Susan Unger, President of St. Luke's Foundation
Connecting donors' passions with the needs of Siouxland
A Sioux City, Iowa native, Susan Unger knows firsthand the impact St. Luke's has on Siouxland. Susan's own father received cardiac care at St. Luke's, she celebrated the birth of her daughter in the hospital's birth center, and sadly, Susan's mother passed away at St. Luke's.
"I know what it's like to be both a patient and loved one of someone at St. Luke's, and the deeply important emotional connection patients, families and St. Luke's staff share during a patient's time at St. Luke's," she says.
Susan realized her own love for philanthropy the very first time she had the privilege of connecting a donor's passion with the organization's need. Throughout her long career in philanthropy and work with St. Luke's, which began nearly 25 years ago, Susan continues to be inspired by donors' dreams to make the local community a better place for future generations.
"Our supporters want to be a part of transforming healthcare at St. Luke's, and donors know I am committed to discovering ways of helping achieve their dreams. I am truly one of the luckiest people, because I have the privilege of working and knowing those who share this vision and seeing the sense of joy and accomplishment they feel when their own passions are ignited."
Stacey Selk, Director of Children's Miracle Network
Helping donors provide quality healthcare
Excited to be brand new to the Siouxland area, it has become very apparent to Stacey that this community rallies around and supports one another. “When you start a career in the healthcare field at the beginning of a worldwide pandemic, you discover quickly what it truly means to be part of an organization that not only works tirelessly to ensure the safety and wellbeing of our community, but also rallies to make sure all team members are supported.”, says Stacey.
After spending the last four years in the nonprofit sector focusing on business development, marketing and fundraising, Stacey feels right at home in her new role. Philanthropy is a place where she can really make a difference and see her efforts making an impact on the world. She says her passion and heart are her driving force in life and has found something she loves doing that doesn’t feel like work to her.
Stacey understands what serving the community truly means and wants nothing more than to show her donors how they have the power to change lives and make a difference. “My passion is relationship building and connecting grateful donors to a worthwhile cause. I am thrilled to get to know the area businesses and community members and continue my career in the nonprofit arena!”
Christy Stinger, Foundation Supervisor
Understanding the impact of giving back
Ask Christy Stinger what philanthropy means to her, and her answer may surprise you.
"When you believe in something, it's less about fundraising and more about your excitement and passion for a project-and inviting others to share that with you," says Christy, a South Sioux City native.
Past experience as a reporter in Clarinda, Iowa, fueled Christy's fresh perspective on fundraising. She witnessed first-hand the impact gifts could have on those in the small Iowan community, even volunteering herself after covering a story about the need for volunteers at the local Humane Society. A position in marketing and development at Jackson Recovery Centers in Sioux City, helping the team raise funds for the organization's Child and Adolescent Recovery Hospital, furthered Christy's belief in the power of giving back.
"When you invite people to make a difference in the lives of others, whether through giving of time, expertise or funds, people are incredibly generous. Giving to something that makes a difference feels great," she says.
Today, as Development Coordinator for St. Luke's Foundation, Christy's goal is to make sure donors understand the impact of their gifts. Most remarkably says Christy is that donors have the unique opportunity to give to their passions. If a donor wants to help cardiac patients, they can contribute to heart care at St. Luke's. Or, if their passion is to enhance a patient's overall experience, there are opportunities to give back to the Levitt Guest Center, neonatal intensive care unit or other funds adds Christy.
"We want every person who gives to St. Luke's Foundation to understand how grateful we are and how their generosity impacts the entire Siouxland community."
Elizabeth Rol, Development Specialist
Giving back to the community that helped foster her growth
Elizabeth feels that she chose the right organization to work for every day that she comes to work at UnityPoint Health - St. Luke's. She has grown so accustomed to the culture, and even more comfortable with the team that she works with, that it's hard for her to imagine life before working here.
She loves showing the community members that they matter and are valued. Getting out into the community and making connections with local members and businesses is a perk that Elizabeth enjoys. "I am just so 'wowed' by the feeling that I get working for the UnityPoint Health - St. Luke's Foundation.
Born and raised in Sioux City, Elizabeth is committed to serving a community that has continually fostered her growth as a citizen and valued community member, and plans to use her skills, talents, and passions to make Sioux City a better place for ALL of its community members. "Having the opportunity to give back to my community through the St. Luke's Foundation is going to be an honor; one that I am eager and willing to take on head first."
"If there is anything in life you should invest in, whether it be financially, physically, or emotionally, it should be the healthcare system." Life is never promised, and you never know when you or a loved one might need the care or support from UnityPoint Health. That is why Elizabeth is making it her mission to support the St. Luke's Foundation in every facet that she can.
Allison Kjar, Development Coordinator
Pursuing a purpose in Siouxland
"To say I am Siouxland Proud would be an understatement," says Allison, a Siouxland native, graduate of two local institutions and a representative of the community through various honors. Allison continues to be amazed everyday by the support throughout the Siouxland area and feels her career in development and philanthropy allows her to pursue a purpose-driven life. Each day she chooses to work for a greater cause and is pushed to put her own priorities into perspective.
Starting a career in healthcare, during the COVID-19 pandemic is something Allison says she will never forget, “Every day since joining this team I have been ‘wow-ed’ by the around-the-clock efforts to keep our internal teams and the rest of the Siouxland community healthy and rest assured."
Allison enjoys her close knit Siouxland community and feels she never truly meets a stranger, there is always a connection to be made for a greater cause. This is something she hopes our donors feel as well, their gifts and impacts always hit close to home.
Supporting St. Luke’s is meaningful to Allison because she recognizes that there isn’t an individual, family or community that does not rely on healthcare teams and services at some point in their lives. The best part Allison says, “All funds raised in the Siouxland area are given back directly to our local community in various ways. With this said, it’s important to remember that even the smallest of gifts can foster a large difference.
UnityPoint Health - St. Luke's Foundation Board:
- Mike Crone - Chairperson
- Tasha Barker - Vice Chairperson
- Emily Mills - Secretary
- Jeff Stanley - Treasurer
- Al Aymar
- Kyle Kelly
- Jennifer Letch
- Juliana Mayne
- Amy Roth
- Matt Thompson
- Joe Wren