Robert and Janice McNair Foundation names Dr. Emerson Perin a McNair Scholar at Texas Heart Institute

Houston, Texas (August 21, 2013)  – Dr. Emerson Perin, director of the Texas Heart Institute (THI) Stem Cell Center and of Clinical Research for Cardiovascular Medicine, has been named a McNair Scholar at THI. 

The Robert and Janice McNair Foundation established the McNair Medical Institute and the McNair Scholars Program to recognize and support the work of outstanding scientists and physicians. 

"Dr. Perin's outstanding work as a cardiovascular interventionist who uses adult stem cells in the treatment of cardiovascular disease holds great promise for the future of medicine," said Dr. Charles R. Neblett, Director, McNair Medical Institute. "Dr. Perin joins an elite group of scientists and intellectual leaders who are committed to excellence and medical progress." 

"We are proud of this honor for Dr. Perin, a dedicated and distinguished physician/scientist, and are very grateful for the robust and farsighted support of the McNairs and their Foundation. They are true partners in building a healthier world for everyone," added Dr. James T. Willerson, THI's president and medical director. 

The Robert and Janice McNair Foundation is a private foundation established in 1988. Based in Houston, Texas, the Foundation has made grants to a wide variety of charitable organizations and programs.  In 2007, the focus changed to medical research and supporting McNair Scholars. The McNair Scholars began when the McNairs established undergraduate scholarship programs at their alma maters, the University of South Carolina and Columbia College in South Carolina. The McNairs, founders of the Houston Texans football team, initially identified four areas of focus for the first McNair Scholars – breast cancer, diabetes, pancreatic cancer and neurosciences.   

In October 2008, the Foundation granted $2.5 million to the Texas Heart Institute to create the McNair Scholars Program and named Dr. Edward T.H. Yeh, a member of THI professional staff and chairman of  The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center's Cardiology Department, as the first THI McNair Scholar.