Party With a Purpose
By Alisa Pierce Texas Medicine March 2024


Dallas internist Donna Casey, MD, and her husband, Dallas pulmonologist Gary Weinstein, MD, have a long history of medical advocacy.

From Dr. Casey’s term as the 2023 president of the Dallas County Medical Society (DCMS) to Dr. Weinstein’s position on the DCMS Legislative Grassroots Advocacy Subcommittee, the couple have spent their careers improving the lives of Texans through on-the-ground activism.

Now, as co-chairs of the Texas Medical Association Foundation’s (TMAF’s) 31st annual gala, the duo will continue their support in a different way by helping to carry out medicine’s community outreach programs – and in costume.

“We are thrilled to continue our support of the Texas Medical Association, which advocates for Texas physicians and the millions of citizens that rely on those physicians for health care,” Dr. Casey said. “And we’re glad we get to have some fun, too.”

This year’s gala, Wonderland, also co-chaired by Drs. Rainer and Anita Khetan and Drs. Roger Khetan and Thomas Heil, will feature designs and décor inspired by Lewis Carroll’s classic story Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. It will be held on Friday, May 3, during TMA’s annual TexMed conference at the Dallas Convention Center, and attendees are encouraged to dress in “tea party” or business casual fashion.

The event will highlight the work Texas physicians have done for decades to promote a healthier Texas.

Through sponsorship, ticket sales, and auction items, the gala raises funds each year for a wide range of programs to support TMA’s vision to improve the health of all Texans.

Last year’s gala in Fort Worth, The Art of Medicine, sold out and set a new sponsorship record – a record TMAF Executive Director Lisa Stark Walsh hopes to break in May.

Over nearly three decades, TMAF has disbursed more than $1 million to community health programs across Texas, ranging from vaccine clinics and border health services to breast cancer screenings and book giveaways to children.

These initiatives connect patients to necessary care and honor TMA’s mission to provide Texas physicians with resources to tackle local health challenges, says Dr. Weinstein.

“The foundation understands what’s important to physicians and works to provide aid wherever necessary,” he said. “As TMAF’s largest event by far, the annual gala provides a chance for physicians to pay that aid forward to further medicine’s reach.”

The event typically raises $30,000 to support Hard Hats for Little Heads, a TMA initiative to provide bicycle helmets to children, as well as raises funds for the TMA Diversity in Medicine Scholarship program and evaluations of funded programs’ effectiveness and impact.

“The gala makes almost everything the foundation aims to do possible,” Ms. Walsh said. “The generosity of our sponsors and attendees allows us to care for Texas physicians and their patients, and each year the event gets bigger and bigger. That speaks to the devotion our members show for their communities, and for Texas as a whole.”

TMA Executive Vice President and CEO Michael Darrouzet – whose band, Eclipse, will perform as the event’s main entertainment – also is excited for the event, which he said “stems from a desire to have fun with our members. When the gala started many years ago, it was TMA’s intention to show our members that the Family of Medicine can give back to the community while engaging in fellowship together. Recently, this event has filled a post-pandemic void to become a space where physicians can come together for a good cause and have fun. And it’s a joy to see.

“I just hope everyone likes Jackson Browne, Billy Joel, and Tom Petty – because our band certainly does.”

Institution and company gala table sponsorships are now available from $3,500 to $50,000. Individuals may sponsor a table starting at $2,750 or purchase tickets. To reserve a spot or for more information, TMA members can call TMAF at (512) 370-1664.

Last Updated On

March 05, 2024

Originally Published On

February 29, 2024

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TMA Foundation

Alisa Pierce

Reporter, Division of Communications and Marketing

(512) 370-1469
Alisa Pierce

Alisa Pierce is a reporter for Texas Medicine. After graduating from Texas State University, she worked in local news, covering state politics, public health, and education. Alongside her news writing, Alisa covered up-and-coming artists in Central Texas and abroad as a music journalist. As a Texas native, she enjoys capturing the landscape on her film camera while hiking her way across the Lonestar State.

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