Donating to the Golisano Children's Hospital of Southwest Florida
Tuesday, Oct. 30 was a very special day for our community. It was the day we were able to put a name and face to the anonymous donor who pledged to match dollar-for-dollar all Children's Hospital Capital Campaign contributions up to $20 million. He is B. Thomas Golisano, a resident of Naples and a noted philanthropist.
We held a special event to introduce Mr. Golisano and to thank him for his extraordinary gift; and Lee Memorial Health System unveiled the new name of our hospital—Golisano Children's Hospital of Southwest Florida.
Mr. Golisano is an astute and successful businessman—the founder and chairman of the board of Paychex, Inc., a leader in the payroll, human resource and benefit outsourcing industry. He also is a steward of good works and philanthropy. In addition to his support of our hospital, his generous gifts include the Golisano Children's Hospital at the University of Rochester Medical Center in Rochester, N.Y.; Upstate Golisano Children's Hospital in Syracuse, N.Y.; the Golisano Children's Museum of Naples and the Tom Golisano Field House at Ave Maria University. He also is the founding sponsor and major underwriter for the past eight years of the Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting, which convenes global leaders to devise and implement innovative strategies for some of the world's most pressing challenges, including education, poverty, health and the environment.
Mr. Golisano researches his beneficiaries thoroughly and chooses them carefully, and we are deeply honored to be chosen as a recipient of his generosity—and this is an honor I, personally, will always cherish.
In the speech he made at our event, Mr. Golisano reflected on something someone said to him many years ago—"The only wealth you get to keep in this world is that which you give away." Mr. Golisano said he is thrilled to be able to give our community this gift. He hopes it will inspire others throughout all of Southwest Florida to give to help tiny babies and sick and injured children get the care they need without having to travel hours from home to get it. "I hope the community will rally in support," Mr. Golisano said. "There is nothing more noble than taking care of children."
Our community has rallied around our children's hospital capital campaign. In addition to the more than $50 million in pledges and actual donations received, since the announcement of Mr. Golisano's challenge just three months ago, $3 million has been raised, and with matching funds, totals $6 million. Since the founding of The Children's Hospital of Southwest Florida, our community has supported our "Little Hospital That Could," and we are proud of the phenomenal care we have been able to provide to the children and families of Southwest Florida. With the support of Mr. Golisano and the many generous benefactors in our community, we look forward to a promising future where we can serve more children and families with the health care and advocacy services they need…as close to home as possible.
Thank you, Mr. Golisano, for your trust in our vision and our caring and talented team. Together, we are caring people, caring for people.
If you are interested in making a gift or learning more about giving opportunities to the Golisano Children's Hospital of Southwest Florida Capital Campaign, call the Lee Memorial Health System Foundation at 239-343-6950 or visit www.ChildrensHospitalGoal.org. To learn more about Lee Memorial Health System, please visit www.LeeMemorial.org.
President, Lee Memorial Health System