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Children's Hospital of Orange County receives largest gift in hospital history

Orange, Calif., February 24, 2011 Children's Hospital of Orange County (CHOC Children's) today announced it has received a $30 million estate gift the largest gift in the hospital's history.

This transformational gift from the estate of Robert L. Tidwell will honor the donor's intent by using the funds to support the $125 million "Change CHOC, Change the World" campaign, which aims to make Orange County, Calif., one of the safest and healthiest places for children in the nation.

"This generous gift will help CHOC achieve various strategic objectives as we progress from being a crucial regional pediatric care center to one of the nation's leading children's hospitals," said Kim Cripe, president and CEO of CHOC Children's. "The funds will be balanced between our construction needs and investment in future growth and development."

Specifically, the gift will be allocated as follows:

  • $15 million to support CHOC's Master Campus Plan, which includes construction of a state-of-the-art, seven-story patient care tower set to open in Spring 2013. CHOC will recognize Robert L. Tidwell by naming the surgery center in the new patient care tower in his honor.
  • $15 million for a Board Restricted Fund to support CHOC's vision and priorities by advancing pediatric medicine through clinical program development; recruiting leading pediatric experts (physicians, clinicians and researchers); and funding the Robert L. Tidwell Endowment for Ophthalmology.

The donor, Robert L. Tidwell, was a long-time Garden Grove, Calif., resident. The former investment banker left his entire estate to CHOC Children's upon his passing in 2009. The gift was just recently transferred to the CHOC Children's Foundation, which raises funds for the nonprofit pediatric healthcare system.

According to CHOC Children's Foundation staff, Tidwell took a tour of CHOC some time before he passed away. During the tour, he appeared visibly moved and shared that he wanted his money to help children. He expressed his confidence in CHOC's ability to use his money well.

"Mr. Tidwell's legacy gift will improve the lives of children locally, nationally and globally for generations to come," said Cripe.

With this major gift, CHOC Children's is now two-thirds of the way toward its goal of raising $125 million for the campaign. While Tidwell's extraordinary gift is very significant, CHOC still has $39 million remaining to reach its campaign goal by June 30, 2013.

"To help accomplish our vision for world-class pediatric healthcare, we invite the community to make donations of any size to the 'Change CHOC, Change the World' campaign," said Tanya Lieber, vice president of the CHOC Children's Foundation.


Contact: Amber Albrecht
Porter Novelli, Life Sciences

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