Volunteer Spotlight

Saryn and Jonathan Dietz Continue a Tradition of Giving

Members of The Cary Council share why advancing research at UT Southwestern is important to their generation

For Jonathan Dedman Dietz and his wife, Saryn, giving back to UT Southwestern Medical Center is all in the family.

They learned by example. Mr. Dietz’s grandfather was Robert Dedman Sr., a Dallas businessman and avid golfer who turned a passion for the sport into the golf resort empire ClubCorp. Mr. Dedman's belief in giving back became a core value for his family and a central tenet of The Dedman Foundation, which he founded. The Foundation's longtime support of UT Southwestern has impacted the career trajectory of more than 30 promising early-career physicians through the Dedman Family Endowed Program for Scholars in Clinical Care.

Saryn and Jonathan Dietz
Saryn and Jonathan Dietz Eric Williamson/​UT Southwestern Medical Center

Carrying on their family’s tradition of generosity, the couple hosted last year’s “An Evening with DocStars,” The Cary Council’s annual event for young professionals interested in supporting research at UT Southwestern. A partnership between the Medical Center and Southwestern Medical Foundation, The Cary Council has awarded 18 grants to accelerate the work of early-career investigators since 2017. Members refer to the grant recipients as “DocStars.”

The couple took time to share why volunteerism continues to be such an important value for their family and why they connect so deeply with The Cary Council’s mission of connecting the next generation of Dallas civic leaders with the mission of UT Southwestern.

How has UT Southwestern impacted you and your family?

Mr. Dietz: For more than three decades my family has championed UT Southwestern’s mission of providing unique opportunities for faculty and expanding the hospital’s reach into the community. My grandfather, Robert Dedman, saw the importance of promoting health and a healthy society, and I feel honored to continue my family’s partnership with UT Southwestern.

What distinguishes this institution as a national leader in academic medicine?

Mrs. Dietz: UT Southwestern is a leader in transforming research into treatments and therapies, and its partnership with Southwestern Medical Foundation is impressive. My engagement with The Cary Council has given me a firsthand opportunity to see the impact Southwestern Medical Foundation makes in advancing early-stage research at UT Southwestern.

What have you learned about UT Southwestern?

Mr. Dietz: UT Southwestern strives to ensure that every patient receives the highest level of patient-centered care. Early in the COVID-19 pandemic, when my father, Mark Dietz, experienced severe complications and needed to spend 3 weeks relying on a ventilator. UT Southwestern was a critical resource supporting my father during his recovery. Without it, my father’s quality of health would not be where it is today.

Members of the Dietz and Dedman families with UT Southwestern faculty who have been recognized as Dedman Scholars
The 2022 and 2023 Dedman Family Scholars in Clinical Care stand with representatives of the Dedman family and Southwestern Medical Foundation at an event at UT Southwestern Medical Center on December 7, 2023. Pictured are, from left, Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine Rina Mauricio, M.D., Assistant Professor of Urology Xiaosong Meng, M.D., Ph.D., Southwestern Medical Foundation President and CEO Michael T. McMahan, The Dedman Foundation President Robert "Bob" Dedman Jr., The Dedman Foundation Vice President Rachael Dedman, Nancy McMillan Dedman, Jonathan Dietz, Saryn Dietz, Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology Jessica Grubman, M.D., and Assistant Professor of Surgery Madhukar Patel, M.D., M.B.A., SC.M. Eric Williamson/​UT Southwestern Medical Center

As a donor, why do you continue to give?

Mr. Dietz: Talented and innovative faculty and staff set UT Southwestern apart, and it is important that we invest in them. Through the Dedman Family Endowed Program for Scholars in Clinical Care at UT Southwestern and The Cary Council’s grants for advancing early-stage research, our family has chosen to support efforts that will propel the next generation of physician-scientists into the future of medicine and ensure UT Southwestern remains a recognized research leader.

Since its founding, The Cary Council has helped attract more than $13 million in follow-on funding to research projects at UT Southwestern. It is incredibly rewarding to know that the support we provide through The Cary Council is having a compounding impact on early-stage medical research.

What is UT Southwestern's biggest contribution to the community?

Mrs. Dietz: UT Southwestern is focused solely on their patients' well-being, and this, in turn, contributes to a healthier and happier community. Such a patient-centered mindset creates a better experience for those in need, as UT Southwestern brings together physicians, social workers, and patient navigators. This mindset, coupled with the institution’s focus on medical research and advancements, makes UT Southwestern a huge asset to Dallas and North Texas. It is creating better treatments for patients, and therefore better lives. We are incredibly lucky to have them in our own backyard.