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Supporting the Thomas E. Starzl Transplantation Institute

The importance of making a gift to the Thomas E. Starzl Transplantation Institute cannot be overemphasized. Reimbursement for patient services from various government and private insurers cover only a portion of the cost of patient care. By supporting our efforts, you will allow us to carry on our tradition of excellence in patient care and research. Your generosity is the key to our success and represents an opportunity for all of us to make a difference.

Your contribution can be designated for a specific program at the Starzl Institute or in support of the Institute’s area of greatest need.

Types of Gift

To make an unrestricted immediate contribution to the department with an outright gift of cash.

  • Payment by Check
    Make checks payable to STI, and mail to:

Thomas E. Starzl Transplantation Institute Development Department
Forbes Tower, Suite 8084
3600 Forbes Avenue at Meyran Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA  15213

  • Payment by Credit Card
    To pay with your VISA, MasterCard, American Express, or Discover Card, call the Medical and Health Sciences Foundation at 412-647-3084, or go to the Supporting UPMC website and choose the Thomas E. Starzl Transplantation Institute on the dropdown menu. You will receive a written acknowledgment and tax receipt in the mail. Contributions are tax deductible as provided by law.

Other Giving Options

  • Gift Pledges
    Some people prefer to make a gift pledge, which can be paid in installments over a period of months or years. To make a pledge, please call Anne Immekus at 412-251-3012 or email
  • Planned Giving
    Planned giving refers to charitable gifts that are arranged as an integral part of an individual’s financial or estate planning and are executed over an extended period of time or at some point in the future. Planned giving vehicles can provide tax benefits and income streams. Gift plans can be funded with stocks and securities, artwork, real estate, life insurance policies, or other assets.
  • Honor and Memorial Gifts
    An honor or memorial gift is a thoughtful way to recognize the accomplishments or memory of a family member, friend, or colleague.
  • Matching Gifts
    Many companies match charitable donations made by employees or employees’ spouses. This additional support can double or even triple the value of your gift. Please check with your human resources department to see if your company has a gift-matching program and ask for a matching gift form. We are a 501(c)(3) designation.

For more information about making a gift to STI, please contact the Starzl Institute development director at 412-251-3012 or

Frank Sarris' Support

Frank Sarris knew quality. He grew his business, Sarris Candies, based in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, from the basement of his home to two locations and a 120,000-square-foot production facility. His success came from never compromising on quality.

Quality also shaped Frank’s positive experience as a kidney transplant recipient at the Starzl Institute. His transplant was from a living, non-related donor, at a time when most living kidney donors were related to the recipient. Frank was also one of the first patients to benefit from a protocol pioneered at the Starzl Institute that greatly reduces the amount of immunosuppressive (anti-rejection) medication that patients need after receiving a donor organ.

After his transplant, with his quality of life restored, Frank returned to his candy store, making life a little sweeter for others. He and his wife, Athena, decided to support the ongoing clinical research that made his experience possible. They created the Sarris Clinical Endowment — the first of its kind at the Starzl Institute — to support these clinical advances. This fund will ensure that more improvements in care will bring better outcomes to future generations of patients. And that truly is a very sweet gift.

Frank Sarris passed away in 2010, and his family maintains strong ties to the Starzl Institute to this day.