Gala Raises Record $76k for WNH; Hospital Employees Receive Healthcare Hero Award

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William Newton Healthcare Foundation hosted its 15th annual fundraising event on Oct. 15 presented by Union State Bank.

After hosting virtual galas for the past two years to help keep guests safe from COVID-19 transmission, the roaring twenties-themed event was held at the historic Burford Theatre as was originally planned in 2020, according to a press release from the hospital.

“We have waited since 2020 to have this Gatsby theme and to be together in person,” said William Newton Healthcare Foundation Executive Director Annika Morris and co-emcee. “We are here tonight for three major reasons. One, to have fun and get all dolled up, two, to thank and recognize all of our wonderful donors, and three, to raise some money for your hospital.”

Exceeding its goal of $60,000 and setting a new event record, the foundation raised $76,683 benefiting phase two of William Newton Hospital’s Second Century Campaign for the emergency department expansion.

The 2022 gala was dubbed “The Grand Affair” and took advantage of the majestic décor of the 1924-built Burford Theatre, the hospital said.

A crowd of William Newton Hospital staff members gathered with bank representatives at the front entrance to receive the 2022 Union State Bank Healthcare Hero Award. Holding the award in the front row, William Newton Hospital Director of Human Resources Tiffany Shinneman is flanked by Union State Bank’s Cory Helmer (left) and Rusty Zimmerman (right).

Representatives from Winfield’s Health Occupations Students of America and the Cowley College Tigerettes assisted in greeting guests. Attendees were encouraged to dress to the theme, and over 150 guests were treated to a four-course meal catered by The Rollin Chef Diner at Graves Drug. Good Day Kansas co-anchor Avery Osen served as co-emcee.

A ‘Bubbles & Bling’ raffle was held, sponsored by Bob’s Liquor and Schmidt Jewelers.

Guests who bought a glass of Prosecco (Italian white wine) were entered into a drawing for a yellow gold and diamond necklace. A silent auction offered 19 packages for bidding, and the live auction for 14 packages was conducted by auctioneer Rick Hopper. The evening was highlighted by a burlesque performance by Adele Wolf of Oklahoma City. Keepsake photos were taken under a balloon arch created by Two Sisters Events.

Union State Bank Winfield and Udall Market President Cory Helmer announced that the 2022 Healthcare Hero Award would be given to all William Newton Hospital employees.

“This year’s award goes to not just one individual, but a group of people,” Helmer said. “This group is receiving this recognition due to its commitment and dedication to providing quality care every day. Through unexpected challenges, through trauma and loss, these people think of each other as a family away from home.

“This award honors their perseverance, hard work, dedication, and patience through a global pandemic, plus a gauntlet of changes and challenges over the last three years. Their fortitude exudes all of the aspects of being a hero, and we are grateful to have people such as this in our community.”

“This year was a reflection of the incredible philanthropic support that our hospital enjoys,” William Newton Healthcare Foundation Director Annika Morris said. “Everyone seemed happy to be together in person again, and the level of support raised that evening is humbling.”

Next year’s gala is slated for Oct. 14, 2023, and has been coined ‘Denim and Diamonds.’ To learn more about William Newton Healthcare Foundation, visit www.wnhfoundation.org.

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