On this page, I often tout the qualities that make Houston unique. But here’s a new distinction I’m not happy to report: Houston is the largest city in the U.S. that Amazon is unwilling to consider as the future of its second headquarters.
After Amazon announced the list of its 20 finalist cities, with Houston absent, leaders here reacted with shock, outrage, indignation and sadness—not unlike the stages of grief. The sting was even worse since our friendly rivals, Austin and Dallas, made the cut. Amazon didn’t pass on Texas. It just took a pass on Houston.
Despite the frustration, some business and civic leaders quietly shared the emerging consensus that maybe our city really is lacking some of the key ingredients needed to attract the world’s top companies. We should encourage that type of introspection.
Houston has a lot going for it, including its diversity, the energy industry, NASA, the Port of Houston and, of course, the Texas Medical Center—the largest medical city in the world. But the Amazon decision is a signal that those assets are no longer enough. Instead of touting the same qualities we’ve always relied on in our pitch, we must honestly address our shortcomings and create new sources of value to attract emerging Fortune 100 companies and millennial talent. If we don’t, Amazon won’t be the only company that refuses to consider Houston.
My pledge is that the Texas Medical Center will do its part in that effort. We recognize we must do more than simply represent a collection of individual institutions that happen to share proximity. We must completely change the way we operate.
Our institutions are aligning in new ways, leveraging our collective expertise. We’re competing to attract industry as well as the brightest clinicians and researchers in the world. It might be a cliché, but it’s true: together, we can be greater than the sum of our parts.
Specifically, our bold plan is to create an iconic, translational research campus we call TMC3 that proudly shows we’re the Third Coast for life sciences in the United States. This will serve as a beacon to the world that Houston is diversifying its value proposition, and we intend to compete globally in the innovation of health care.
Houstonians are resilient, and every time they’ve been tested, they do whatever is necessary to thrive. I’m optimistic that Houstonians will rise to this occasion as well, and they’ll find new ways to invest in and advance our city.
William F. McKeon
President and CEO of the Texas Medical Center
Baylor College of Medicine will be closed Monday, May 28 in observance of Memorial Day. https://t.co/6CNQMhyJ92
Baylor College of MedicineBaylorCollegeOfMedicine
Baylor College of Medicine will be closed Monday, May 28 in observance of Memorial Day.
TAMU Health Sciences@TAMHSC
#TAMHSC researchers are working to solve #diabetes-related blindness: https://t.co/D1Pi8CaD0H #Health
#Melanoma survivor explains how #immunotherapy #clinicaltrial and @DrSapnaPatel gave her hope. #CancerMoonShot #endcancer https://t.co/gxr9MaYsHi
MD Anderson Cancer CenterMDAnderson
Leticia Rousseve found comfort whenever she verbalized her frustrations and feelings to others who understood what she was going through as a caregiver for her husband, James, during his soft tissue sarcoma treatment. “This taught me an important lesson that I now share with others going through cancer: you are not alone.” Now, she pays it forward by volunteering with myCancerConnection, MD Anderson’s one-on-one cancer support community of patients, survivors and caregivers who have been there. #endcancer
At sprawling VA hospital in southern Dallas, a righteous battle to keep the promise to care for America's Veterans https://t.co/yBX7Jqyn6X via @dallasnews
6.1, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.: Join @MethodistHosp Cancer Center at St. John for a celebration and luncheon as we honor those living with a history of cancer. Register today: https://t.co/epZbgu9fA0 https://t.co/FLv19JSQs0
Today’s #VeteranOfTheDay is @USArmy Veteran M. Ross Kirk. https://t.co/Z1oqPWmWig
U.S. Department of Veterans AffairsVeteransAffairs
Today’s #VeteranOfTheDay is Army Veteran M. Ross Kirk. Ross served for 28 years and retired in 1988. He attained the rank of lieutenant colonel. Ross served two tours in Vietnam with the 4/39th Infantry Battalion, the 9th Infantry Division and the 5th Special Forces Group with the Chaplain Corps. He was also a member of the 101st Airborne Division, the 18th Airborne Corps 1st Division, and the Green Beret Parachute Demonstration Team. He wore the Green Beret on active duty for nine years and is nicknamed the “Leapin’ Deacon” due to his 225 military jumps, including 50 HALO (high altitude, low opening) jumps and 450 sport parachute jumps. Ross’ positions in the Army included Command Chaplain for the Special Operations Command (Airborne) and Senior Chaplain of the Combined Peacekeeping Forces in the liberation of Grenada. He retired at Fort Riley, Kansas in 1988 and has lived with his wife Judy in Wakefield, Kansas for 27 years. They have four children, eight grandchildren and one great-grandchild. Ross was awarded four Bronze Stars, five Air Medals, the Meritorious Service Medal with three Oak Leaf Clusters, the Joint Service Commendation Medal, the Army Commendation Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters, the Army Achievement Medal and the Good Conduct Medal. He also earned the Ranger Tab, the Special Forces Tab and Master Parachutist and Air Assault Badges. Thank you for your service, Ross!
New @USDOT program provides free pilot training for Veterans https://t.co/z6mIJVPMlU via @Militarydotcom
New research funded by Department of Defense grants will look into why some women with estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer develop resistance to endocrine therapies. https://t.co/TMhNyXWZ8Y
Baylor College of MedicineBaylorCollegeOfMedicine
Congratulations to M.D/Ph.D. student Muhammad Saad Shamim on becoming a 2018 fellow of the Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowships for New Americans program.
#Chemobrain is real. Learn more about this common #cancer treatment side effect: https://t.co/86Kcj2AzFy #endcancer https://t.co/iH7IP2dIUv
What you need to know about #prostatecancer screening: https://t.co/Sbt5pA5B0J @oncolognews #endcancer
Dr. Elizabeth McIngvale talks about her journey with obsessive compulsive disorder. https://t.co/SxpIBc1gyA #MentalHealthAwarenessMonth