The Cooper Institute

Founded in 1970 by the "Father of Aerobics"
Kenneth H. Cooper MD, MPH


Living Legacy: Amy Meyer Barrentine Remembers Her Father

Written by
Amber Freeland
Posted in

Thursday, Apr 04, 2019

Our founding trustee, the late Fred Meyer, understood the importance of legacy to future generations. 

As the founding trustee and CEO of The Cooper Institute, Meyer understood the importance of service. He also shared our passion for fitness and healthy living. Meyer began running in the 1960s, and became an advocate of the work of Dr. Kenneth H. Cooper in the early 70s.

“Dad always gave a sizeable portion of his income to the causes he believed in and The Cooper Institute was primary in his giving selections,” said Amy Meyer Barrentine, Meyer’s daughter. “He wanted our country to improve childhood fitness levels and reduce the financial and physical burden of diabetes, heart disease and age-related decline.” 



His $1 million gift allowed the The Cooper Institute to lay the foundation for The Meyer Society Planned Giving program, inspiring others to build our endowment into a sustaining legacy of life-changing research and education. 

“He felt strongly that the work done here would have a meaningful and lasting impact on generations to come,” said Barrentine, who serves as the honorary chair for the The Meyer Society.

The Meyer Society Lecture Series was born out of this desire to make a lasting impact. This dynamic, speaker-driven event aims to increase high-level engagement and education. 

The inaugural event featured William H. McRaven, former Chancellor of the University of Texas and retired Navy admiral, sharing his powerful story of the impact of fitness in his life. 

This year, we are proud to feature Margaret Spellings at the Meyer Society Lecture Series. Spellings is the former president of the University of North Carolina System and U.S. Secretary of Education under President George W. Bush. She is now a senior consultant at Texas 2036, a nonpartisan initiative to ensure the long-term success of Texas through data-driven, long-range policy development.

The event will be moderated by U.S. Ambassador Jeanne L. Phillips, the senior vice president of corporate engagement and international relations for Hunt Consolidated, Inc. She is also on the board of trustees for The Cooper Institute.

The Meyer Society Lecture Series will be held May 9 at The Cooper Institute from 7:00 - 8:30 p.m. 

Tickets available online at

For more information and sponsorship opportunities contact Amy Johnson at or 214.543.6533.

Read More about The Cooper Institute in the recent Cooper Quarterly Newsletter - Spring Edition