2017 Celebration of Giving

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CMH Foundation Hosts Tribute to Giving to Thank Donors

Philanthropic giving makes excellent medical care possible in rural Clatsop County, Oregon.

(Left to right) Award winners Michael Autio, Randy McClelland, Dr. William Armington, and Willis Van Dusen.

Sept. 15, 2017, ASTORIA, Ore. – The Columbia Memorial Hospital Foundation thanked its donors Thursday evening through a tribute to giving. The guests were entertained by Richard Steele, a world-renowned magician and mentalist.

Most notably, donors were thanked for their philanthropic support of programs and services at Columbia Memorial Hospital (CMH), notably, the CMH-OHSU Knight Cancer Collaborative, which will open in early October.

The evening was capped off by the presentation of four awards—including two new awards—that were established to honor extraordinary leadership that embodies the spirit of philanthropy, both at the hospital and in the community.

The new Columbia Award was presented to Michael Autio. Autio is the immediate past board chair of CMH Foundation and has been actively involved with the Foundation and the hospital for over 22 years.

Bill Garvin, the current chair of the Foundation, recognized Autio’s service and leadership to the Foundation, to CMH and to the community. “Mike [Autio] has played a significant role in the success of both the Foundation and the hospital. He has spent countless hours volunteering in the community as well,” Garvin said.

CMH Board Chair Constance Waisanen presented Dr. William Armington with the first Caduceus Award, which recognizes a physician or provider who has gone above and beyond to advance philanthropy at CMH and in the community. Waisanen said, “Dr. Armington believes in giving back to his community. He believes that is what having a real community is all about—people coming together to give their money, their time and their talent to make things happen.”

The Terry Award, named in honor of Terry Finklein, who served as the hospital’s CEO for over 20 years, recognizes a volunteer leader who has gone above and beyond to advance philanthropy at the hospital and in the community. Last year’s recipient, Michael Autio, presented the award to Willis Van Dusen—long time mayor of Astoria and a community leader who has raised millions of dollars for programs throughout Clatsop County—including leading the fundraising effort for the new cancer center, which raised $3 million.

The President’s Award, named for CMH’s current President and CEO Erik Thorsen, recognizes a hospital employee. The 2017 recipient was Randy McClelland, director of CMH’s strategic initiatives department. McClelland was recognized for his work in coordinating the artwork in the new CMH-OHSU Knight Cancer Collaborative.

Penny Cowden, executive director of CMH Foundation said, “Everyone at CMH truly values our partners who help make the best healthcare possible accessible. It’s a privilege to be able to take an evening to just say, ‘Thanks.’”