Denver Health commemorates the Honorable Wellington Webb with portrait for his contributions to the hospital system and the Denver community

Thursday, February 15, 2024

DENVER — Former Denver Mayor Wellington Webb joined Denver Health CEO Donna Lynne today for an event honoring him and his important role in ensuring the long-term success of Denver Health. Lynne unveiled a commemorative portrait of Webb displayed near the main entrance of the hospital where tens of thousands of people will see the portrait annually.

“Celebrating the unveiling of my portrait at Denver Health fills me with profound gratitude and humility,” Webb said. “It's a reminder of the privilege to serve and the responsibility to uplift our community. May this portrait stand not only as a recognition of my efforts but as a symbol of our collective commitment to health, equity and unity.”

Local artist Darrell Anderson, whose work is featured on landmarks throughout the city and state, created the portrait of Webb. During the unveiling, Lynne highlighted the many ways Webb supported Denver Health as a state representative, regional director of the U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare, and Denver mayor.

“From the beginning, Mayor Webb championed a healthier Denver,” Lynne said.

During his time as mayor, Webb led the initiative to transition Denver Health from a city-run department to an independent hospital authority. This decision paved the way for Denver Health to flourish as a safety-net hospital and serve as a model for public hospitals across the nation.

“All hospitals and health systems must adapt to change,” Webb told The Denver Post after the Denver City Council voted for the change in September 1996. “I want to be sure that on my watch, we’ve done all we can to assure adequate health care for our citizens into the future.”

Denver Health has grown substantially since this transition, and the impact of Webb’s decision is reflected in the Denver community through the health care system’s Level I trauma center, 10 family health centers, 19 school-based health centers, mobile health centers and more.

“Because of the unique and necessary care we provide, Denver Health is poised to become the most trusted health care provider in Colorado,” Lynne said. “When elected officials like Mayor Webb choose Denver Health for their medical care, it speaks volumes about our expertise and services.”

Denver Health Foundation Executive Director Crystal Potter Rivera recognized Webb for his commitment to public service and his tireless advocacy for the well-being of Denver’s residents. Webb served on the Foundation board from 2009 to 2019 and has served as a Foundation ambassador since 2020.

“Mayor Webb’s generosity has impacted nearly every aspect of Denver Health’s services, which play a vital role in every aspect of our collective wellness and individual health,” Potter Rivera said. “Through his dedication to Denver Health, Mayor Webb has helped countless individuals access quality health care, regardless of their socioeconomic status.”

Webb also has supported Denver Health by establishing the Wellington E. Webb Research Endowment Fund at Denver Health Foundation. This fund currently provides 100% of the funding to the Pilot Study Grant Program for Junior and Mid-Career Investigators (PSGP). The PSGP’s main goal is to assist researchers in conducting pilot and feasibility studies that will enhance their opportunity of securing external research funding. This endowment serves as a lasting tribute to Mayor Webb’s enduring commitment to the health and well-being of Denver’s people.

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About Denver Health

Denver Health is a comprehensive health and hospital system that provides high-quality care and proudly serves as the city’s safety net hospital. For more than 160 years, Denver Health has been guided by its mission to serve the people of Denver, to educate the next generation of health care professionals and to engage in research and community partnerships to better deliver the health care needs of our patients while strengthening our community.

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