Donor Spotlight: Lerner Humanitarian Award Honors Distinguished Physician

The Alfred and Norma Lerner Humanitarian Award honors a Cleveland Clinic physician who, in all personal and professional qualities, exemplifies the ethos of Cleveland Clinic and has earned its greatest measure of gratitude and esteem.

James B. Young, MD (center), accepts the Alfred and Norma Lerner Humanitarian Award from Mrs. Lerner and Toby Cosgrove, MD, CEO and President of Cleveland Clinic, at the 1921 Society dinner
on Sept. 26, 2017

This year’s recipient is James B. Young, MD, who is recognized for his 22 years of compassionate service as a cross-departmental physician leader and educator, along with his contributions to the cardiology subspecialty of heart failure and transplant medicine.

In a nod to the Cleveland Indians’ record-breaking 2017 season, Toby Cosgrove, MD, CEO and President of Cleveland Clinic, said, “If there ever was a utility infielder, this is the man.” Utility infielders have the ability to play multiple positions on a team, a fitting comparison to the many roles Dr. Young fulfills at Cleveland Clinic.

Dr. Young is Professor of Medicine and Executive Dean of Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine (CCLCM) and Chair of the Endocrinology & Metabolism Institute. As Executive Dean of CCLCM, he personally oversees the education of a select number of highly qualified individuals seeking to become physician investigators for the advancement of biomedical research and clinical practice. Since accepting its first class of students in 2004, the college has gained greater renown under Dr. Young’s leadership.

He also holds a joint appointment in Cleveland Clinic’s Multi-Organ Transplant Center, serves as a Physician Director for the Philanthropy Institute and is a Medical Director of the George M. and Linda H. Kaufman Center for Heart Failure, which he co-created with surgical colleague Patrick McCarthy, MD, in 1997.

Dr. Young holds The George M. and Linda H. Kaufman Endowed Chair, which provides resources for clinical research, patient care and caregiver training in heart failure and coronary disease. Internationally renowned for his work as a heart failure and transplant cardiologist, he is a Diplomat of the American Boards of Internal Medicine, Cardiology, and Advanced Heart Failure and Cardiac Transplantation. He has participated in more than 150 clinical trials as an investigator, and published almost 700 manuscripts and textbooks.

A skilled mentor, educator, researcher and engaging orator of Cleveland Clinic’s rich history, Dr. Young truly embodies the ideals of a compassionate physician-scientist.

During his acceptance remarks, Dr. Young said he was drawn to Cleveland Clinic because of its mantra of “Patients First.” He thanked his team and his family, saying he couldn’t have accomplished so much without their support.

The Alfred and Norma Lerner Humanitarian Award was established in 2002 as a testament to Mr. and Mrs. Lerner’s unparalleled generosity, kindness and service. It is presented biennially at the induction ceremonies of the 1921 Society, which honors the extraordinary benevolence of donors who have given $1 million or more. Recipients of the Lerner Humanitarian Award personify the highest values of the medical profession, embodying peerless expertise, wise mentorship and deep personal commitment to the mission of Cleveland Clinic.