Excellence is Perishable: Keep It Alive

Rowland K. (Robin) Robinson

An Interview with Rowland K. Robinson,
President of the Baylor Health Care System Foundation

Rowland K. (Robin) Robinson has long been known as a leader in the Dallas business community. For many years he was a bank executive. At one point, he was president of Bank of America’s operations in Dallas. Additionally, he has sat on many a board influencing civic and community activities in the North Texas region. Now his role in our well-being is even more literal – as the head of the Foundation that supports the Baylor Health Care System. In its last fiscal year, the Foundation had a record-setting year, raising more than $36 million for Baylor initiatives. Here, the individual who is leading the team behind that record talks about doing it right, whether it be in the business or nonprofit sectors.

What do you tell people about Baylor Health Care System in the midst of our healthcare crisis?
A great city cannot exist without excellent health care. Our supporters know this. With all the current and future changes in health care, philanthropy will have an even greater role in providing care to our community. Excellence is perishable; maintaining or enhancing the of quality care our community is used to will require innovation and investment. We need to constantly reinvest to ensure the best in facilities, technology, people and equipment for the citizens of this community.

You’ve now worked in both the business and nonprofit sectors, and excellence is hard to maintain in both. What would you share with business and community leaders about keeping it alive?
Passion, a vision, leadership, constructive impatience and a heart for the subject are critical to any endeavor. Dallas is lucky to have women and men who possess these qualities, both in business and the nonprofit sectors.

As a former bank executive, what has been the biggest surprise about making the shift to your role fundraising for Baylor?
As a banker for over 26 years, I was exposed to literally thousands of different businesses. I met the companies’ management, discussed their business plans and walked their facilities. Health care is the most complex industry that I have ever been exposed to. Times ten!

What would you like to tell readers about the Baylor Health Care System Foundation that most people don’t know? 
Baylor has over 312 patient access points throughout twelve counties in north Texas. This includes 30 hospitals. Most people are aware of Baylor but have no idea that our footprint is this large. While charitable giving in the United States has taken a hit amid a slow economic recovery, Baylor Health Care System Foundation has continued to generate major support from philanthropists who understand the importance of outstanding health care resources for all our citizens. The Foundation’s consistent track record of grants during the last several years has placed it in the top 8% of comparable nationwide health care system foundations.

For more information, visit give.baylorhealth.com.

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