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MRC News

Published on August 14, 2012
Health and Research News Service

The Wilson Research Foundation met in May 2012 in the BankPlus Conference Center at Methodist Rehab Center. From left, Methodist Rehab President and CEO Mark Adams, Dick Molpus, Dave Robinson, Ginny Wilson Mounger, Matt Holleman, Gene Delcomyn, Juanita Lester, Sam Lane, Dr. Marion Wofford, Ed Kossman, Sally Carmichael, Dr. Robert Smith, Methodist Rehab Medical Director Dr. Sam Grissom and Wilson Foundation Executive Director Chris Blount. Not shown are foundation board members Martha Lyles Wilson, Dean Miller and Mary Helen McCarty Griffis.

The Wilson Research Foundation recently awarded $650,000 for patient-focused research projects at Methodist Rehabilitation Center in Jackson, a grant made possible by the generosity of 1,000-plus Mississippians.

The foundation, a supporting organization of Methodist Rehab, received contributions through its annual Walk & Roll fundraiser and gifts from individual and corporate donors.

“Our donors have been incredibly generous, and this will help Methodist Rehab introduce new therapies and better understand what works best to help our patients recover ability and quality of life,” said Wilson Foundation Executive Director Chris Blount.

“Our donors have a direct connection to our work; most are past patients or have had loved ones or employees here as patients,” Blount said. “They often tell me that they give to us because of the profound impact this center has in Mississippi since most of our patients return home and back to productive lives.”

The 2012 grant will fund current and expanded studies into ways to improve walking, arm function and cognitive function after a stroke, brain injury, spinal cord injury or other disabling illness or injury.

“This support from the Wilson Foundation helps us develop and evaluate promising new therapies, and to challenge the effectiveness of traditional clinical practices,” said Dr. Dobrivoje Stokic, Methodist Rehab’s administrative director of research.

The Wilson Research Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization established in 1989 by Mary Ann and Mac McCarty in honor of the late Earl R. Wilson, founding chairman of Methodist Rehab, and his wife Martha Lyles Wilson.

The foundation has awarded more than $4 million in clinical research grants, all raised locally through contributions.

“Most research programs in hospitals depend only on federal or other external grants,” Stokic said.  “This is cyclical and unreliable. We are blessed that research at Methodist Rehab is supported mainly through philanthropy because it allows us to attract and retain world-class research and clinical talent.  And the benefits of this approach range from innovations in patient care to over 200 manuscripts and book chapters published to date.”   

For more information about Methodist Rehabilitation Center and the Wilson Research Foundation, contact Chris Blount at (601) 364-3498 or email