HomeCity NewsMario Lopez Golf Classic Raises Funds for ‘Minutes Matter’ Campaign

Mario Lopez Golf Classic Raises Funds for ‘Minutes Matter’ Campaign

First published in the June 25 print issue of the Burbank Leader.

As the Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center Foundation’s “Minutes Matter” campaign ticks down, supporters of the undertaking that has raised funds to bring Burbank a new state-of-the-art emergency services department gathered at Lakeside Golf club to participate in the 2022 Mario Lopez Golf Classic on June 13.
Lopez, the actor and television personally best known for playing the role of A.C. Slater on the early 1990s NBC sitcom “Saved by the Bell” and as the host of the syndicated entertainment news magazine shows “Extra” and “Access Hollywood,” has played an instrumental part in supporting the “Minutes Matter” campaign from its inception more than five years ago.
After being welcomed by Lopez, 150-plus golfers took to the links and enjoyed a barbeque lunch prior to being joined by family and friends for a sunset cocktail reception, dinner, live auction and awards ceremony topped off with a performance by the soft rock cover band Yächtley Crëw.
The Lakeside gathering of those who helped make the campaign a success represented many of the top-tier donors who, along with more than 2,800 others, contributed toward the project’s $78-million goal.
According to Michael Daruty, who served as the chairman of the Mario Lopez Golf Classic, the event, which was preempted for two years due to the pandemic, is on track to raise more than $1.2 million that will go toward the campaign.
During the evening program, which took place on Lakeside’s back lawn, Daruty, who is the senior vice president of technical operations for NBCUniversal, was joined by Mark Goldstein, who serves as the chairman of the Providence Saint Joseph Foundation board of governors, to thank Lopez.

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The duo also recognized Jeff Miller, who recently retired from his positions as the president of studio operations for The Walt Disney Co. and as a member of the board of governors of the Providence Saint Joseph Foundation.
Miller, who personally ensured that caregivers at Providence Saint Joseph received meals and daily reminders of appreciation during the pandemic, has been one of the leading advocates and stakeholders in ensuring that the health-care needs of Burbank and the surrounding communities are met today and for generations to come.
Throughout his 15 years on the foundation board, he chaired numerous fundraising events and made extraordinary contributions to various initiatives and advances in revenue-stream campaigns.
The evening’s gathering also heard from Brian Helleland, interim chief executive at Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center. Helleland called the new facility: “A shining light that has been illuminated by philanthropy.” He was followed by Dr. Angelique Campen, an emergency medicine physician, who thanked the assemblage for making the vision of the new facility a reality.
“Your support will provide us with an emergency department that can handle anything that comes our way,” Campen said. “Perhaps, even things that are unforeseen.”
Campen also recognized members of the Cusumano family who were in attendance for funding the Cusumano Family Urgent Care Facility, which will be next to the new emergency department.
Among the many special guests on hand at the tournament were longtime Burbankers Nat and Alma Rubinfeld, who served as co-chairs of a community fundraising committee, one of the many created by the foundation’s board in 2016, to raise funds and awareness of the “Minutes Matter” campaign. To date, these ad-hock committees have raised more than $10 million.
Along with the aforementioned and the event’s sponsors, the success of this year’s golf tournament was also attributed to Tina Johann, who serves as chief philanthropy officer, and Angela Khurdajian, director of philanthropy, both with the Providence Saint Joseph Foundation.
The new 35,000-square-foot Jaromír Strížka Emergency Department, which will be operational and treating patients within the next two months, will almost triple the size of the hospital’s current space. The department will include 44 treatment rooms, two critical procedure bays, behavioral health rooms and a dedicated pharmacy.
It will also house on-site x-ray, ultrasound and CT scanning capabilities. The Cusumano Family Urgent Care Facility is scheduled to open later this year.

DAVID LAURELL may be reached by email at dlaurell@aol.com or (818) 563-1007.

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