At this year’s Fritz Krauth Memorial Fellowship Award presentation are (from left) PVA NSO Shawn Tracy; PVA National Vice President David Fowler; Mid-America PVA President Bill Kokendoffer; recipient Fuyuan Liao, PhD; and PVA member Tom Richey. Standing in background is Mid-America PVA Government Relations director Scott Ellis.
PVA grant awarded to Oklahoma University Health and Science Center
During PVA Awareness Month, in April, the Oklahoma University Health Science Center received a large gift from the Paralyzed Veterans of America Research Foundation.
The $100,000 grant was The Fritz Krauth Memorial Fellowship Award, won this year by Fuyuan Liao, PhD. Liao is conducting research — the effect of obesity on soft tissue mechanical properties in people with spinal cord injury — at the Oklahoma center.
Presentation of the award usually occurs at PVA’s national convention, but due to scheduling problems Liao is unable to attend the August meeting. Given the importance of this grant, PVA decided to confer the honor during PVA Awareness Month.
Representatives from Mid-America PVA and National PVA Vice President Liaison David Fowler joined Dr. Rudeen, Health Science Center dean, and many other university dignitaries as Liao accepted an oversize check representing the Krauth Fellowship Award. Following this, the PVA group received a tour of the laboratories where the research is being conducted. OU is doing several studies with SCI patients as a focus group.
A PVA member and donor, Krauth was a retired certified public accountant and a successful land developer in Southern California. He sustained a spinal-cord injury during a hard landing while serving in the U.S. Navy. In the mid-1990s, Krauth worked with PVA Individual Giving staff to establish a trust fund to benefit PVA’s Spinal Cord Research Fund (SCRF, now the PVA Research Foundation) following his death. He died in 2002, leaving an unrestricted gift to PVA totaling $590,000. As a fitting memorial to Krauth’s interest in spinal-cord research, care and cure, the SCRF Board of Trustees decided to use his bequest to establish the annual Fritz Krauth Memorial Fellowship, awarded to the top-rated fellowship applicant each year. The first award was presented to Xiaolin He, PhD, in 2003.