Our First Network-Wide Celebration was a Smashing Success!

Hackensack Meridian Health Foundation raised $5 million at our inaugural Network-Wide Celebration at The Glasshouse in New York City, the proceeds of which will benefit the Hackensack Meridian Health Center for Discovery and Innovation. The evening honored the innovative work of David S. Perlin, Ph.D., and his dedicated team for all they did during the COVID-19 pandemic. It also remembered our beloved Dean Bonita Stanton, M.D. The evening was filled with great friends, delicious food and wonderful music thanks to the NJ Symphony and five-time Grammy Award winning artist Jon Batiste! We thank all our leadership, sponsors, dedicated donors and our guests who helped us make this event so special after two long years of not being able to host it in person.

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Tune In to Hackensack Meridian Health Foundation’s My Giving Story Video Series

Hackensack Meridian Health Foundation recently asked donors to tell them why they give to Hackensack Meridian Health in a new video series entitled "My Giving Story." Their words are incredibly inspirational and moving. We invite you to listen to their stories and join us in celebrating the impact of philanthropy across our network by clicking here.

Fighting Cancer is a Family Affair

The Waltuch and Slusarev families made a generous gift to benefit cancer research at John Theurer Cancer Center in honor of the care received. 

After Boris Slusarev was diagnosed with mantle cell lymphoma in the fall of 2017, he sought treatment at various hospitals in the tri-state area. However, each experience led him to feelings of uncertainty and disappointment. When he was referred to Andre Goy, M.D., chairman and chief physician officer at Hackensack Meridian John Theurer Cancer Center and physician-in-chief of Hackensack Meridian Health oncology, he felt a sense of renewed positivity and hope.

Upon his first appointment with Dr. Goy, Boris and his wife, Denise, were moved by his genuine compassion. As Boris continued his treatment with Dr. Goy, he could feel his sincere concern for his overall mental and physical health, not just his cancer.

“Dr. Goy is unlike any physician I have met before,” says Boris “He is unique, brilliant and a total guru. He has provided me with such hope, and has inspired me to exercise and challenge my mind daily. Because of him and his care, I am able to be here today.”

Boris, Denise and their family were filled with such immense gratitude for the care Boris received, that Norton and Anita Waltuch, his parents-in-law and Denise’s parents, made a $1 million gift to benefit John Theurer Cancer Center in honor of the compassionate care provided by Dr. Goy and his care team.

“We’ve been very lucky in life, and we are just relieved that Boris was able to get the wonderful treatment he deserved,” says Norton. “Denise was with him every step of the way, keeping us informed of his treatment and recovery. The comfort and care that Dr. Goy and his team provided our daughter and son-in-law is priceless. They saved his life, and we are happy to be able to make this gift as a token of our appreciation.”

Norton, who lives in Boca Raton, comes from humble beginnings and had a successful career on Wall Street. He and his wife consider themselves incredibly fortunate to be charitable at an older age, and often give to local Boca Raton organizations, including charities, schools and adoption agencies.

It is the hope of the Waltuch and the Slusarev families that this gift benefits cancer research conducted at John Theurer Cancer Center and throughout Hackensack Meridian Health to find a cure for lymphoma and other cancers. When Norton and Anita told Boris and Denise about the gift they would be making in honor of the care Boris received, they were blown away.

“Denise and I were stunned,” recalls Boris. “We couldn’t believe how much he and my mother-in-law were donating, and in honor of my care. It is such an overwhelming and emotional testament to the appreciation my family has for Dr. Goy and his team, and the love they have for me.”

What an incredibly selfless gift! We thank the Waltuch and Slusarev families for their extraordinary generosity that will be sure to impact cancer patients, and their families, today and in the future.

#morETHANaparty: Bar Mitzvah Raises Funds for Pediatric Mental Health Awareness

13-year-old Ethan Klein selflessly raised funds to benefit pediatric behavioral health in celebration of his Bar Mitzvah.

When getting ready to celebrate his Bar Mitzvah, 13-year-old Ethan Klein knew he wanted it to be more than a party. Inspired by his mother, Genna W. Klein, M.D., MBA, and her work in pediatric endocrinology, Ethan saw his Bar Mitzvah as an opportunity to raise funds to increase pediatric behavioral health resources for children with diabetes.

Dr. Klein, the vice chair for ambulatory services at Hackensack Meridian Children’s Health at Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital, observes children with diabetes and other chronic medical conditions that sometimes struggle with behavioral health, including depression and anxiety. This resonated with Ethan, and he set out to make a difference for these children.

“I chose this project because recently, I have realized that being aware of my own emotional health is important, but that kids who also have medical conditions could have it worse as they grow up,” says Ethan.

In March of 2022, Ethan created a fundraising page for his Bar Mitzvah Project, which saw incredible support from his family and friends. After his initial fundraising goal of $1,500 was surpassed, Ethan decided to keep his efforts going.

“I gradually increased my goal so that people could continue donating to this amazing cause,” says Ethan. “This was the first fundraiser that I started on my own, and it was so nice to see so many generous gifts made in support of other kids."

"I am so proud of Ethan in many ways,” says Dr. Klein. “His decision to raise money for this worthy cause impressed us all, and I plan to help his religious school teachers perpetuate this fundraising page so that the support can continue to grow!"

To date, Ethan has nearly doubled his original goal with more than $2,200 raised! To learn more about supporting Ethan’s Bar Mitzvah Project, visit his fundraising page. With May marking Mental Health Awareness Month, we thank Ethan for his compassion and dedication to helping fellow children when they need it most!

A Sweeth Tooth of a Gesture

Colleagues of educator and physician Frederic Paperth, DMD, recently established a Dental Technology Fund in his honor to benefit residents at Jersey Shore University Medical Center.

Throughout education, there are teachers and mentors that leave a lasting impression on those they guide. Frederic Paperth, DMD, the former residency program director at Hackensack Meridian Jersey Shore University Medical Center, stands as one of the doctors and educators who did just that.

During his more than 40-year tenure, Dr. Paperth was responsible for training hundreds of practicing dentists - doing so as a tireless worker and role model of humanism and professionalism. When Dr. Paperth stepped down from his role in September of 2021, fellow colleagues and friends - like David Kountz, M.D., MBA, MACP, co-chief academic office and vice president of Academic Diversity, and Paul Condello, director of Continuing Dental Education - at Jersey Shore University Medical Center set out to honor his outstanding career and admirable stature. With the goal to especially recognize his dedication to the advancement of continuing dental education, Dr. Kountz and Dr. Condello teamed up with Hackensack Meridian Health Foundation to create a giving page to support the Dr. Fred Paperth Dental Technology Fund.

“Dr. Paperth was a great mentor to generations of dentists,” says Dr. Kountz. “In addition to the actual practice of dentistry, he brought a sense of compassion and empathy for the challenges facing patients.” 

Funds raised will provide continued support to the Dental Residency Program that Dr. Paperth played a vital role in growing to the success it is today. Support will also allow the addition or upgrading of equipment in the Dental Center at the Booker Family Health Center, provide funds for residents to travel to professional development programs that enhance their skills or knowledge and establish an annual lectureship in the name of Dr. Paperth. And, perhaps most fittingly, support will also go towards formalizing a graduation award for Jersey Shore University Medical Center residents who embody the same qualities exhibited by Dr. Paperth throughout their own careers as they continue shaping future generations of aspiring dentists.

“Dr. Paperth dedicated his career to the advancement of dental education,” says Dr. Condello. “He always did everything possible to help our dental residents succeed."

To learn more about Dr. Paperth and the Dental Technology Fund created in his honor, please visit his donation page by clicking here. As we close out Dental Health Awareness Month, we thank Dr. Paperth for all he has done for the future of dentistry, and for impacting so many lives!

Thank you for your continued support! We cannot do the work we do without you.

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