Speaking Up

Earlier this month, UW Medicine held a fundraising event for several hundred people. These events aren’t news in and of themselves, of course; it’s the cause that matters. In this case, that cause was mental health — more specifically, the creation of the UW Medicine Behavioral Health Institute at Harborview.

Jürgen Unützer, our chair of psychiatry, notes that there is no health without mental health. Yet, as a society, we still find it hard to talk about mental illness. At the event and in this magazine — which highlights the courageous story of one of our own employees, Lisa Lovejoy — we are opening the discussion and stand ready for you to join us.

Sadly, this summer brought something my colleagues and I were not ready for: the sudden death on Aug. 1 of one of UW Medicine’s greatest friends and advocates, Jeff Brotman. He was an intelligent and dynamic man, perhaps best known for co-founding Costco and for his family’s tremendous generosity to our community.

Jeff always did the right thing. He knew his own mind, he spoke up, and his tenacity and energy made UW Medicine a better organization. We will miss him, we will remember him, and we will follow his example.


Paul G. Ramsey, M.D.
CEO, UW Medicine