Seven individuals and one organization were recently honored by the Memorial and Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Foundations at the 18th annual Circle of Friends luncheon at the Diplomat Resort & Spa.
Albert Jones, Stanley Marks, Greg Marsh, the Patient and Family Centered Advisory Councils, Dexter Sereda, and Peter Shulman were named “Spirit of Healing” award winners for professional excellence, community service, and a commitment to the Memorial Healthcare System. The contributions of Al and Jackie Fernandez were recognized with the “Wasie Philanthropic Leadership” award for fundraising generosity and guidance.
“Our award winners are difference makers in the community,” said Carl Schuster, board chair of the Memorial and Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Foundations. “They have consistently dedicated their efforts to making South Florida a better place.”
Albert Jones, a Dania Beach resident, has been involved in the Broward County community for nearly 50 years. He has been an educator, school board member, elected official, and a member of the Board of Commissioners of the South Broward Hospital District. First appointed by then Governor Jeb Bush in 1999, Jones served as commissioner for 17 years, helping lead the Memorial Healthcare System during a time it grew to become one of the largest public healthcare systems (by revenue) in the country. Since his retirement from the board in December, Jones has served on the community relations committee of the Coalition for a Healthy South Broward.
Dr. Stanley Marks, of Cooper City, has been part of the Memorial Healthcare System for 37 years, initially as a staff physician and now as Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer. In his current role, he leads Memorial’s Graduate Medical Education (GME) program, which will provide important learning and training opportunities for new physicians. Having recently received approval from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) to accept residents for its physical medicine, rehabilitation, and pediatric programs, Dr. Marks and his team are also pursuing accreditation in internal medicine, with OB/GYN, general surgery, and emergency medicine expected by 2020.
Weston resident Greg Marsh has chaired the Conine All-Star Golf Classic, and numerous other fundraisers for the Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Foundation, for more than a decade. The event, which raises money for the Conine Clubhouse, generated nearly $300,000 earlier this year, with those funds helping underwrite expenses for families who stay for free while a child is hospitalized. Marsh has also been a driving force behind the success of the Jeff Conine Celebrity Poker Classic and Joe DiMaggio Casino Night, both of which have made it possible for more than 9,000 families to have a home away from home while a child is being treated at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital.
- The Patient and Family Centered Advisory Councils (PFACs) have been largely responsible for changing the culture of the Memorial Healthcare System from one that was system-centered to one that focused on people. That began in 2001, under the direction of Nick Masi, with the formation of committees where parents and family members could advocate for the needs of the patient. Establishing the family as the focus of care, the advisory councils affirmed that medical interventions are done with them (not for them or to them) and acknowledged that a patients entire support system — family, friends, and community — are all vital aspects of a successful recovery. The PFACs have become indispensable players in establishing and maintaining the culture and, with members serving on committees and task forces, have recommend changes in hospital policies, helped design new spaces within Memorial’s facilities, and proposed new programs, including the Family Resource Centers now located at every hospital.
Dr. Dexter Sereda’s career as a physician has shown that there are many ways to have impact in the medical field. The resident of Hollywood was a surgeon for more than 28 years and has successfully transitioned to an administrative position as director of medical affairs at Memorial Hospital Pembroke, a role that has him as the liaison between the facility’s medical staff and administration. Previously the medical director of adult general surgery at Memorial Hospital West, Sereda is currently also pursuing an MBA degree in healthcare at Florida International University.
Peter Shulman, MD, has been helping children gain access to the healthcare they deserve for more than 40 years. After joining Pediatric Associates in 1975, Shulman was entrusted with developing their first satellite office in Plantation and today, as the medical group’s CEO, oversees more than 250 pediatricians, 35 locations, and more than one million annual office visits.A familiar face at Memorial Regional Hospital, the Fort Lauderdale resident also treated patients at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital after it opened in 1992.
Al and Jackie Fernandez, also from Fort Lauderdale, were the recipients of the Wasie Philanthropic Leadership Award for generosity in fundraising and guidance. Al has served on the board of the Memorial and Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Foundations for many years and the couple is responsible for co-founding the Tour de Broward, an annual event that includes cycling, running and walking options for participants and raises money for programs and services at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital. It generated more than $500,000 earlier this year and has now raised more than $2 million for local children’s healthcare in its seven-year history.
The Memorial and Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Foundations raise funds philanthropically to assist patients, families, and to underwrite the cost of programs, facilities, and equipment within the Memorial Healthcare System. To learn more or make a donation, please call 954.265.3454 or visit them online.