06/04/2010

Gift Supports WVU Children’s Eye Services in Mercer County

Kendrick also helps WVU Eye Institute research and patient care

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Earl G. “Ken” Kendrick, owner of the Arizona Diamondbacks, has extended his generosity to the West Virginia University Eye Institute. His recent gift of $120,000 will support two Children’s Vision Rehabilitation Program (CVRP) clinics in Mercer County, W.Va., this year, as well as one of the CVRP’s Summer Institutes. The CVRP programs are life-changing opportunities for children with low vision and blindness to have fun with other children like themselves and to learn valuable life skills.
 
His gift will also support research and patient care for retinopathy of prematurity, an eye disease afflicting premature infants that can lead to blindness. The WVU Eye Institute is the only facility in West Virginia equipped to treat this condition. The remainder of the gift will extend the services of the state’s only neuro-ophthalmologist to indigent patients.

Kendrick said that a powerful presentation by Judie Charlton, M.D., director of the Eye Institute, brought his attention to the need for vision outreach in West Virginia. He also supports similar programs in Arizona. “There has been limited focus on vision in the Southern part of the state,” he said. “This is an opportunity for me to help.”

While experiencing only mild vision problems himself, Kendrick is deeply sympathetic to the challenges faced by those with impaired sight.

“We at the WVU Eye Institute are excited to have a new friend and supporter in Ken Kendrick,” Dr. Charlton said. “His gift will mean a lot for the children of Mercer County and patients across the state.”

Kendrick, a native of Princeton, W.Va., graduated from WVU in 1965 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. After spending a few years at IBM in Baltimore, he left to form his own company, Datatel, Inc. which is now the industry leader in the development of software infrastructure technology for colleges and universities. He also experienced great success investing in the banking industry, including Woodforest National Bank, one of the largest employee-owned banks in the U.S.

Kendrick’s most well known financial endeavor – ownership of the Diamondbacks – was a dream born of his lifelong passion for baseball. He serves on the Board of Directors for the WVU Foundation.
 

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For more information:
Kim Fetty, HSC News Service, 304-293-7087
fettyki@wvuh.com
kf: 06-02-10

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