Jenna Bush Hager Inspires Volunteerism at White Plains Hospital Luncheon

WP4Susan Fox, Jenna Bush, Kathy Winterroll, Susan YubasYou only need to drive a few feet north of Scarsdale on the Post Road to see that big changes are afoot at White Plains Hospital. As part of their transformation from a community hospital to a major medical destination, the hospital recently broke ground on a new 252,000 square foot center for advanced medicine and surgery.

Though it’s all in virtual reality for now, this new center will include equipment and staff to perform many procedures that previously sent patients farther afield. Some of these services include advanced imaging, ambulatory surgery, endoscopy, high risk maternal-fetal medicine, orthopedics and spine care, heart and vascular medicine, surgical services, and hyperbaric wound care.

WP1Anna Cappucci, Wendy Berk, Kathy Winterroll, Susan Fox, Carrie Bank, Eileen Meyers, Kathy SherbalSome of this new construction has been underwritten by generous donors who were celebrated at the Friends of White Plains Hospital Spring Luncheon on Tuesday, June 4 at Willow Ridge Country Club. In addition to seeing friends and learning more about plans for the hospital, the audience was treated to an appearance by Jenna Bush Hager, who is now a co-host of the Today Show.

WP10Lisa Singer, Dara Gruenberg, Jenna Bush, Stacey Philips, Lisa GansHospital President and CEO Susan Fox opened the event and welcomed Board Members Kathy Winterroll and Wendy Berk, who head the Friends of White Plains Hospital. On behalf of the Friends, they presented a check for $1.6 million, their largest ever donation to the hospital. They also granted scholarships to four graduating high school students who spent hundreds of hours volunteering at the hospital. Anne Edwards was grant the first annual ripple award for her decades of service.

Jenna Bush, who is well into the pregnancy of her third child came to the podium and declined a chair – though it must have been tough to stand. She was poised, charming and engaging, and spoke to the sold out room of over 300 women as if they were all her best friends.

WP9Pam Jahmarkt, Sharon Seibold, Ali Gordon, Amy Hirshhorn, Jenna Bush, Patricia Dweck, Vanessa Mandel, Dayna NovensteinShe shared stories about the lives of her two grandmothers, who both passed away recently, just after the publication of Jenna and Barbara’s book, “Sisters First.” She called her grandmother Barbara Bush, “the enforcer,” and said that her “Ganny” passed away with courage and grace and even had the chance to listen to her own eulogy before she died.

Bush said that both of her grandmothers passed down the legacy of service and giving back from generation to generation. Jenna inherited the desire to help others and spent several years teaching in inner city schools and travelled to Latin America to help HIV infected mothers and children.

She laughed when she said, I could never imagine that I would end up working in the media, after they reported to the world that I had “gained the freshman 15.” (pounds that is.)

It was a delightful event for a good cause and the good feelings generated in the room will undoubtedly create ripples in the years to come.