Orthopedic Spinal Surgeon and Philanthropist Donates $50 Million to USC


Dr. Gary K. Michelson, a 64-year-old retired orthopedic spinal surgeon and philanthropist, has donated $50 million to the University of Southern California for the creation of a 190,000-square-foot bioscience center.

The donation will be utilized for building the USC Michelson Center for Convergent Bioscience. The center will include state-of-art laboratories with microscopy imaging machines.

"Dr. Michelson's generous gift is truly visionary, as it will bridge USC's strengths in a broad range of disciplines, including the sciences, engineering, medicine, mathematics, and computer science," USC President C. L. Max Nikias said in astatement. "The new USC Michelson Center will be a vibrant hub for innovation, and will help create a major biomedical research corridor in Southern California."

The center will serve as the cornerstone of a new collaboration between the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences and the USC Viterbi School of Engineering.

Michelson, a Los Angeles resident, said that the center will draw specialists from various fields to work on overcoming challenges in health and related fields.

The method "will be actually revolutionary for any university in the world," Michelson said. "This is bold. It really is brave," Miami Herald reports.

Named one of the richest Americans in Forbes list, Michelson invented several surgical techniques, spinal implants and surgical instruments, during his 25 years as a surgeon.

Michelson has received notable honors for his work - in 2008 he was given the Distinguished Scientist award by the Paralyzed Veterans of America for his commitment to the area of traumatic spinal disorders and inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2011. He is set to be inducted into the National Academy of Inventors, March.

"The gift is all about the promise of this convergent scientific method," Michelson said. "With the University of Southern California as the place to stand and the 'method' as the 'lever long enough,' I expect that we will indeed move the world."

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