Over 450 friends of Silver Cross Hospital attended the 84th annual Childerguild Ball November 17 at the Odyssey Country Club and enjoyed wonderful food and dancing. The premiere event of the holiday season raised over $160,000, which will be used to support women’s and children’s programs and services at the new Silver Cross Hospital.
For over 100 years, Childerguild has served Silver Cross Hospital by raising funds to support and serve women and children. The annual tradition of the Childerguild Ball began in 1928 as a fundraiser for the Obstetrics and Pediatrics departments at Silver Cross Hospital, and keeps going strong thanks to the commitment of the members of Childerguild and to the many friends of the hospital who contribute to make this event a great success year after year. This year Barbara Steffes chaired the Ball. Her committee included: Adele Adams, Carole DeBenedetti, Robin Hartney, Karen Hughes, Pam Resutko, Cindy Studer, and Carole Ziemke.
As a prelude to the dinner, the hospital awarded for the first time the Silver Cross Hospital Board of Directors’ Chairman Award to Paul Pawlak, President and CEO of Silver Cross Hospital, for his vision and leadership. As the hospital’s longest serving CEO, Pawlak led Silver Cross to be recognized nationally for outstanding customer service, effective cost management, and superior clinical quality winning the prestigious 100 Top Hospitals National Award for seven consecutive years. In addition, Silver Cross has been recognized as one of America’s Friendliest Hospitals by the American Alliance of Healthcare Providers for several years. Never satisfied with the status quo, he consistently challenges staff to improve the hospital’s performance. His appreciation and respect for the contributions employees make everyday has created a culture of excellence, caring and compassion under his leadership. He has overseen the health system’s expansion to nine ambulatory care centers through Will, Grundy and Cook counties as well as over $600 million in new services and facilities including a 289-bed, $365 million replacement hospital which opened on Feb. 26, 2012 in New Lenox. He is also responsible for bringing the Veteran’s Administration Community Outpatient Clinic and a Federally Qualified Health Center to the Joliet campus.
Under his direction, Silver Cross formed partnerships with world-renowned academic medical facilities including Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, The Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago and University of Chicago Medical Center. Silver Cross also operates the largest managed care organization in Will County.
In addition, medals of excellence were given to two prominent community service and healthcare minded individuals.
This year’s Silver Cross Sehring Medal of Excellence was awarded to family medicine physician Joseph Karcavich, M.D. Throughout his 39 years at Silver Cross Hospital, he has shared his expertise as a leader serving as Chairman on the Silver Cross Hospital Utilization Committee, Vice-Chair of Family Practice, and Department Chairman on the hospital’s Medical Executive Committee. Over the years, Dr. Karcavich has volunteered with several community organizations. He was on the original Board of the Will Grundy Medical Clinic, which assisted patients who were really having tough times in their lives. In addition, he served on the Criteria Care Committee of the Quad River Foundation where he collaborated with hospitals and community business leaders. Further, he volunteered his time on the Board of Directors for the Mother Theresa Nursing Home, and was President of the Will-Grundy County Medical Society, as well as Chairman of the Will-Grundy Chapter of the Illinois Academy of Family Practice.
Silver Cross also honored Russ Slinkard with the Sangmeister Medal of Excellence for the many hours he has unselfishly given of his time to improve the quality of life of Will County residents. He held various roles at the Illinois Bell Telephone Company, First National Bank of Joliet and Three Rivers Manufacturers Association. Currently, Russ works as the President/CEO of the Joliet Region Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Under his innovative leadership, the Chamber has flourished. For over 35 years, he has volunteered hundreds of hours to numerous area organizations including the United Way of Will County where he has held various roles. In addition, he has worked with the Center for Economic Development (CED) during the 1980’s. He was one of the charter members for the CED and served on its Board for 11 years. Further, for over 24 years Russ has been actively involved volunteering for Silver Cross Hospital. He has served on the Hospital’s Board of Trustees. Russ also volunteered to improve education in the Joliet schools. Through his work with the Joliet Junior College, Russ assisted in bringing a big business perspective to the college’s Board of Directors.
The Silver Cross Foundation is accepting nominations through Dec. 31, 2012 for the 2013 Silver Cross Medals of Excellence. For more information, call (815) 300-7105.
The 2013 Childerguild Ball will be held Saturday, November 23 and the location is to be determined. For over 100 years, Childerguild has benefited women and children at Silver Cross Hospital. Founded in 1910, by 13 benevolent women who had no children of their own, Childerguild was formed to benefit the obstetrics and pediatrics departments at Silver Cross. In the early years, Childerguild raised funds through private donations and by hosting card parties. Today proceeds from annual events such as the Ball along with the efforts of Childerguild members to operate the hospital’s Gift Shop has allowed the organization to donate over $2.3 million to fund maternal/child care projects at Silver Cross Hospital. For more information about Childerguild, call the Silver Cross Volunteer Department at (815) 300-7117.