The Institute for Spirituality and Health
Exploring the connections between spirituality and health.

Gathering of Friends

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The Gathering of Friends Luncheon, held each fall at River Oaks Country Club, is a time to celebrate the mission of ISH by honoring those who embody its values.  Through a keynote speaker, who addresses an important health challenge in a spiritual manner, we present the Rabbi Samuel E. Karff Caring Heart Award to an individual or institution that demonstrates similar actions of caring and concern. Often, we honor the work of a Texas Medical Center institution. The event is a powerful reminder of the work being done in our community to increase the presence of spirituality in all aspects of life, especially in times of difficulty.  We hope that you will consider joining us – it is sure to uplift and inspire.

2019 Keynote Speaker and Awardee:

Keynote: Patrick Summers Awardee: The Women’s Home
Houston Grand Opera's Artistic and Music Director

Honorary Chairs - Susan and Secretary James A. Baker, III

Join us at this year’s Gathering of Friends

If you are interested in becoming a Principal Underwriter, please contact Jeff Sokoloff at (713) 797-0600

Past Keynote Speakers and Awardees:

2018 - Keynote: Rabbi David A. Lyon and Tara Storch // Awardee: LifeGift - Houston

2017 - Keynote: Robert J. Wicks, Ph.D. // Awardee: Father Donald S. Nesti

2016 - Keynote: Mauro Ferrari, Ph.D. and Eduardo Bruera, M.D. // Awardee: Dick Stasney, M.D.

2015 - Keynote: Darrell Cass, M.D. // Awardee: Texas Children's Hospital

2014 - Keynote: Congresswoman Gabrielle "Gabby" Giffords, and Mark Kelly // Awardee: TIRR Memorial Hermann and Rabbi Sam Karff

2013 - Keynote: Susan Baker // Awardee: James Willerson, M.D.