Taylor Baker of the Tampa General Hospital Foundation Honored for Healthcare Philanthropy Leadership

Published: Aug 9, 2023

Baker, the Tampa General Hospital Foundation’s Senior Director of Development, was recognized by the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy for excellence in leadership and commitment to philanthropy.

Tampa, FL (August 9, 2023) – Tampa General Hospital (TGH) has announced that Taylor Baker, senior director of development for the Tampa General Hospital Foundation, has been recognized by the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy (AHP) as a member of their “40 Under 40” class. Baker’s recognition by the AHP reflects her leadership in advancing the Tampa General Hospital Heart & Vascular Institute and Women’s and Children’s Institute through philanthropic outreach and engagement.

“Taylor is an emerging leader making a tremendous impact within our organization. Her approach to engaging our patients and the broader community has directly contributed to the advancement of our mission to heal, teach, innovate, and care for everyone,” said John Couris, president and CEO of Tampa General Hospital. “We are proud to see her contributions recognized by the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy and look forward to continuing to experience firsthand how her work forging connections translates to ongoing improvements in innovation, care delivery, and patient experience.”

Baker joined Tampa General in 2019 and has since grown philanthropy for the TGH Heart & Vascular Institute from $50,000 a year to more than $6 million over four years. In her current role as the senior director of Development, Taylor supports the implementation and scaling of novel programs with funds raised through the TGH Foundation, including various centers of excellence within the Heart & Vascular Institute and the Neonatal Exposure program which helps babies born with Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome, a group of conditions caused when an infant withdraws from certain drugs following exposure in the womb before birth.

“As part of the team driving Tampa General’s philanthropy efforts, Taylor has made significant contributions to the Heart & Vascular Institute, the Women’s Institute and the Children’s Hospital and their ability to meet their strategic goals and the ongoing delivery of high quality, safe, and empathetic care to patients,” said Frann Leppla, president of the Tampa General Hospital Foundation. “Taylor is a strong, humble leader and collaborator, and we are constantly impressed by her talent for fostering an emotional connection between our external stakeholders and our staff and patients.”

During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Baker helped to lead a system-wide initiative to provide meals to Tampa General’s front-line team members twice a day, five days a week, at no cost to them. The effort was born out of a donor’s vision to show appreciation to health care workers and resulted in a $150,000 donation to fund the food distribution initiative under Baker’s direction. In her current role, Baker applies for and facilitates the allocation of grants and gifts to the foundation, including the grant from PetSmart Charities and private donors that funded the creation of the TGH Children’s Hospital’s animal-assisted therapy program for pediatric patients.

Her ongoing support has resulted in onsite presence of two facility dogs, Belle, and Millie, who are accompanied by Child Life Specialists and trained to incorporate their services into patient visits. Belle and Millie provide companionship and comfort during minor procedures and scans to increase patients’ feelings of security, well-being, and comfort. Beyond pediatric patients, Belle and Millie bring smiles to the faces of patient family members and hospital team members. “It’s a privilege to engage with our community on behalf of our organization to support our staff, our patients, and their loved ones,” Baker said. “I am honored to receive this recognition, which is also a testament to the Tampa General Hospital Foundation’s commitment to heal, teach, innovate, and care for everyone, through philanthropy.”

The Association of Healthcare Philanthropy 40 Under 40 program recognizes 40 young professionals shaping the future of healthcare philanthropy annually. The full list of the 2023 40 Under 40 class can be found here.