Hospital Donors and Leaders Make a Difference

CMH Foundation Hosts First Tribute to Giving To Thank Donors

ASTORIA, Ore. – The Columbia Memorial Hospital Foundation thanked its donors Thursday evening through a tribute to giving. The guests were entertained by a rousing chorus of opera and show tunes by the renowned group of entertainers known as The Three Waiters.

Most notably, donors were thanked for their support of and investment in the CMH/OHSU Knight Cancer Center, which is being built and is expected to open in the fall of 2017. The collaboration with Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) will offer patients the latest in cancer treatment, as well as all critical support services including an on-site pharmacy, a laboratory, massage therapy, nutritional and dietary services, and educational resources.

The evening was capped off by the presentation of two new awards established to honor extraordinary leadership that embodies the spirit of philanthropy both at the hospital and in the community. The President’s Award, named for CMH’s current President and CEO Erik Thorsen, recognizes a hospital employee.

The first recipient was Jeanette Schacher, manager of CMH’s Hospice program, which was named a Hospice Honors Recipient in 2014 by Deyta. She also established the highly popular and successful event, Race to the Bar, which this year raised over $25,000 to benefit hospice patients.

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. CMH Board Chair Heather Seppa presented the first Terry Award to Michael Autio.

Autio is the current board chair of CMH Foundation and has been actively involved with the Foundation and the hospital for over 22 years. Seppa said, “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.”

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.'”


Award winners Jeanette Schacher and Mike Autio (center) with CMH CEO Erik Thorsen at the CMH Foundation’s first annual event to thank donors.


The renowned musical comedy team The Three Waiters drew laughs and cheers from the audience at the CMH Foundation donor thank you event on Sept. 22.

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