Cleveland Clinic’s Respiratory Institute has received a $2 million gift from Macon and Joan Brock — Macon Brock, one of the original founders of Dollar Tree, received a double lung transplant at Cleveland Clinic in September 2014 due to idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.

The gift will establish The Macon and Joan Brock Endowed Chair, which will support lung transplant research and education, according to a Cleveland Clinic news release.

Marie Budev, DO, MPH, the medical director of the Cleveland Clinic’s Lung and Heart-Lung Transplant Program, will be the inaugural chair holder.

“I would like to express my gratitude to Dr Budev and the entire team at Cleveland Clinic, including the post-operation team that cared for me after a complication put me back in the hospital for several months. Without them, I’m not sure I would have pulled through,” said Brock. “Transplantation is not something most people think about until, unfortunately, they have to, but it affects a person and their family in such a profound way, essentially offering a second chance at life. It’s my hope and my wife’s that through this gift, other patients in similar situations will helped and given the same second chance that I was.”

Mr. Brock co-founded Dollar Tree in 1986 and has been its Chairman since September 2001. He served as its Chief Executive Officer from 1993 to 2003 and President from 1986 to 2001.

“The Brock family has seen firsthand the impact of organ donation and transplantation,” said Dr Budev. “There is still so much to discover in the areas of pulmonary medicine and lung transplantation, and we are so thankful to have the Brocks’ support and dedication to the field. Their generosity will undoubtedly touch countless lives.”

Averaging around 100 lung transplants per year, Cleveland Clinic has proven to be a national leader in lung transplant, both in terms of patient volumes and successful outcomes.  The transplant program has established a reputation for accepting and transplanting challenging, complex patients and still holds the world record for most lung transplants in a single year.

There are currently about 1,400 people in the US waiting for a lung transplant.

This is the second chair to be endowed to the Respiratory Institute’s lung transplant program in the last year. The other, the Buoncore Family Endowed Chair in Lung Transplantation, is held by Atul Mehta, M.D. Cleveland Clinic’s Respiratory Institute is ranked No. 3 by U.S. News & World Report.