October 18, 1996

Franklin remembered for dedicated service to VUMC community

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Bill Franklin

William W. (Bill) Franklin was remembered this week as a gifted fundraiser and trusted friend of those who worked with him at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Franklin, 52, executive director of Development for Vanderbilt University Medical Center, died last Friday from injuries sustained in a car accident. He had been visiting a physician in LaGrange, Ga., on business for VUMC, and was returning home when his car collided with another on U.S. Hwy. 29.

Services were held Monday at the Whiteman Chapel at the Scarritt-Bennett Center.

The family asks in lieu of flowers that donations be made to the Bill Franklin Memorial Fund for Alzheimer's Research, 301 Medical Center South, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, 37232-3100.

Dr. Roscoe R. Robinson, Vice-Chancellor for Health Affairs at VUMC, said Franklin will be missed as both a colleague and a friend.

"Bill's unexpected departure is a great personal and professional loss for me and leaves a major void at Vanderbilt University Medical Center," Robinson said. "As executive director of Medical Center Development he did so much more than raise funds for medical research and medical education. No one associated with Vanderbilt University Medical Center, past or present, has had a greater commitment to its success than Bill Franklin."

John S. Beasley, Vice-Chancellor for Alumni and Development for Vanderbilt, headed the search committee who hired Franklin in 1989.

"Bill was a great colleague and friend and was great at what he did. He was a great human being," Beasley said. "He was a consummate professional at what we do. He has done a terrific job for Vanderbilt."

Franklin came to VUMC in December 1989 from Millsaps College in Jackson, Miss., where he had served as vice president for development for the previous 10 years.

He held a degree in journalism from the University of Georgia and did graduate study in journalism and management.

Soon after his graduation in 1966, he became the University of Georgia's assistant director of Alumni Relations, and from 1971-1975 he was director of Resource Development at Georgia Southern College.

Franklin is survived by his wife, Madge, and stepchildren, Michael Columbus of Louisville, Ky., and Daniel Columbus of Memphis.