University News

Magoon to Deliver WIU's Annual Ferguson Lecture

September 27, 2013

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MACOMB, IL – Western Illinois University alumnus Patrick Magoon, president and CEO of the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago, will deliver the 2013 Robert and Mary Ferguson Lecture, "Improving Child & Adolescent Health in the Healthcare Reform Era," at 2 p.m. Monday, Oct. 14 in the University Union Grand Ballroom.

Magoon graduated from Western in 1976 with a bachelor's degree in sociology.

Magoon began his time at the children's hospital in 1977 while he was working on his master's degree in urban policy and planning at the University of Illinois. He was named president and CEO in 1997.

As leader of the children's hospital, Magoon led the facility in a $30 million turnaround, which increased the number of children served by nearly 50 percent and quadrupled the funding received for research from the National Institutes of Health.

In 2005, the hospital's board of directors presented Magoon with a seven-year plan to build a new hospital. In 2012, the Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago moved to a new 288-bed facility on the downtown campus of Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine, the hospital's academic partner.

The move increased clinical, academic and research opportunities as well as led to better care for children. The hospital was constructed with the help of more than 250,000 donors and a $675 million "Heroes for Life" fundraising campaign, which was led by Magoon and surpassed its fundraising goal by $75 million.

Since the facility's move, the hospital has been able to recruit 53 of the top pediatric specialists and the facility has more than doubled the hospital's clinical research capabilities through the new Clinical Research Unit.

Lurie Children's Hospital has been recognized for patient safety by the Leapfrog Group as ranking among the top 10 children's hospitals in the U.S.News & World Report 2012-2013 Honor Roll and being listed in Parents magazine as one of the 10 Best Children's Hospitals for 2013.

Additionally, the hospital was named one of the 100 Best Places to Work in Healthcare 2013 list by Becker's Healthcare. The hospital has also held the Magnet Hospital designation by the American Nurses Credentialing Center since 2001, when it became the first children's hospital in the country to receive this prestigious recognition of nursing excellence.

In addition to serving as an advocate for children's health, Magoon has played a major role in federal and state issues, such as Medicaid reform for medically complex children, graduate medical education, pediatric research and child safety. He is a past chairman of the Board of Trustees for the National Association of Children's Hospitals and Related Institutions/National Association of Children's Hospitals (now called Children's Hospital Association) and has provided high level expertise through service on numerous committees. He is also a past chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Illinois Hospital Association.

The Robert and Mary Ferguson Lecture was started 23 years ago by the generosity of the late Robert (Bob) Ferguson and his wife, Mary. Robert Ferguson received his bachelor's degree from Western and later served as a professor and the business education chair for 20 years. He was instrumental in guiding the WIU Department of Business Education through numerous changes, including the 1966 establishment of the WIU College of Business.

The lecture series is based on Robert Ferguson's belief that all college students should benefit from the depth and breadth of experience, especially by seeing and hearing from key business leaders who have been successful.

Past Ferguson lecturers have included then U.S. Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood; Glen Barton, then chairman and CEO of Caterpillar, Inc.; Mary Lou Quinlan, founder of Just Ask A Woman; Richard E. Rominger, then deputy secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture; Edward J. McManus, then chief operating officer of Procurement and Logistics from American Stores Company; Robert L. Nardelli, as president and chief executive officer of GE Power Systems; Lynn Morley Martin as U.S. Secretary of Labor for the George H.W. Bush Administration; William Weiss, then chairman and chief executive officer of Ameritech; Howard Putnam, then chief executive officer of Southwest Airlines and William Alexander Hewitt, then chairman and chief executive officer of Deere and Company.

The lecture, sponsored by WIU's College of Business and Technology (CBT), is open free to the public.

For more information, contact Lori Boyer at (309) 298-2442 or

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