2019 CCAM header

The 52nd Chancellor's Council Annual Meeting & Symposium

Friday, April 26, 2019

Almost 1,200 dedicated supporters of the UT System and the 14 UT institutions gathered in Austin for the 52nd Chancellor's Council Annual Meeting & Symposium. This event provides an occasion to show appreciation to Chancellor’s Council members and share with them the Chancellor’s State of the System address and some of the great initiatives taking place across University of Texas institutions. This year’s event featured UT’s "Great Minds" delving into some of the most prevalent and devastating brain disorders, including dementia, mental illness, stroke and addiction.

Read the printed Chancellor's Council Annual Meeting program.

Chancellor Milliken: State of the System

Chancellor James B. Milliken addressed the challenges UT institutions face in a fast-growing and dynamic Texas, outlining the opportunities to improve lives in the Lone Star state and across the globe.

A video, narrated by UT System Chancellor James B. Milliken, described the challenges facing Texas and the UT System, providing context for his State of the System address.

"I am convinced that the defining challenge of our generation is how well we prepare for the education and health of a much larger Texas. That’s the defining challenge of the UT System, too."

"It won’t be just about being bigger; it will be about doing better. More innovation, more efficiency, more entrepreneurship, much more collaboration. And it plays to our strengths; the pillars of strength of the UT System — education, research and health care."

—Chancellor James B. Milliken

 Read the full State of the System address. 

Watch this video to see how the 14 University of Texas institutions are educating and caring for the people of Texas, and propelling the state toward greatness.

The Symposium

The theme of the Annual Symposium was “Great Minds” and featured two panels that included some of the great minds from across UT institutions who are working to better understand and more effectively diagnose, prevent and treat the disorders of the brain.

Moderated by William L. Henrich, MD, MACP - President, UT Health San Antonio

Peace of Mind

An estimated 50 million people worldwide are living with dementia and nearly 6 million Americans—10 percent of all Americans over the age of 65—are living with Alzheimer’s disease, the most common disease linked to dementia. As the population ages, those numbers are predicted to soar. The physical, emotional and financial toll dementia takes is enormous.

An opening video outlined the devastating impact dementia and Alzheimer’s disease have on individuals, families and society. A panel of researchers and physicians from UT institutions discussed what they are doing to help identify, prevent and treat all forms of dementia, and the steps each of us can take to delay or diminish the effects.

Jenny Hsieh, PhD - Director, UTSA Brain Health Consortium, UT San Antonio. Brendan Kelley, MD - Vice Chair for Clinical Affairs, Department of Neurology Neurotherapeutics, UT Southwestern Medical Center. David Paydarfar, MD - Professor and Inaugural Chair of Neurology, Dell Medical School Interim Director, Mulva Clinic for the Neurosciences, UT Austin. Sudha Seshadri, MD - Founding Director, Glenn Biggs Institute for Alzheimer’s and Neurodegenerative Diseases, UT Health San Antonio

Mind Over Matter

Not so long ago, mental illness was a topic few people discussed. But today there is a new understanding of the biological causes of diseases like depression and bipolar disorder.

As shown in the opening video, mental illness no longer has the stigma or shame that was associated with a diagnosis in the past, but there are still barriers to diagnosis and treatment. A panel of UT experts described their research and treatment of mental illness, as well as efforts to improve the policies and infrastructure that impact the care available.

Octavio N. Martinez, Jr., MD - Executive Director, Hogg Foundation for Mental Health, UT Austin. Jair Soares, MD, PhD - Professor & Chairman and Pat R. Rutherford, Jr. Chair in Psychiatry, UTHealth Science Center-Houston. Stephen M. Strakowski, MD - Associate Vice President, Regional Mental Health and Founding Chair & Professor of Psychiatry, Dell Medical School, UT Austin. Carol A. Tamminga, MD - Professor and Chairman, Department of Psychiatry and Chief of Translational Neuroscience Research, UT Southwestern Medical School.

Pre-Symposium Breakout Sessions

The Great Minds theme was further supported by two pre-symposium sessions offered to individuals who arrived earlier in the day:

Stroke of Genius 

As shown in this video overview, stroke is the fifth leading cause of death and the leading cause of adult disability in the U.S. But 80 percent of all strokes can be prevented and there are now more effective ways to limit neurological damage. A panel of UT neuroscientists and bioengineers described what is being done to help stroke victims survive and thrive, and how to prevent and treat strokes.

Moderator: David L. Callender MD, MBA, FACS - President, UT Medical Branch-Galveston

Mark P. Goldberg, MD- Professor of Neurology and Neurotherapeutics and Associate Vice President, Peter O’Donnell Jr. Brain Institute, UT Southwestern Medical Center. Seth Hays, PhD - Fellow, Eugene McDermott Endowed Professorship and Director of Preclinical Research, Texas Biomedical Device Center, UT Dallas. Louise D. McCullough, MD, PhD - Professor and Chair, Department of Neurology, McGovern Medical School, UTHealth Science Center-Houston.

Addressing Addiction

The opening video explained that addiction is a disease of the brain that causes pain and suffering in many families. A panel representing multiple UT institutions discussed how they are working to better understand, prevent and treat addiction.

Moderator: Giuseppe N. Colasurdo, MD - President, UTHealth Science Center-Houston

Kathryn A. Cunningham, PhD - Vice Chair, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology and Director, Center for Addiction Research, UT Medical Branch-Galveston. Adron Harris, PhD - Professor of Neuroscience Waggoner Center for Alcohol and Addiction Research, UT Austin. Joy Schmitz, PhD - Director, Center for Neurobehavioral Research on Addiction, McGovern Medical School, UTHealth Science Center-Houston.

View the 2019 Chancellor's Council Annual Meeting and Symposium schedule.

Learn more about past Chancellor's Council Annual Meeting and Symposiums.