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School & Program Updates

School & Program Updates

Florida Convocation Ceremony

The University of Florida College of Public Health and Health Professions welcomed Mr. Richard Staab, president of Tyler’s Hope for a Dystonia Cure, as the distinguished speaker at the college’s convocation ceremony held April 30.

Staab, Richard
[Photo: Mr. Richard Staab]

Mr. Staab is the president and CEO of InterMed Biomedical Services, InterMed Nuclear and InterMed Ultrasound Services, companies that were named among the country’s fastest growing businesses for the past two years by Inc. magazine. He and his wife Michelle started the non-profit organization Tyler’s Hope for a Dystonia Cure in 2006, shortly after their son Tyler was diagnosed with dystonia, a neurological movement disorder that causes involuntary, and often painful, muscle contractions. Their daughter Samantha was diagnosed with the disease a few years later. Tyler’s Hope has given more than $12 million to fund research to prevent and cure dystonia and create awareness of the disorder.

“Please learn a life lesson from this example: Don’t just do science or treat patients, but think about how you can really help them and improve their quality of life,” Mr. Staab told graduates. “I promise you, because I have lived it, that this approach makes a difference not only in the people you serve, but also in the people around them.”

Mr. Staab acknowledged that a career in health practice or research can be difficult, but it is fulfilling.

“I challenge you to translate that into a fearless pursuit of solutions to our health care problems,” he said. “Bring back the high-risk, high-reward research and develop new technologies and new patient care. I believe your amazing talent will be driven by your passion and that you will not forfeit compassion in the process.”