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Old September 16th, 2007, 03:39 AM   #1
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Byrd Alzheimer's Institute has grand opening

Byrd Alzheimer's Institute has grand opening
Saturday, September 15, 2007


The Byrd Alzheimer's Institute is the largest freestanding Alzheimer's facility in the world.

HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY (Bay News 9) -- The Johnnie B. Byrd, Sr. Alzheimer's Center & Research Institute, 4001, E. Fletcher Avenue, Tampa state-of-the-art facility opened its doors to the public Saturday.

Elizabeth Nelson, whose mother has Alzheimer's, attended the opening.

"Over the years, she forgot everybody, how to do everything, how to eat, how to chew," Nelson said. "So, her mind was just totally gone."

Nelson plans to volunteer at the new research center, hoping to learn more about how genes play a role in the disease.

Grover Good, 86, has a personal struggle with Alzheimer's.

"It's my short term memory that bothers me the most," Good said.

Good is doing clinical trials at another facility. He's thinking about transferring to the Byrd Institute.

The institute, which is located on the University of South Florida campus, is trying to create an internship program for medical students.

"I want to be a neurologist or neurosurgeon," said Felecia Blais, USF junior. "It's really interesting to me, so that's why I wanted to come and see what the institute was all about."

In the near future, Alzheimer's patents can come to the institute to get treated.

The Byrd Alzheimer's Institute already offers free memory screenings.

http://www.baynews9.com/content/36/2007/9/15/288075.html?title=Byrd+Alzheimer's+Institute+has+grand+opening
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Old September 18th, 2007, 10:15 PM   #2
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The name should be changed.
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Old September 18th, 2007, 10:36 PM   #3
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Here is a link to the institute's website's media page with renderings and a neat flyover animation of the building.
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Old September 18th, 2007, 10:44 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jasonhouse View Post
The name should be changed.
Why do you say that? It was named after Johnnie B. Byrd, Sr. (don't know about the person too well though).
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Old September 18th, 2007, 11:03 PM   #5
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Right. This is a pork project of Johnnie Byrd Jr, who was the former State House Speaker. There have already been other punitive actions taken, regarding the corruption that built this place... I am at a loss as to why the name remains on the place. It's an embarrassment for what could in time become a significant institution.
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Old September 19th, 2007, 02:20 AM   #6
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Ahhhhhhhhh yes. I forgot about Byrd Jr. Dumb pork.
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Old April 11th, 2008, 01:58 PM   #7
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Storms Fights Byrd-USF Deal

By NICOLA M. WHITE

The Tampa Tribune

Published: April 11, 2008

Updated: 12:17 am

TALLAHASSEE - Proponents say merging the troubled Johnnie B. Byrd Sr. Alzheimer's Center and Research Institute with the University of South Florida would boost the center's research and strengthen its mission.

Sen. Ronda Storms thinks it would do exactly the opposite.

That's why Storms, a Valrico Republican, plans to fight to keep the Byrd center independent. She said Thursday that she will file an amendment that would reverse the merger.

An independent Byrd center "means that that researchers and scientists are setting the policy and setting the research agenda, not university people based on budget decisions," Storms said.

Tampa Sens. Victor Crist, a Republican, and Arthenia Joyner, a Democrat - the senators behind the merger - disagree.

"What we do is create an environment where the institute can flourish somewhat independent but is held accountable by the institution of the university," Crist said. "So the university cannot go in there and dictate what it has to do. It does have to watch to make sure it does it right. The university can't go in there and steal all its money; the university can go in there and make sure it spends it right."

The center is located on the university campus, and university leaders have spoken in favor of combining the two, saying it would also reduce costs for services the university and the center each perform separately.

But former House Speaker Johnnie Byrd Jr., who envisioned the institute and who sits on the board, opposes the move.

The center is named for his late father, who had Alzheimer's.

Protecting the Byrd's independence would keep its mission alive, Storms said.

"I'm concerned about Alzheimer's research. I'm not concerned about protecting a university, not concerned about engaging in political one-upmanship," Storms said.

Reporter Nicola M. White can be reached at (850) 222-8382 or nwhite1@tampatrib.com.

http://www2.tbo.com/content/2008/apr...al/?news-metro
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Old April 11th, 2008, 06:39 PM   #8
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Good thinking Rhonda... let's govern based on your perpetually flawed opinion, screw the facts.

Can we get her forcibly removed from office for being incompetent yet?
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Old April 11th, 2008, 07:04 PM   #9
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I don't think she's going anywhere unfortunately. I want to see her ousted though.

This is yet another reason why the Norman/Storms duo will NOT work.
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Old April 23rd, 2008, 04:59 PM   #10
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Legislators' Fiscal Plans Won't Fund Byrd Center

By CATHERINE DOLINSKI

The Tampa Tribune

Published: April 23, 2008

Updated: 01:11 am

TALLAHASSEE - The Johnnie B. Byrd Sr. Alzheimer's Center & Research Institute will receive no state dollars next fiscal year, House and Senate budget negotiators decided Tuesday - a decision that may demolish a long-planned merger between the Byrd Institute and the University of South Florida.

For months, senators in the Tampa Bay area delegation have worked on a compromise plan to turn the Byrd Institute into an arm of USF.

The planned overhaul is a response to years of controversy over its finances and governance. Until this week, it appeared the House and Senate differed only in the details of the plans they were advancing to add the Byrd Institute to USF. The House began budget negotiations with $3.75 million proposed for the center - $9.75 million less than it received this year - while the Senate was proposing $5 million.

Victor Crist, one of the leaders of Senate negotiations about the Byrd Institute, said he was hoping to boost its earmark to $10 million. But last week, House health care budget chiefs learned they would have to trim an additional $83 million from their budget plan. As part of their response, they proposed eliminating the Byrd Institute's money altogether and skipping the merger with USF.

"If we give them to USF we have to transfer money to USF to do that," said Aaron Bean, R-Fernandina Beach, chief health care budget writer in the House and chairman of the joint health care conference committee with the Senate. "This way we keep it independent. And we've got a whole lot of folks who believe the center is about to turn a corner."

The Byrd Institute has about $15 million in savings, he said, making it possible for it to get along without state help for a year. Byrd officials confirmed a number close to $14 million, $7.5 million of which has been set aside to complete the Byrd Institute's final building phase and $5.4 million of which is an emergency reserve.

Concerns About Merger

Byrd Institute lobbyist Melanie Meyer said the institute's board would rather lose its earmark for one year than join USF under the conditions set in the bill. The Byrd Institute remains concerned about the influence USF would wield over the institute, despite Crist's claim that the bill provides a "firewall."

Durell Peaden, who oversees Senate health care appropriations, announced Tuesday evening that the Senate had agreed with the House to cut the Byrd Institute's funding. The decision is significant but technically not final, because either chamber can revisit their agreements before conferencing ends.

Peaden, R-Crestview, said the merger with USF remains uncertain.

"We'll have to see if they want the center, or want the money," he said, echoing comments made last week on the Senate floor by Ronda Storms, R-Valrico.

Unhappy with elements of the USF merger, Storms had tried unsuccessfully to eliminate the Byrd Institute's funding and leave it as an independent entity, saying that would determine whether USF was "marrying" the institute "for love" or just for its earmark.

"I'm not concerned with the Byrd Center; I'm not concerned with USF," she said Tuesday. "I'm concerned about Alzheimer's research. And I think the best thing for Alzheimer's research is to have independence."

Crist said he had heard from a Byrd Institute representative that former House Speaker Johnnie Byrd, who launched the center, had told House leaders recently that he wanted it left alone this year.

"The status quo is unacceptable," said Crist, R-Tampa. "Zero funding it and leaving it the way it is will not allow it to move forward ... We have got to leave here with something better than what we have, that will allow for adequate oversight, that will allow for adequate accountability."

New Plan Is In Works

Crist added that he and Sen. Arthenia Joyner, D-Tampa, are working on a new plan but would not divulge the details, other than to say he thinks enough time remains in the session to pass it.

Johnnie Byrd did not respond to a request for comment about his role, which Meyer said she could not confirm.

While Crist and Joyner have referred to their merger plan as a compromise or consensus, Meyer said the Byrd Institute never agreed to it. "You can't represent something as a consensus product if all the stakeholders weren't at the table."

If the institute remains independent this session, she said, it will work with USF independently afterward on a plan to join the institutions.

USF lobbyist Kathy Betancourt said it was too early to comment on the budget negotiators' decision to defund the Byrd Institute, insisting that its governance and its money remain in negotiation.

Asked whether USF would accept the Byrd Institute without any funding, she said only that "money has never been the nexus of the discussion."

Reporter Catherine Dolinski can be reached at (850) 222-8382 or cdolinski@tampatrib.com.

http://www2.tbo.com/content/2008/apr...d-byrd-center/

I want to personally thank Aaron Bean, Rhonda Storms, and all the other idiot politicians responsible for killing this plan. They do not deserve to be in office due to their level of corruption and should be removed from their posts ASAP!
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Old May 9th, 2008, 10:18 PM   #11
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Byrd Alzheimer's Center Searches For Money And Scientists

By ADAM EMERSON

The Tampa Tribune

Published: May 8, 2008

TAMPA - Leaders at the Byrd Alzheimer's center, freshly battered from a volatile spring in Tallahassee, didn't wind up with a dollar in state money, and they're planning for the next few years as if they'll receive nothing more.

Members of the institute's board of directors agreed Wednesday to spread the center's $17 million in cash reserves over the next three years while they search for ways to generate more money.

Though he had no specifics, Chief Executive Officer Huntington Potter said the institute must tighten its operations but added that he would invest in hiring scientists who can bring in grant money.

"We'll see what we have to give up," Potter said. "We have to make the greatest use of the assets we already have in place."

The question remains how those assets will be shared with the University of South Florida, home to the Johnnie B. Byrd Sr. Alzheimer's Center & Research Institute.

The center's leaders fought against a merger proposal by USF, forgoing a year of state funding to preserve its independence from the university.

On Tuesday, Potter characterized USF's ambitions as a "hostile takeover" but said he was willing to let "bygones be bygones" and work toward an affiliation with the university.

If USF won't oblige, the Byrd institute will find other affiliates, he said.

USF spokesman Michael Hoad said the university won't shut down talks with the Alzheimer's center, which opened in September 2007. Difficulties will surface, however, if the center opens clinics that compete with USF for patients, Hoad said.

The university argued that its oversight of the Byrd institute would save the state money and enhance the research toward treating Alzheimer's. The institute's board of directors rejected the proposal, but the fight persisted in Tallahassee.

USF's efforts gained traction with senators, who passed a plan to dissolve the institute's board and establish the center within USF. But House leaders, knowing they would have to cut millions in health care money, proposed eliminating the Byrd institute's money altogether and, with the blessing of Byrd officials, killed the merger with USF.

Potter noted that an alliance between USF and an independent health care operation on its campus is nothing new. The H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute is at USF. It is affiliated with the university, but is not a part of it.

Hoad says the two are not the same. USF doesn't compete with Moffitt for patients, and its affiliation is grounded in law. If USF agrees on an affiliation with the Byrd institute, the two would have to work out a business model, he said.

"At what point are we sharing revenues, or are we competing?" Hoad said.

As they prepared to draft their new business plan for the next three years, members of the institute's board considered first building their budget assuming they would get $10 million from the state for 2009-2010. Given the volatile politics of the past few months, however, and the possibility of another budget cut in a weakening economy, they are now assuming they will get no assistance.

That won't stop them from asking the state for money, and the board plans to send a budget request to the state in the coming weeks. Its leaders, though, are searching for business partners who can help generate revenue.

Potter also said he plans to hire four scientists who can head up the institute's various laboratories. He has interviewed seven over the past several months, he said.

"If we don't hire scientists, we're dead," he said.

Reporter Adam Emerson can be reached at (813) 259-8285 or aemerson@tampatrib.com.

http://www2.tbo.com/content/2008/may...-s/?news-metro
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Old June 21st, 2008, 03:14 PM   #12
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Byrd Institute Board Approves Plan To Affiliate With USF

By ADAM EMERSON

The Tampa Tribune

Published: June 21, 2008

Updated: 12:16 am

TAMPA - The struggle over the independence of the Byrd Alzheimer's center eased Friday when the institute's board agreed to affiliate with the University of South Florida.

Directors of the Johnnie B. Byrd Sr. Alzheimer's Center & Research Institute approved a plan to form a separate board of three Byrd and four USF representatives to take over the center's operations.

The plan also would install USF health sciences Vice President Stephen Klasko as the center's chief executive. Klasko would replace the current CEO, Huntington Potter.

The proposal, which is set to be finalized in August, was brought to the center's board of directors Friday by former House Speaker Johnnie B. Byrd Jr., who last spring fought against a legislative attempt to place control of the institute with USF.

How is this different? Byrd said the Legislature considered a proposal that would dissolve the Byrd Institute and put its money in USF's hands. The new agreement keeps the center intact as a nonprofit corporation.

"I don't want to be the tail that tries to wag the dog anymore," Byrd said. "I think we have to acknowledge that we're at USF. If we enter into an affiliation, we will be moving forward together."

Byrd agreed to the terms with Rhea Law, the chairwoman of USF's Board of Trustees. He said he contacted Law about a month ago to work on a plan, not long after the legislative session ended without any state money for the center.

The institute's board in February rejected USF's bid to take control and its leaders gave up a year of state funds to preserve the center's independence.

Since then, however, Byrd said that business consultants warned him that ill will with the university would only hurt the center as it sought private support.

"That, to me, was a showstopper," Byrd told the institute's board Friday.

Different Boards, Different Roles

Under the plan, the institute's current board would take on an advisory and advocacy role. The center's management will fall to Klasko, who has led USF's health sciences division - its medical, nursing and public health schools - since 2004.

"Our goal would be to take this forward and maintain the mission of the Byrd Institute, which is to focus on Alzheimer's research," Klasko told the center's board.

Byrd and Klasko agreed that USF's management would end up saving the institute money by consolidating some services, such as fundraising, lobbying and financial management.

Klasko won't say who he plans to keep at the institute, and he won't say whether Potter will have a role under his management.

"It would not be fair to say either way," Klasko said in an interview. "I'm not going to have the opportunity to make too many wrong decisions. I'll look closely at what's working and what's not working."

Potter told board members that such a wholesale change in management and governance of the institute would be a mistake.

"It will be very surprising to the scientific community if the head of the Byrd Institute is not chosen by an international search for an Alzheimer's expert," Potter said. "It should not be anybody but an Alzheimer's expert."

Klasko is an obstetrician, but holds a master's in business administration. Byrd has long praised Potter's work as a researcher - he's a Harvard-trained scientist - but criticized his efforts as a business manager. He unsuccessfully tried ousting Potter from the leadership post in late 2006.

'Too Much, Too Fast'

The new plan for the Alzheimer's center didn't pass easily. Some board members felt blindsided by the proposal, and wanted Potter to stay on as a research director.

"It's just too much, too fast," said Ruth Tappen, who voted against the plan.

Potter angrily noted some board members knew of the plan before the meeting started, at one point accusing Byrd and USF President Judy Genshaft of drafting the proposal behind the scenes.

Genshaft, who sits on the Alzheimer's center board, denied this. Byrd negotiated only with Rhea Law, Genshaft said, and Klasko was at Friday's meeting at Law's invitation.

Both sides will spend the next couple of months choosing representatives to the new board and wrapping up details to the agreement.

They also will have to figure out how to proceed with a hole in its operating budget.

The Alzheimer's center's board had expected to consider on Friday a business plan for the new fiscal year without any state support. Board members shelved that plan, however, after they approved the affiliation with USF.

They did pass a $7.6 million spending plan drawn mostly from reserves. The budget includes money for new scientists. Potter has made offers to four.

With new management, however, Potter says he will consult with Klasko before hiring them.

Reporter Adam Emerson can be reached at (813) 259-8285 or aemerson@tampatrib.com.

http://www2.tbo.com/content/2008/jun...-to-affiliate/
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Old June 22nd, 2008, 05:37 PM   #13
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Whoops, lost another one Rhonda. lol
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Old August 27th, 2008, 09:57 PM   #14
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USF medical school dean named CEO of Byrd's Alzheimer's Center
By Lisa Greene, Times Staff Writer
In print: Saturday, August 23, 2008


Dr. Stephen Klasko wants to expand the Byrd Center.

TAMPA — The Johnnie B. Byrd Alzheimer's Center & Research Institute has a new boss.

Dr. Stephen Klasko, dean of the University of South Florida medical school and vice president of USF Health, has added another title — CEO of the Byrd Institute.

The institute's board approved an affiliation agreement Friday with USF, and USF approved the same agreement Thursday, signing off on a deal worked out by state lawmakers this spring.

The change should make the institute stronger and help it win more resources to fight Alzheimer's, said Judy Genshaft, USF president.

"This brings all the expertise together of USF's neurosciences with Byrd," she said. "I think it's a very good and fortunate endeavor."

After years of struggling for state funding, the institute will be able to cut administrative costs and find new sources of research dollars, Klasko said.

"As with USF Health, we'll diversify our portfolio," Klasko said of the institute. "Each year it's been a race to see if the state will fund it. My goal is to expand. … We'll be looking for NIH funding and entrepreneurial funding."

NIH, the National Institutes of Health, is the key source of federal science grants.

Although Klasko will be CEO, he doesn't expect to run Byrd's daily operations. He said the institute will find an Alzheimer's researcher to take that role.

Huntington Potter, the center's first CEO, will remain as a senior scientist at the Byrd Institute. He also holds the Pfeiffer Endowed Chair in Alzheimer's Disease Research at USF.



[Last modified: Aug 22, 2008 10:23 PM]

http://www.tampabay.com/news/health/...icle781578.ece
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Old August 28th, 2008, 01:12 AM   #15
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If they do expand, hopefully they will forego the craptacular modernist aestetic used on the present structure... It looks a great deal like a jail, colocation facility for the telecoms or perhaps a morgue. Not exactly the kind of impression you want to give old folks who need help with their mental health.
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Old August 28th, 2008, 04:35 PM   #16
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Yikes! Where do they come up with such junky designs?
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Old August 28th, 2008, 06:56 PM   #17
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^That's what happens when our government dumbs everythigng down to the lowest common denominator. We're incapable of anything better.
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Old August 28th, 2008, 07:23 PM   #18
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Designwise, I actually thought it was pretty innovative for the area. Would you prefer a box with a bunch of foam trim glued on the walls? I had my fill of that when I was deisgning houses on Tierra Verde.
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Old May 1st, 2009, 01:35 PM   #19
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State funding unclear for Moffitt, Byrd centers



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By CATHERINE DOLINSKI

cdolinski@tampatrib.com

Published: May 1, 2009

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TALLAHASSEE - Budget talks at the Capitol remain dicey for Tampa's H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and dire for the city's Johnnie B. Byrd Sr. Alzheimer's Center & Research Institute, with the latter failing so far to win any funding.

Negotiations over 2009-10 state spending continue, and anything remains possible. But the bad news for the Byrd Institute has only gotten worse, with its proposed funding whittled from a meager $100,000 down to zero.

That $100,000 was a far cry from the $5 million the center's leaders say it needs to maintain its prestigious federal designation as a National Alzheimer's Disease Research Center. But the funding proposal at least made Byrd part of final budget negotiations.

Thursday, Nan Rich, vice chairwoman of the Senate's health care budget committee, confirmed: "There's no money for the Byrd center. I think it's pretty much agreed."

House Health Care Appropriations Chairman Kevin Ambler, R-Lutz, said Thursday that the Hillsborough County delegation hasn't given up.

"It has profound impacts on the community and on the state in terms of our ability to draw down national research dollars," he said.

But Rich, R-Sunrise, alluded to controversy that for years has swirled around the Byrd Institute over governance, spending and other issues. "It was just decided that because of the previous issues that was not the place where the money would go in a year like this."

The Moffitt center fared better Thursday, when the House proposed giving it $20 million of expected revenue from a $1-a-pack increase in the state's cigarette tax.

Moffitt, which seeks money to pay for its $371 million campus expansion, once enjoyed annual funding for capital projects, but lawmakers allowed that arrangement to expire last year. This spring, the House and Senate have agreed to spend $50 million expected from increasing the cigarette tax on cancer research.

Whether the Senate will agree to spending $20 million of that on the Moffitt center remains to be seen. Durell Peaden, R-Crestview, who oversees health care spending in the Senate, said Senate leaders are leaning toward spending the money on peer-reviewed statewide grant programs for research.

"We're hopeful that ... Moffitt will receive the resources we need, not only for treatment and research, but also be a bondable source of income that we've been seeking so that we can complete the construction of the campus of the Moffitt Research Park," said Jamie Wilson, lobbyist for the cancer center.

The health care budget chairmen are leaving the issue to their respective chambers' budget chiefs for resolution.

Reporter Catherine Dolinski can be reached at (850) 222-8382.

http://www2.tbo.com/content/2009/may...rs/news-metro/
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