Kaplan invests in Farmer's leadership and vision
Robert Kaplan knows a thing or two about what constitutes an effective leader. In his recent book, "What to Ask the Person in the Mirror: Critical Questions for Becoming a More Effective Leader and Reaching Your Potential," the Harvard Business School professor of management practice and senior associate dean for external relations says that great leadership is about having the courage to ask critical questions.
When he met Kolokotrones University Professor Paul Farmer, MD ’90, PhD ’90, chair of the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at HMS, chief of the Division of Global Health Equity at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and co-founder of Partners In Health, he saw a leader whose passion was contagious.
"Paul has a vision for what could be. He doesn't get bogged down in the constraints and myriad reasons why things can't be done—he finds a way," says Kaplan.
Inspired by Farmer's courage, passion, and enormous energy, Kaplan has given $1 million to support the Chair's Fund in Global Health Delivery at HMS. This gift will support the department in advancing the understanding of both the burden of disease and the challenges of delivering services to prevent and treat unnecessary suffering.
"This gift will facilitate the integration of research and teaching to improve global health delivery, making an impact on the lives and health of poor people around the world," says Farmer. "My entire team is grateful to Rob for giving his time, expertise, and resources to advance this critical work."
Humbling Experience in Haiti
Kaplan was first introduced to Farmer in the fall of 2011, when he was asked to teach leadership classes to Farmer's management teams in Boston and Haiti. Kaplan jumped at the chance to help because he was impressed with the incredible progress being made around the world by the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine.
Humbled by the experience, Kaplan says he now better understands the enormity of the challenge of improving health in Haiti and other under-developed countries. Facilities, lack of roads and other infrastructure, governmental obstacles, and the overall economic challenges make this effort incredibly difficult.
"Paul has built a team that shares his passion and dedication. They care about making changes, improving the lives of citizens, and finding ways to overcome obstacles and get the job done. If donors could see what I see, they would be blown away by the effort Paul and his colleagues are leading."
To create and nurture a diverse community
of the best people committed to leadership in alleviating human suffering caused by disease