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Published on November 15, 2017

Gala Honors Leaders in Heart and Vascular Care

Cone Health recognizes five people who have changed heart care in our area.


The Cone Health Heart and Vascular Gala honors people who have greatly improved cardiovascular care at Cone Health. Four physicians and a senior executive were recognized for their legacies of remarkable patient care and for helping Cone Health become a nationally recognized heart and vascular center.

Retiring physicians honored

Retiring cardiologists Thomas Brackbill, MD, and Jeffrey Katz, MD, and vascular surgeon James Lawson, MD, were noted for advancing new approaches to combat heart and vascular disease.

Drs. Brackbill, Katz and Lawson

“Drs. Brackbill, Katz and Lawson have provided outstanding and lifesaving care to thousands of heart and vascular patients in our community,” said Jake Hochrein, MD, medical chief of Cone Health’s Heart and Vascular Center. “We are grateful for their exceptional care and their contributions in shaping our center of excellence.”

Charles “Bucky” Wilson, MD, remembered

The gala paid tribute to the late Charles “Bucky” Wilson, MD, director of Cone Health’s cardiovascular surgery program.

Dr. Charles Wilson

He was also the first medical director of the Heart and Vascular Center at Cone Health. Thomas Stuckey, MD, director of the LeBauer-Brodie Cardiovascular Research and Education Center at Cone Health and medical director of quality at Moses Cone Hospital, said Wilson was one of the finest cardiac surgeons North Carolina had ever seen.

“When minimally invasive bypass surgery was first coming on board, Dr. Wilson learned how to do that and got the program initiated at Cone Health,” Stuckey said. “In addition, when mitral valve repair became the standard for dealing with mitral valve disease, he went to France and returned with the knowledge to establish that here.”

Rich Lundy recognized with LeBauer Visionary Award

The Heart and Vascular Center’s top annual award was presented to Rich Lundy, MBA, RRT, vice president of heart and vascular services, imaging services and respiratory care at Cone Health.

Rich Lundy (left)

The award recognizes those who have made significant contributions to improving the cardiovascular health of our community and region.

“Rich Lundy has been an incredibly integral part of our initiatives to advance heart and vascular care since 2011 and he’s championed a really potent vision for the long-term future of our program,” said cardiothoracic surgeon Clarence Owen, MD. “Most importantly, he’s done tremendous things to create our tight-knit community, to get our physician group more deeply involved in strategic planning and partnerships that improve patient care.”

The LeBauer Visionary Award is named in honor of Sidney LeBauer, MD, an internist and cardiologist, and Joseph LeBauer, MD, one of the founding cardiologists of what is now Cone Health Medical Group HeartCare. Lundy is the first non-clinical recipient of the award.

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