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Christine Schuster, CEO, Emerson Hospital
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Corporator Development Office Update

The Annual Appeal Surpasses Its Goal Thanks to Generous Challenge

Emerson surpassed its $1.1 million goal set for the 2013 Annual Appeal, and support by corporators helped make it happen.  “We were very happy to have support from 73 percent of our corporators this year,” says Diane Chellis, assistant director of Emerson Health Care Foundation.  “They contributed $267,000.”

A $150,000 challenge was put forth by two generous board members.  “This inspired increased giving,” notes Ms. Chellis.  “Approximately 50 percent of Annual Appeal donors increased their giving because of the challenge.”
 Steve Carr, outgoing chair of the Annual Appeal Committee, and Lynn Martin, the new chair, announced the final tally at Emerson’s annual donor recognition event, which was held on October 10.  The committee played an important role in the successful fundraising endeavor.

“Committee members joined us for a phonathon on September 10, where we made year-end calls on behalf of the Annual Appeal,” Ms. Chellis explains.  “Their efforts paid off, because we raised $19,000 that night.  It was a fun evening, especially for Joan Perera, who won the door prize—a bottle of wine—again!”

In addition to Mr. Carr and Ms. Martin, the committee includes Daisy Crane, Charles Denault, John Hickling, Ron Johnson, Jeanne Kangas, John LaMothe, Joan Perera, Paul Purchia, Cynthia Sechrest and Robert Segal.

Ms. Sechrest opened her Acton home and fabulous garden for a house party on September 12.  Joseph Bergen, DO, Emerson’s chief of emergency medicine, made a presentation at the well-attended event, which was attended by donors and corporators who live in Acton.

“We count on the corporators, because they are one of our core constituencies,” says Ms. Chellis.  “Year after year, they meet the challenge.”

New fundraising priorities are being identified

The Annual Appeal is a key component of Emerson’s development program.  However, generous gifts directed to clinical areas also are important.  Earlier this year, a generous, $1 million gift from Howard Boeske, a retired Maynard businessman, capped Emerson’s fundraising campaign for the radiation oncology center, which surpassed its $4 million goal.  The center is now known as the Boeske Radiation Oncology Center.

“New fundraising priorities will be identified by the hospital’s Strategic Planning Task Force, whose work is now underway,” says Melissa Saalfield, major gifts officer.  The task force includes physicians, board members and hospital administrators and is chaired by Paul Birch, who is vice-chair of the board and chair of the Finance Committee.

“Emerson has a precedent for matching donors with important outpatient services,” she adds.  The Elizabeth Smith Agarwal Diabetes Center and Mary C. Winter Anticoagulation Clinic are just two examples.

At the moment, development staff are hoping to attract support for Emerson’s Center for Sports Rehabilitation & Specialty Services—a highly successful program that provides physical and occupational therapy, as well as speech and language therapy and specialized care for children and adults, including those needing spine and cancer rehabilitation.  The center has satellites at the Westford Health Center, where the facility recently was expanded, and at the Thoreau Club in Concord, where center rehabilitation staff work with club members. 

The Center for Sports Rehabilitation & Specialty Services will relocate to 310 Baker Avenue in Concord this winter—an opportunity for expanded programs.  “They will deliver all the care they already provide, such as rehabilitation for heart failure, swallowing problems and Parkinson’s disease, as well as the concussion clinic, and move into new therapeutic areas,” says Ms. Saalfield.  “With financial support, the center can accomplish even more.”