Businesswoman glad she had first-rate professionals on her side
When Margaret Giltinan was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2004, an entire team of healthcare professionals swung into action to help her. Having all her doctors – including the surgeon, oncologist and radiologist – assigned to her from day one made all the difference, she says.
From the start, the care she received revolved around her needs as a patient. “I didn’t have to wander all over the hospital while in trauma,” she explains. “They had the doctors come to me.” This “really wonderful team approach” continued throughout her treatment and recovery, and it sold her on Cleveland Clinic, she says. “I felt so well taken care of and supported.”
The experience inspired her to help other women facing the same diagnosis. In late 2007, she established The Margaret Rose Giltinan Fund for Innovations in Breast Cancer, which was designated to support the work of her surgeon, Joseph Crowe, MD, who holds the Lula Zapis Endowed Chair to Support Breast Cancer Research. Ms. Giltinan also joined the Leadership Board of the OB/GYN & Women’s Health Institute and, in mid-2008, became its chairwoman. When she was offered the leadership role, she accepted wholeheartedly, she says. “I had great enthusiasm because I love the Cleveland Clinic.”
She says the board recently stepped up to fill a need identified by Tommaso Falcone, MD, Chairman of the institute. He wanted to buy a urodynamic machine for patients with urinary tract problems so that they wouldn’t have to go to another building for testing, but the institute didn’t have the capital funds to cover the cost. “In February, I took it to the board,” Ms. Giltinan says. “In June, we got $56,000 in. We really were able to surprise Dr. Falcone. He did not know we were doing this.”
It was a gratifying moment. “I was so proud of my board members,” she continues. “We had very, very high participation.”
Ms. Giltinan sees “a very nice overlap” between the work she does on the board and her career. She is Chairman and CEO of Gebauer Company, which manufactures and distributes prescription and over-the-counter medical devices. In addition to the healthcare connection, the two organizations have deep roots in the area.
“Cleveland Clinic is a real Cleveland institution,” she says. “My company is a 100-year-old Cleveland company. And I’m helping Cleveland Clinic.”
The connection has been “just fabulous for me,” she says. “I think it’s a wonderful place – not just because they saved my life but the way they did it, by being supportive and nurturing.”
To make a gift supporting the OB/GYN & Women’s Health Institute or any area of Cleveland Clinic, visit our secure online giving site, or call Institutional Relations and Development at 216.444.1245 or toll-free at 800.223.2273, ext. 41245.