Annual Event Celebrates People, Philanthropy, and The Miriam’s Driving Purpose

The Miriam Annual Meeting 2023On October 17, 2023, The Miriam Hospital Foundation hosted its Annual Meeting and Miriam People Celebration of Tradition at the Providence Marriott. The event was attended by more than 110 guests, who were eager to celebrate the power of philanthropy, recognize the impact of legacy supporters, and get the latest news and updates about their beloved hospital.

Pictured (L-R): The Sigal Family – 2023 Miriam People of the Year – Andy and Shelley Sigal, Steven Sigal, Brock Manville, Susan Kaplan, chair, The Miriam Hospital Foundation Board of Trustees, and Susan and David Bazar

Celebrating philanthropy

Susan Kaplan, Chair of The Miriam’s Foundation Board of Trustees, kicked off the evening expressing gratitude and deep appreciation for the hospital’s supporters.

“For nearly a century, The Miriam has been blessed with a donor community whose generosity knows no bounds and whose philanthropy has made a direct impact on the lives of near countless patients and their families,” Susan said. “Over the past year, that spirit and tradition of giving shined as bright as ever.”

Throughout the fiscal year, the hospital received thousands of donations from individuals, businesses, and organizations, including these transformational gifts:

  • The Simon Nemzow Living Trust – $250,000 for The Miriam’s Greatest Needs Fund.
  • The Norman and Rosalie Fain Family Foundation ($150,000) and The Edward J. and Virginia M. Routhier Foundation ($70,000) – to purchase a new ultrasound system for use in the operating rooms.
  • The Savit Family– $112,000 to establish The Savit Family Hodgkin's Lymphoma Research Endowment to find a cure for Hodgkin's Lymphoma.
Meeting patients where they are

The Miriam’s President, Maria Ducharme, DNP, RN, echoed Susan’s sentiments of gratitude and spoke passionately about how donors’ unwavering support is allowing The Miriam to simultaneously pursue excellence in everything they do and ensure the hospital is always there for the people who need them most.

“Over the past few years, we have realized—even more—just how reliant our community is on our services, and the barriers to care that exist for far too many of our fellow Rhode Islanders,” Dr. Ducharme explained. “In response, we have adapted new, innovative ways of delivering health by meeting patients where they are.” Enhancing telemedicine capabilities; providing support for in-home paramedicine care; offering transportation to patients in need; and administering care right in the streets were all examples she mentioned.

Dr. Ducharme also gave an update on infrastructure investments, discussed nursing excellence, and talked about delivering palliative care and comfort in The Miriam’s busy emergency department. “Competent, collaborative, and compassionate care is the cornerstone of a great hospital,” she summarized, “and we have it all right here at The Miriam.”

Reports from Lifespan leadership, the Medical Staff Association and Women’s Association, and the Presidential Scholarship Awards presented by Arthur J. Sampson, President Emeritus of The Miriam Hospital, were also included in the program and underscored the culture of excellence and compassionate care provided at the hospital.

Recognizing ‘People’

A highlight of this event is always the naming of The Miriam’s People of the Year, and the 2023 edition was no exception. This year, the Sigal Family earned that well-deserved honor.

Phyllis and Irving Sigal’s philanthropic support of The Miriam Hospital began over 50 years ago. Contributing their time, treasure, and talent, they became champions of the hospital’s role as standard-bearer for the delivery of health care in our community and state. Their own patient experiences later in life would strengthen their commitment. Following in their parent’s footsteps, the Sigal children have resolved to continue their work and honor Phyllis and Irving’s legacy and extraordinary mission.

In 2009, Andrew and Shelley Sigal, Jamie and Brock Manville, Susan and David Bazar, and Steven and Lee Sigal, established The Sigal Family Professorship in Humanistic Medicine; a shared $3 million endowment between The Miriam and Brown University. Inspired by the quality and compassionate care given to their parents by Fred J. Schiffman, MD, the Professorship is intended to teach future generations of physicians and medical providers in the delivery of such care. The family is proud to have Dr. Schiffman serve as its ongoing Chair.

In addition to their philanthropic support through The Narragansett Charitable Foundation, the family’s imprint includes stewardship as Foundation Board Trustees (Susan and Jamie) and Governors (Brock) as well as Gala Event Chairs (Susan and David). Their reach has recently expanded into The Miriam’s programmatic initiatives, such as Shelley’s work with Dr. Schiffman in mindfulness-based stress reduction for patients and staff.

Susan and David’s daughter, Cece Bazar Aparo, also a Governor, co-chaired the 2023 Miriam Gala this past April, and we are so grateful for a new generation of commitment and leadership from the Sigal family. The Miriam is forever grateful to the Sigals for their selfless contributions and congratulates them on receiving this well-deserved recognition.

Moreover, the hospital is grateful for all its friends and supporters and looks forward to continued partnerships with all for the benefit of the community it serves.

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