Horizons Spring 2014

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Spring 2014 M e r c y f o u n d at i o n


Inspiring Philanthropy. Changing Lives.

Mercy Foundation awards grants to help meet community needs | 4

President’s message Mercy Foundation and Dignity Health recently celebrated the long-awaited opening of the Alex G. Spanos Heart & Vascular Center at Mercy General Hospital. As we commemorated this occasion, I was caught up in the genuine excitement and enthusiasm of those involved. Sisters of Mercy, Mercy Foundation donors, health care providers, administrators, staff and community members all expressed true joy in seeing this dream become a reality. The result is a state-ofthe-art facility that will be a home of lifesaving, compassionate care for decades.

Sister Kathleen Horgan, RSM (right), leads Faye Spanos (to the left) and Spanos family members on a tour of the heart center at Mercy General Hospital.

Philanthropic support vital to new Alex G. Spanos Heart & Vascular Center On April 14, the Alex G. Spanos Heart & Vascular Center at Mercy General Hospital opened its doors to patients. Philanthropic supporters, including past patients and community members, were essential to the completion of the Spanos Center. To date, $22.8 million in charitable gifts have been contributed to the project. “The remarkable philanthropic support really speaks to the stature of the heart and vascular program at Mercy General Hospital,” says Kevin Duggan, president and CEO of Mercy Foundation. “Our generous donors recognize the impact this remarkable program has had and will continue to have on our community.” The lead gift came from Stockton businessman and philanthropist Alex G. Spanos. Mr. Spanos was a patient at Mercy General, undergoing a coronary artery bypass surgery. The quality of care he received motivated him to pledge $15 million – one of the largest donations ever made to a Sacramento hospital. The gift from the Spanos family has inspired more than 500 other individuals and families to support the project. Alex's son, Dean, says the opening of the Spanos Center will mark the beginning of this chapter of his father’s legacy. “We are extremely pleased to celebrate with the Mercy Continued on page 2

On a sadder note, in April we experienced the significant loss of long-time Mercy Foundation and Sisters of Mercy friend, Neva Cimaroli. For nearly 30 years, Neva and her late husband, Sevy, generously supported numerous Sisters of Mercy ministries through Mercy Foundation. Neva was known by many as a successful businesswoman, but more so for her generosity, charisma and the happiness she brought to others. As we celebrate her life, may we all be as triumphant as Neva in experiencing the abundant joy of giving to benefit others. Thank you for your ongoing support of Mercy Foundation. May this spring be filled with health and happiness for you and your loved ones.

President and CEO

Partners in Philanthropy

M e r c y f o u n d at i o n

community and the region the grand opening of the Alex G. Spanos Heart & Vascular Center. It’s an amazing facility and we are proud to have played a role in making it possible. It was my father’s deepest wish and hope that patients at the new cardiac center would receive the best care and that no one would be turned away because of lack of space. This is really a dream come true.” During the week of April 7, a number of commemorative events were held in the new Spanos Center to celebrate this significant milestone, including “Blessings of the Hands” for hospital staff; a Mercy Foundation reception for major donors; a blessing by Bishop Jamie Soto; a reception for physicians; the dedication of the new park on the Mercy General Hospital campus, named after Mercy Foundation donor Agnes Anderson; and a Community Open House that attracted more than 500 guests from the neighborhood. The Spanos Center builds upon the foundation of excellence that has made Dignity Health a proven leader in cardiovascular care. Equipped with state-of-the-art technology, and supported by a patient-centered healing environment, this new world-class facility will serve Northern California well into the future.

Clockwise from left: Sheila Inks (left) and Sister Katherine Doyle, RSM, enjoy catching up at the Mercy Foundation donor reception; Agnes Anderson is joined by John McIntyre, Mercy Foundation Chief Philanthropy Officer, as she unveils the signage for Anderson Park, named in her honor and located on the Mercy General Hospital campus; Joan and Richard Gann attend an Open House for business leaders and residents of East Sacramento.


Bishop Jamie Soto is accompanied by Father John Healy as he blesses the hallways of the Alex G. Spanos Heart & Vascular Center.

To learn more about the many ways you can support the Alex G. Spanos Heart & Vascular Center and other works of the Sisters of Mercy, please call Mercy Foundation at (916) 851.2700.

The Sisters of Mercy

M e r c y f o u n d at i o n

Sister Kathleen Horgan: A lasting impact volunteers at the main lobby Information Desk four days a week, she is also the facility’s Sister liaison. Her community outreach includes serving on the board of the Sacramento Food Bank and Family Services and in helping with various Mercy Foundation projects to help raise funds for Sisters of Mercy ministries in the greater Sacramento area. Before joining Mercy General in 1992, Sister Kathleen had a career in education, serving as a teacher and principal. When the call came to serve in the Sisters of Mercy’s health care ministry, she readily agreed. Prior to her current role, Sister Kathleen held various positions at Mercy General, including that of Mission Services director. Sister Kathleen Horgan, RSM, has been a familiar face at Mercy General Hospital for more than two decades – her smile and lilting voice, with just a hint of Ireland, are recognized throughout the facility. Typically found working with the

Sister Kathleen says the best part of her work is meeting people. Several years ago, she got to know a heart patient and his wife. “I did not recognize the name, I just enjoyed talking with them while he was hospitalized.” It turned out the patient was Alex G. Spanos, founder of

the AG Spanos Companies. He and his family were so appreciative of his care, and so touched by the people they met at Mercy General, that he made a $15 million pledge toward constructing what has become the recently opened Alex G. Spanos Heart & Vascular Center. “The new facility is just incredible – the private rooms are fantastic and the technology is world class,” Sister Kathleen says. “The new chapel, designed by Father Thomas Lucas, SJ, whose mother was on the staff at Mercy General for many years, is also an inspirational place that will bring great comfort to all who visit.” Sister Kathleen says her most meaningful moments at Mercy General have been the private ones she has shared with staff and patients over the years. “I am truly grateful to God that He brought me here,” she says. “The work being done here is truly the mission of Mercy and God’s work.”

Donations in action: Mercy MS Achievement Center opens People in and around the Sacramento region living with multiple sclerosis (MS) now have a new and valuable resource available to them, thanks to the Mercy MS Achievement Center operated through Dignity Health Neurological Institute of Northern California. The Center was made possible by a generous grant facilitated by Mercy Foundation from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation. The Mercy MS Achievement Center opened in February of this year in a 3,343-square-foot facility on Greenback Lane in Citrus Heights. The Center provides day wellness programs for those living with MS, with a focus on physical, emotional and cognitive wellness as well as health education. The services available at the Center include longterm opportunities for fitness, cognitive activities, recreation and social support. The MS Achievement Center currently serves patients one day a week with plans to add an additional day within the next few months. Philanthropic support will be critical in expanding and maintaining this vital service.

Brian Hutchinson works with patient Valerie Talley at the Mercy MS Achievement Center.

Brian Hutchinson, PT, MSCS, an MS specialist who is nationally known for his work in developing health and wellness programs for people with MS, serves as the Director of the MS Achievement Center. “The Center offers an important adjunct to existing neurological care by addressing areas often underserved, but extremely important, to people living with MS.” The success of the MS Achievement Center is facilitated by affiliation with other organizations such as the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, as well as through the financial support of Mercy Foundation donors. “Because wellness services are not typically reimbursable services, we rely on the generosity of our partners and donors to provide these important programs,” explains Brian.


Ministry News

M e r c y f o u n d at i o n

Mercy Foundation donors help meet community needs Mercy Foundation awarded $652,759 to 13 unique programs in our community through the Mercy Ministries Grant Program. The grant program awards funds each year to local organizations whose work focuses on one of the ministries of the Sisters of Mercy – care for the poor and elderly; education; health care or housing. “The Mercy Ministries Grant Program began more than 20 years ago,” says Trisha Pena, Mercy Foundation director of finance. “The grants are yet another way the Sisters of Mercy work to affect change in our community, particularly for those who may be underserved.” Funding for the grants is made possible by Mercy Foundation’s many generous donors, specifically those who have given unrestricted donations earmarked to be used “where the need is greatest.” In addition, interest income from certain endowments is added to the grant fund. This year, grants awarded ranged from $5,000 to $75,000. Grant recipients must be ministries of the Sisters of Mercy, including programs at or associated with the four Sacramento-area Dignity Health hospitals. “The ideal Mercy Ministries Grant recipient is one that fills an important void in the community,” explains Trisha. “Through this program, we are not only able to provide programmatic support, but also to catalyze new programs that ultimately will become self-sustaining.” Among this year’s organizations receiving grants are Cristo Rey High School Sacramento; Mercy Housing; Sacramento Loaves & Fishes; Mercy McMahon Terrace; and several programs within Dignity Health’s Sacramento-area hospitals.

Mercy Ministries Grants – A closer look at two beneficiaries Mercy Ministries Grants support a variety of programs in our community working to improve health care, housing, education and care for the poor and elderly. Here’s a look at two of this year’s grant recipients. Sacramento Loaves & Fishes: Mercy Corps

Mercy Hospital of Folsom: Serving the Unique Family

Sacramento Loaves & Fishes is a non-profit organization supported by Mercy Foundation that serves our community’s homeless through a variety of services and programs. Led by Sister Libby Fernandez, RSM, Loaves & Fishes brings to life a spirit of love, hospitality and generosity to those seeking assistance.

The staff of Mercy Hospital of Folsom delivers hundreds of babies annually. Some of these babies are born into families created through adoption. Knowing how to care for the birth mothers as well as the adoptive families can be challenging without the right support. The Mercy Folsom Family Birth Center leadership created a new program entitled “Serving the Unique Family” to better meet that need.

The Loaves & Fishes workforce includes volunteers from Mercy Corps. Mercy Corps members commit a year of their time following college graduation to serve others. “Our Mercy Corps volunteer members not only do the ‘Works of Mercy’ daily, they share our Mercy Charism through prayer, spiritual sharing and community life,” says Sister Libby. While the Mercy Corps volunteers save Loaves & Fishes the cost of hiring additional employees, they are not without expense. The financial support of the Mercy Ministries Grant will cover the cost of housing, food, transportation and other minor expenses for Mercy Corps volunteers.


The Mercy Ministries Grant will fund training for the Family Birth Center registered nurses and support staff, enabling them to better care for patients and parents in navigating the complex scenarios adoption presents. “This program will serve the Sisters of Mercy’s goal of providing the best health care possible by improving the supportive care we provide to patients and families in unique family situations,” says Kristi Svee-Stranberg, director of Mercy Hospital of Folsom’s Family Birth Center.

Partners in Philanthropy

M e r c y f o u n d at i o n

Employees Lend a Hand: Enhancing the healing environment through music On a daily basis, Robin Rogness, a seasoned MBA and Mercy Hospital of Folsom’s Chief Financial Officer, operates within a practiced set of analytical rules.

Robin Rogness designates his donations for the Music Ministry Program at Mercy Folsom, enabling certified harpists to bring soothing music to critically ill patients.

So, his selection of the Music Ministry Program as the beneficiary of his Employees Lend a Hand (ELAH) donation sheds light on a multifaceted man. Robin has a longstanding appreciation for music, finding renewal, respite and a creative outlet playing classical guitar since the early 1970s.

Robin found a vocation in Catholic health care more than two decades ago. When he joined Mercy Folsom in 1993, he began making donations to Mercy Foundation almost immediately. “Working here has been a perfect fit for me,” he says reflectively. At the time, his contributions were allocated to where the need was greatest. Last year, Robin paired his commitment to the Sisters of Mercy’s health care ministry with his passion for music by designating his donations for the Music Ministry Program at Mercy Folsom. The program, coordinated through Sister Mary Cornelius O’Connor, RSM, brings soothing harp music to patients in the hospital to help enhance the healing environment. Officially known as Certified Music Practitioners, harpists who are trained and certified work one-on-one with critically ill patients, closely watching physical responses to their music and altering it accordingly to help patients rest, lessen their anxiety and get them through difficult procedures. Robin recalls how the music affected a terminally ill patient who initially refused a visit from the harpist. Upon hearing the music resonating in the hallway, he had a change of heart and requested that the harpist return. Sister Cornelius says, “It is such a blessing for patients. They are relieved from their worries when they get into the rhythm of the music.”

Mercy Ministries Grant awardees

Leaving a legacy

AWARDEE: AMOUNT: Cristo Rey High School Sacramento – Student resources


Cristo Rey High School Sacramento – Student financial aid


Mercy Education


Mercy Housing California


Sacramento Loaves & Fishes – Mercy Corps Volunteers $38,000 Sacramento Loaves & Fishes – Mustard Seed School


Bruceville Terrace Skilled Nursing Facility

$ 5,000

Mercy McMahon Terrace – Memory Care Unit


Mercy/Methodist Family Medicine Residency Program $10,300 Dignity Health Neurological Institute


Dignity Health Heart & Vascular Institute


Mercy Hospital of Folsom – Serving the Unique Family $36,200

You can create a legacy by making a planned gift to Mercy Foundation to support a Sisters of Mercy ministry or program of most importance to you. Some plans can increase your cash flow, offer valuable income-tax deductions, and reduce or eliminate estate taxes. Your planned gift will help provide health care, education, affordable housing and other vital services for those in need. If you have included Mercy Foundation in your estate plan, please let us know so we can thank you and recognize you with membership in the Mercy Legacy Society. For more information about making a planned gift, or to request a personal gift illustration, please call Kevin Duggan at (916) 851-2703. You can also visit the planned giving section of our Web site at supportmercyfoundation.org.


Partners in Philanthropy

M e r c y f o u n d at i o n

The Read family makes an intergenerational commitment to Mercy

Philanthropy has been a vital part of Mark Read’s family for three generations. In fact, he, his father and his grandfather have all served on the Mercy Foundation Board. “Our family has always felt the importance and the need to give back to others. That’s what our faith and community are all about,” says Mark. Fred W. Read served as Chair of the Mercy Foundation Board in 1963; Rod Read served as a Board Member from 1992-2006 and became a Life Member in 2006; and Mark joined the board in 2009 and is the current Board Chair.

Cristo Rey High School's first graduating class will graduate from college this year.

In 1953, Mark’s father began Rod Read and Sons Construction; today, the company is managed by Mark and his two brothers. Their hard work has led to a success that Mark generously shares with others. He and his wife, Patty, support local organizations focused on issues they are passionate about, particularly education and the underserved.

Several years ago, Mark and Patty saw a need: There were no high quality educational opportunities for children from Sacramento’s underserved neighborhoods. Mark participated in a feasibility study which led to the creation of Cristo Rey High School Sacramento. While earning a college-preparation-focused high school degree, Cristo Rey students participate in a unique work-study program, learning professional work skills and generating income to offset the cost of their education. “This year, Cristo Rey’s first graduating class will be graduating from college. That school is really breaking the cycle of poverty,” Mark says. He currently is assisting the school with a capital campaign to establish a much-needed new campus. Mark is confident that his family’s philanthropic values will live on with his two grown children, both of whom are already active with organizations meaningful to them. Mark and Patty also believe strongly in the importance of including philanthropic wishes in estate plans. “Our will includes the Sisters of Mercy. We know that some day we will be gone and we want our support for their important work to continue.” One more way the Read family’s giving spirit will live on for generations to come.

Gifts in memory of a loved one Many people appreciate the opportunity to express their sympathy through a charitable donation that will have a lasting impact. Memorial gifts provide a meaningful way for others to honor your loved one. We are sincerely grateful for those families who request donations be made to Mercy Foundation in the memory of a loved one. Earlier this year, Mark Read’s beloved mother, Nancy Read, passed away. As a testament to the Read family’s impact on the community and others, more than 50 gifts to Mercy Foundation were received in Nancy’s memory. These gifts help create a lasting legacy of caring and compassion. Thank you! Mark and Patty Read (left) continue the commitment to philanthropy instilled by his parents, Rod and Nancy Read, who are shown here in this family portrait from several years ago.


For more information about directing gifts to Mercy Foundation in memory of a loved one, please call (916) 851-2700.

Family-advised fund honors parents’ wishes, inspires hope for future Reaching consensus among nine opinionated adults sitting at the same table can be challenging. But Pat and Mary Claire Leonard would not be surprised that their children listened to them and reached accord. “Their commitment to one another and to family was the centerpiece of their lives,” says oldest son Pat Leonard. The nine Leonard children became the first generation to implement a Mercy Foundation family-advised fund established in Patrick and Mary Claire Leonard’s names. They have selected Sacramento Loaves & Fishes’ Mustard Seed School and Cristo Rey High School Sacramento as joint recipients of the fund’s 2013 allocation.

The nine Leonard children, June 2013 – from left to right: Jim and Mike (standing), Beth, Mary (top/back row), Nancy, Pat and John (standing), Kathy and Eileen (front center).

If you would like more information about how to establish a family-advised fund at Mercy Foundation, please call (916) 851-2703.

for as little as $25,000 and have tax advantages afforded to public charities by the IRS.

“Our parents, who were raised during the Depression, were disciplined and had strong work ethics,” adds son Mike Leonard, who lives in Sacramento with this family. “Through example, they taught us the value of hard work, education and the importance of self-reliance. They were both grateful to, among others, our high school teachers, who were role models and reinforced the values of Christian service.”

The nine adult Leonard children spent part of their 2013 summer reunion acting as their familyadvised fund administrators. Their goal: To ensure that the fund would honor the spirit of their parents’ memory, their shared love for the works of the Sisters of Mercy, and provide a perpetual source of funding focused on “the health, welfare and education of children,” as Patrick and Mary Claire specified in their wills.

Unlike endowments, family-advised funds empower families to work together to make a difference while building a generational culture of philanthropy for years to come. Families can award grants based on their personal values, beliefs, and philanthropic goals. They can be established through Mercy Foundation

“We’ve been blessed and have a responsibility to share that blessing,” says Mike. “Looking back today, we see our parents’ wisdom. It is our hope that the family–advised fund will grow to benefit future generations as it continues to honor our parents’ wishes.”

Providing resources for children in need Mary Claire Leonard’s passion for the welfare of children and volunteerism is what guided her own adult children’s decision to allocate their Mercy Foundation 2013 family-advised funds to Sacramento Loaves & Fishes’ Mustard Seed School and Cristo Rey High School Sacramento. Through the years, Mary Claire volunteered countless hours at Loaves & Fishes, which also operates Mustard Seed School for homeless children ages 3-15. Executive Director Sister Libby Fernandez, RSM, is so grateful to the Leonards for their generosity. Leonard family-advised funds are supporting mental health counseling services provided by a therapist who meets with the children attending Mustard Seed School. At Cristo Rey High School Sacramento, funds from the Leonard family have been applied to financial aid so students in need can attend the work-study high school in preparation for college. Sister Eileen Enright, RSM, president at Cristo Rey, echoes Sr. Libby’s gratitude to the Leonard family for their longtime support of education and the works of the Sisters of Mercy in the Sacramento community.


Non Profit US Postage Paid Sacramento, CA Permit #296 3400 Data Drive Rancho Cordova, CA 95670 SupportMercyFoundation.org

2013–14 Mercy Foundation Board of Trustees Officers


Mark Read Chair

Jose Abad, MD Gene Bassett Brenda W. Davis Costanzo DiPerna, MD Roxanne Elliott Sr. Eileen Enright, RSM Joan Gann Michael T. Genovese Brian Ivie Garry P. Maisel Sharon Margetts Janak Mehtani, MD Careyann Morris Ryan Perry-Smith Tim Rogers Inder Singh, MD John Stevenson, MD Merrily Wong William W. Yee

Linda Van Rees Vice Chair Terry Street Secretary Alan Shatzel, DO Treasurer Sr. Katherine Doyle, RSM Sisters of Mercy West Midwest Community Representative Kevin B. Duggan Mercy Foundation President and CEO

Questions or comments about this newsletter? We welcome your feedback. Contact us at MercyFoundationSac@dignityhealth.org or (916) 851–2700 to share your comments or sign up for an electronic version.

Ministries supported by Mercy Foundation participate in BIG Day of Giving May 6 is the BIG Day of Giving, an initiative to increase philanthropy in our community. Starting at midnight May 6, and for the next 24 hours, online donations made through givelocalnow. org will go to hundreds of local nonprofits. Also, those donations will be matched on a pro-rated basis by contributions from many community businesses and organizations. Three of the ministries supported by Mercy Foundation—Sacramento Loaves & Fishes, Cristo Rey High School Sacramento and Mercy Education—are local nonprofits that can benefit. To learn more, go to givelocalnow.org/bigdayofgiving. If you miss the BIG Day of Giving, you can always support the Sisters of Mercy ministry of your choice year round by making a gift through Mercy Foundation.

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