May 5, 2015

Foundation’s First Celebration Event

General Health

The Fort Memorial Hospital Foundation held its first Celebration Event on Thursday, April 16 at the Fort Atkinson Club. 115 guests learned about the impact of their charitable donations to Fort HealthCare’s mission at the festive event.

Entering the Fort Atkinson Club on the main level, guests were greeted by members of the event committee, Rosemary Hable, Marie Nelson and Carol Ward Knox. They were also greeted by the aromas of Chef Colleen Miller’s cuisine, the beautiful decorations provided by Humphrey Floral & Gifts, and the light jazz of the Mike Knauf Duo.

The event covered all three floors of the Fort Atkinson Club. Starting on the Main Level, guests learned about Fort HealthCare’s Healing Breast Care Program for women. Tammie Turley, program coordinator and Kim Ruffalo, occupational therapist, shared information with guests about the impact that their contributions are having in the lives of women living with breast cancer.

Guests also started their ‘Mingle Through Your Meal’ experience on this level of the club. A buffet featuring small plate portions of dishes ranging from appetizers to entrée courses and desserts were provided by Chef Colleen Miller and the Steel Away Café catering team. All the while, Eve Horton took photos the festivities.

As guests ventured downstairs to the River Level, they continued their meals while learning about Fort HealthCare’s Pediatric Wellness programs and Simulation Laboratory.

Nurse Practitioners Heidi Jennrich and Laurel Runte along with RNs Melanie Kutz and Kati Wetzel introduced guests to the Rail Yard fitness equipment being used in area schools, the County Fair and many other venues to provide children with a fun way to get active. Guests also learned about sugar levels in various beverages as an example of the nutrition education provided to area school children through the PEP Rally program. Play more, Eat right and Push away the screen are the focus of this program.

The Simulation Laboratory provided guests a hands-on opportunity to interact with a mannequin named Matilda. Using high tech mannequins with active body functions, Fort HealthCare employees have the opportunity to train and hone skills that are important to provide exceptional care for people served by the clinics and hospital. Lisa Rudolph, program director, and Sarah Bina, simulation specialist, were on hand to answer questions and demonstrate this important training tool for Fort HealthCare.

Two videos were showing on the River Level. The Diabetes Lunch & Learn program lead by Fort HealthCare’s school nurses in area schools was featured in one. The Simulation Lab was highlighted in the other.

Guests were invited to the Theater Room on the Upper Level of the Fort Atkinson Club for the evening’s feature presentation. Carol Ward Knox, President of the Fort Memorial Hospital Foundation welcomed the guests and thanked them for their support. Michael Wallace, CEO of Fort HealthCare shared the importance of contributors who help fulfill the organization’s mission of “improving the health and well-being of our community.

Dwight Heaney, Executive Director of the Foundation, thanked the guests for their contributions. “Your generosity to Fort HealthCare makes the programs possible that you learned about tonight” said Heaney. His comments were followed by a champagne toast to the Foundation Board, hospital employees and most importantly, the generous benefactors who make the Foundation’s impact possible.

Following the toast, Heaney gave an introduction to the Foundation’s new Benefactors Society. The program is based on two simple concepts. First, anyone who contributes to Fort HealthCare is a member regardless of the size of gift. Second, people are invited to give to Fort HealthCare’s mission in ways that are personally meaningful to them. In return, we promise to keep you informed about the use and impact of your contributions.

The Foundation has identified four areas of focus including Benevolent Care, Living Healthier, Supporting Exceptional Care and Advancing Careers in HealthCare. Contributors are encouraged to give to an area of interest, a program with personal importance or unrestricted gifts to be used in areas of greatest need.

A video highlighting the story of Pam Gustin, a local teacher recovering from breast cancer, who participates in the Healing Breast Care program was shown for the first time publicly. Mrs. Gustin was present and guests appreciated her willingness to share her experience.

The story of the Molthen family was featured in a second video about Fort HealthCare’s Movin’ and Losin’ program. Motivated by a daughter’s diagnosis of Type 1 diabetes, the Molthen family participates in the program as a fun family activity to get exercise and learn about options to replace high sugar and high fat foods in their diets. Bridget Molthen was able to attend the event, though the kids were busy on a school night.

Heidi Jennrich, APNP Pediatrics, shared the passion and vision shared by the Pediatric Wellness Team for helping children in our area learn healthy habits that can last a lifetime. She also thanked the audience for their generosity and making these programs possible.

The evening concluded with door prizes including gift certificates from Fargo Mansion Inn, Black Sheep Restaurant, Camrock Café and Sports and Fort HealthCare’s Steel Away Café. Floral arrangements provided by Humphrey Floral & Gifts were also taken home by guests. The evening ended with dessert and coffee featuring a 3-tiered cake from Jerry’s Cake Corner.

The Fort Memorial Hospital Foundation would like to thank all of the volunteers who helped make this possible. Members of the event committee are Nancy Alstad, Rosemary Hable, Tim Humphrey, Eve Horton, Carol Ward Knox, Colleen Miller, Marie Nelson, Kay Wipperfurth and UWW student Morgan Krieck.

The new videos created by Chad Johnstone, Highlights Media and information about the Fort HealthCare Benefactors Society are available on the Foundation website at