A successful businessman and leader of philanthropic efforts throughout the United States, Joseph H. Kanter
is a longtime supporter of efforts to improve public health.
In 1964, he established the Joseph H. Kanter Foundation, which has backed health care research, educational institutions and a variety of other charitable endeavors.
In 1986, the Kanter Foundation established the National Fitness and Jogging Center, located on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. In 1998, Kanter created the Health Legacy Partnership, a private-public partnership between The Joseph H. Kanter Family Foundation and the federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, to develop a national database of medical treatment information.
To be available on the Web, the database will give patients and doctors statistically reliable information to consider when they weigh options for treating diagnosed illnesses.
"I believe that every citizen of this great Republic has the inalienable right to know what medicine knows or doesn't know about his
disease and to have access to detailed data on what works in treating it," Kanter
Building a national outcomes database is a big job, Kanter
acknowledges, but he
sees great need for a source of hard data about what works in medicine, and he
doesn't shy from a task.
"I guess I was born asking questions, seeking challenges, and never, never, never giving up," he
Mr. Kanter was born Nov. 15, 1923, in Tarrant, Alabama.
He attended the University of Alabama and Georgetown University.
During World War II, he
was in the infantry, landed on Omaha Beach and fought through France, Holland, and Germany.
father's death, while Kanter
was overseas, he
returned to his
native Alabama, ran the family general store, and began buying land for apartment developments.
went on to build one of the nation's largest apartment construction and community development companies, with projects in Alabama, Ohio, Indiana, New York, Florida and other states.
Real Estate Research considered him the largest viable new town developer in the country.
"new town" developments included Greenbelt, MD, the first large-scale planned community in the Washington, D.C. suburbs, and Forest Park, Ohio and Lauderhill, Florida.
became a major landholder in Southeast Florida and ultimately settled in Miami.
He was Chairman and owner of National Bank of Florida and is currently Chairman of the Kanter Companies whose multiple interests include banking and real estate.
Kanter also is Chairman of Kanter Productions and was the producer of the movie "Ironweed," starring Jack Nicholson and Meryl Streep.
bought the movie rights to the book just before it won the 1984 Pulitzer Prize for fiction.
Mr. Kanter has been involved in the work of the United Jewish Appeal for many years, serving formerly as its national Chairman and on its executive committee.
Also, he was President and Chairman of the National Conference on Citizenship, a non-partisan public foundation chartered by Congress that promotes civic participation and civil dialogue.
married Nancy Reed in 1953.