Grasmick. “The brilliant staff that has been assembled – and the patients they treat – need and deserve better facilities and we are committed to providing them. It is incumbent on our community leaders, and elected officials who have been touched by this outstanding team and organization, to ensure that these plans become reality.” 

Key faculty involved with the Institute include Cardiac Surgeon in Charge William A. Baumgartner, M.D., the Division of Cardiology’s Chief, Eduardo Marbán, M.D., Ph.D., and Clinical Chief, Richard Lange, M.D.,  Department of Medicine Director Myron Weisfeldt, M.D., and Department of Surgery Director Julie Freischlag, M.D.

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