NorthBay’s Jubilee Weekend Comes with $1 Million Surprise
A surprise $1 million donation from NorthBay Health President and CEO B. Konard Jones and wife, Denise, announced at the NorthBay Jubilee Gala on Oct. 27, skyrocketed the organization’s fundraising efforts to a historic $1.85 million.
The funds will support major needs in the NorthBay Health Heart & Vascular program. NorthBay Health Foundation launched a campaign in 2022 to raise $12 million, which combined with hospital resources, will go a long way toward building two catheterization labs and someday a third.
Even before the doors opened to the sponsor thank you event, which kicked off Jubilee weekend, donations and ticket sales had already reached a record $568,000, McGinty noted. At the Gala, a spirited Live Auction brought in roughly $126,000 more, and an appeal to “Fund a Need” – to replace an aging echocardiogram — brought in another $165,000, enough to purchase the equipment.
“The generosity, to be honest, was overwhelming,” McGinty said. “Even without Konard’s $1 million donation, this Jubilee weekend surpassed every previous record.”
Jones spoke before the Gala gathering about his upcoming retirement on Dec. 31, and offered praise for the legacy and commitment to community that has guided NorthBay through many storms over the years, made possible through “the leadership, the best group of physicians on the face of the planet, the volunteers, nurses, staff, and the four boards who have guided us, in particular Archie Humphrey and Mark Sievers,” he said. “For 63 years NorthBay has been owners of this land; this is our home, it’s our ZIP code and our competitors just rent it here, because they answer to a different ZIP code, even in another state.”
NorthBay’s path to financial recovery, following its costly commitment to care for the community and staff through the pandemic, is now on firm ground, he said.
“Do not let our journey end tonight,” he added. “To remain independent, we need people who see our mission and support us long-term. We are not able to do what we do, without you. And I do not ask others to do what I would not.”
And then he made the surprise announcement that he and wife would donate $1 million, “to help assure NorthBay stays independent for future decades.” The statement was met with gasps, cheers and a standing ovation.
“We live in a very generous community who obviously shares our commitment to the NorthBay Health mission statement, ‘Advanced Medicine, Compassionate Care, Close to Home,’” McGinty noted. “Our community agrees there is a need for these expanded services, and wants to ensure NorthBay can continue to provide high-quality health care for all. It’s very validating.”
The next day, Oct. 28, doors opened to the community to attend the 33rd NorthBay Jubilee, also at the Sunrise Event Center. Guests were greeted with champagne and then invited to stroll through the ballroom and visit booths of dozens of vendors, featuring fine wine, brews and a wide variety of food, sweets and tasty treats.
Incoming NorthBay Health President and CEO Mark Behl attended both events with his wife, Sara, noting it was a wonderful opportunity to meet so many people, including physicians, employees and a very supportive community. They, in turn, gave a $10,000 donation.
“Sara and I were taken aback by the engagement and generosity displayed at the Gala,” said Behl. “We feel so fortunate to be part of this community, and I am so excited to lead the organization going forward.”
The 2023 Jubilee marked the signature event’s return after it was sidelined by the pandemic in 2020. A core group of board members – Dennis Landis, Bill Fell, Al Shaw and Scott Reynolds – met during that time to recreate the Foundation with a new vision of philanthropy. According to McGinty, “This weekend’s success illustrates that the Foundation’s new vision is working.”