Love Comes Full Circle

A team led by Andre Machado, MD, PhD, Chair of the Neurological Institute and holder of the Charles and Christine Carroll Family Endowed Chair in Functional Neurosurgery, performs deep brain stimulation surgery. | Photo: Stephen Travarca

For Adam and Sally DeFrancesco, their love for Cleveland Clinic coincided with falling in love with each other. 

Smiling middle aged couple blond woman wearing black cocktail dress man wearing black tuxedo

Sally and Adam DeFrancesco are passionate supporters of neurological care, research and education at Cleveland Clinic. 

While they were both in college and working together in the admitting department at Cleveland Clinic, Adam and Sally initially bonded over a shared interest in business ideas. As their friendship evolved, so did their appreciation for Cleveland Clinic. 

“We gained an insight into just how many people come from all around the world to visit Cleveland Clinic,” Sally says. 

During their time working for the health system, they saw the construction of the Crile Building, which everyone referred to as the “pyramid” building before it had an official name. Little did they know it would foreshadow their future. 

The DeFrancescos have supported various initiatives at Cleveland Clinic for more than a decade. They recently became members of Cleveland Clinic’s Pyramid Legacy Society, which honors those who have made a future commitment to advancing medicine and supporting patient care, research and education through their testamentary plans. 

Adam and Sally are both passionate about their support for Cleveland Clinic’s Neurological Institute. Both of them have family members who experienced neurological challenges. 

“Watching my mother battle Parkinson’s disease for so many years, it was hard to see her deal with such challenges,” Sally says.

Her mother underwent deep brain stimulation treatment at Cleveland Clinic. “It gave her an extra 10 years,” Sally says. “It really helped. She passed away at 88, but she had a good long life, even after living with Parkinson’s for more than 20 years.”

Sally also has a brother who receives treatment at Cleveland Clinic for multiple sclerosis.

Adam has become a vocal advocate for mental health care after seeing his father struggle for years with severe depression. “There is still a stigma around mental health,” he says. “Nobody wants to have their name associated with mental health initiatives, but in reality, it affects a high percentage of every family. If you’re in a room with 10 people, probably three or four of them are struggling, maybe with addiction or some type of mental mood disorder or mental illness. It’s something we need to talk about and raise awareness for.”

Adam is CEO of OMNI Systems, a custom label converter and label supplier company. Sally serves on the OMNI Systems board. They split their time between Cleveland and Naples, Florida.

The couple is happy to have the opportunity to leave a legacy at Cleveland Clinic, the place where it all began, recognizing the hospital as the go-to destination for unparalleled medical care.

“When the chips are really down, there’s really one place to turn, and that’s Cleveland Clinic,” Adam says. “There’s a reason for that.”