What began with the historic ETMC hospital has become a growing community of wellness.

ETMC About, History And Story
ETMC Hospital Tyler main campus copy
ETMC History And Story

What began with the historic ETMC hospital has become a growing community of wellness.

ETMC Hospital Tyler main campus

Our history

The East Texas Medical Center (ETMC) Foundation began in the 1940s by Tyler citizens, who envisioned a healthcare environment supported by local communities. Originally named the East Texas Hospital Foundation, it was founded on the premise of big dreams for East Texas: a major medical center, a regional blood bank, and a nursing school – all housed in Tyler. Thanks to East Texans’ generosity, those dreams were realized as Medical Center Hospital (eventually becoming ETMC Tyler), the W.E. and Lela I. Stewart Blood Bank, and the Texas Eastern School of Nursing all opened in 1951 and 1952.

The ETMC Foundation, chartered by ETMC Regional Healthcare System, maintained its predecessor’s focus as a public foundation and continued its fundraising efforts to advance the delivery of exceptional health care services for East Texans. Among its many endeavors was developing a regional trauma network, including the region’s only Level 1 Trauma Center, state-of-the-art hospitals in Pittsburg and Quitman, regional oncology and behavioral health programs, and countless clinical and educational initiatives aimed at improving lives.

Now, 80 years after its inception, the dreams of the ETMC Foundation are greater than ever. With the net proceeds from the sale of ETMC Regional Healthcare System to the University of Texas and Ardent Healthcare in 2018, the ETMC Foundation converted into a private foundation with a broad objective: To improve the health and quality of lives in Tyler and the surrounding East Texas communities. One of its first investments – an $80 million donation to support the establishment of a University of Texas Medical School in Tyler. Big dreams – big impact – transforming the health education, care, and outcomes in this region.