“FOR 70 YEARS, THE TEXAS MEDICAL CENTER HAS BEEN LARGELY FOCUSED ON INFRASTRUCTURE – BUILDING THE BEST CANCER HOSPITAL, THE LARGEST CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL IN THE WORLD, ETC. – BUT THE NEXT 100 YEARS WILL BE ABOUT LEVERAGING SYNERGIES AMONG OUR 60 MEMBER INSTITUTIONS IN A COLLECTIVE WAY. THE FUTURE IS COLLABORATION,” SAYS WILLIAM “BILL” MCKEON, PRESIDENT AND CEO OF THE TEXAS MEDICAL CENTER SINCE APRIL 2017.
Responsible for driving strategic, operational and programmatic initiatives across the Texas Medical Center’s member institutions to enhance its leadership position in the life sciences, he epitomizes the word trailblazer in every sense of the word.
McKeon joined the Texas Medical Center in 2013 as executive vice president, chief operating and strategy officer, having previously worked at Stanford University Medical Center DuPont, US Oncology and Medtronic, among other places. “What an opportunity…to come to the largest medical city on earth and be able to work on its transformation. Something has changed in the world – large institutions are coming together; the Broad Institute in Boston is probably the best example, bringing together MIT, Harvard and Harvard-affiliated hospitals to advance biomedicine research,” he explains. “Overnight, it became the leading place in the world to do genomics through
collaboration. Boston is the center of biomedicine now.”
McKeon fully believes similar opportunities abound at the Texas Medical Center. From the day he started at TMC, he has been instrumental in the strategic planning process that established the future of the sprawling complex. Through that process, TMC executives brought together leaders from all the member institutions (hospitals, medical schools, academic institutions) and laid plans to establish five institutes focused on collaboration: innovation, health policy, clinical research, genomics and
The TMC Innovation Institute has been McKeon’s “baby” from the beginning. Using his vision, TMC renovated 100,000sf of an old Nabisco cookie factory at 2450 Holcombe Blvd. into a modern space that is now home to much of Houston’s rapidly growing innovation ecosystem. The Innovation Institute, opened in October 2014, was developed as a way to attract startups and health care technology companies to Houston.
Contained in the Innovation Institute are several unique programs, like TMCx, a startup accelerator, and TMCx+, a 24,000sf co-working space that provides both private and open working space for more developed healthcare companies. In March 2016, McKeon and the TMC team recruited Fortune 100 global company Johnson & Johnson to plant a flag for the first time in the state of Texas. Johnson & Johnson opened JLABS @ TMC, a 36,000sf co-working and incubator space for health care and biotech companies. In November of this year, J&J doubled down on their investment in the TMC and opened the Center for Device Innovation (CDI @ TMC). A first of its kind for J&J, the 26,000sf facility brings together expertise and resources for taking new medical technologies from concept to commercialization while providing J&J’s medical devices research and development teams a state-of-the-art “maker space” to rapidly prototype and access preclinical facilities across the Texas Medical Center.
WHAT’S NEXT ON THE HORIZON? The $1.5 billion 30-acre “TMC3 Innovation Campus,” complete with retail, a hotel, shared research space for its four major (and fiercely competitive) research institutions (University of Texas, Texas A & M University, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center and Baylor College of Medicine). “Traditionally, institutions would come to the CEO of the Texas Medical Center and ask for three acres for themselves,” says McKeon, “but now we’re getting major institutions coming to the table together to share a common space. They’ll save money and achieve economies
of scale, but they’ll also unlock collaborative potential, and that’s priceless.”