Gift Honors Mentor and Friend

Dr. Richard Parker

Dr. Richard Parker

Dr. Richard Parker enjoyed a rich and meaningful career in nephrology at OHSU. Recently retired, he looked back on his career and one name stood out as mentor, leader, visionary and friend: Dr. William M. Bennett.

William M. Bennett, M.D., is an expert in nephrology and kidney transplantation. He received his medical degree from Northwestern University. Following his residency in internal medicine at Northwestern, Dr. Bennett served as chief resident, internal medicine at the University of Oregon Medical School, Portland, now OHSU. Dr. Bennett completed a fellowship in nephrology at Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston. He was the chief of the Division of Nephrology and Hypertension at OHSU from 1978 until 1994, retiring as professor of medicine and pharmacology in 1999.

Dr. Bennett has been recognized numerous times for his contributions to the medical profession, including the Polycystic Kidney Research Foundation Jared J. Grantham Distinguished Achievement Award, the Belding Scribner Award of the American Society of Nephrology, the Kidney Association of Oregon First Gift of Life Award and the Medical Research Foundation of Oregon Discovery Award and Prize. He is a past president of the American Society of Nephrology and the current editor-in-chief emeritus of the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

Dr. and Mrs. Parker wished to honor their friend and mentor upon the announcement of Dr. Bennett’s planned second retirement in 2020. The honor had to be appropriate, permanent and befitting of Dr. Bennett’s influence, achievements and commitment to the education and training of future nephrologists. Dr. Parker chose to establish a permanent endowment at the OHSU Foundation in Dr. Bennett’s name as the perfect recognition of Dr. Bennett’s many contributions and achievements. And knowing that others felt the same gratitude and admiration, Dr. Parker sought the support of those whose careers were influenced by Dr. Bennett for the endowment.

Dr. Parker created a unique gift, and he embraced a very smart funding mechanism. Utilizing a whole life insurance policy that had provided for the safety of his family during their growing years, Dr. Parker contributed it to the OHSU Foundation to provide the “start-up” funding for the Bennett endowment, thereby utilizing an asset for which he now had little need. He also received a tax deduction for his vision and generosity.

If you would like to support the William M. Bennett, M.D., Endowment, please visit If you would like assistance in gifting securities, an insurance policy or other asset, please contact Ann Barden, director of gift planning, at or (503) 412-6355.