Giving Strength is publication of the Office of Development at Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital–Needham.

The fourth issue of Giving Strength marks an important point in our history. Read it to learn about the exciting developments that we believe will shape health care in the community for years to come.

Spring 2017 Issue #4
Fall 2016 Issue #3
Giving Strength Online Extras

Petrini_print2.jpg#asset:6582:urlFor as long as the Needham community can remember, the Petrinis have been builders. A long-time fixture in the community, Needham-based Petrini Corporation has developed and restored hundreds of commercial properties and fine homes in Needham and surrounding towns. But this passion for building extends far beyond the family business. For more than 30 years, the generosity of the Petrini family has helped expand and strengthen BID–Needham. Their most recent gift, to the hospital’s Cancer Center and Surgical Pavilion Campaign, underscores the family’s instrumental role in BID–Needham’s evolution and growth.

Laying the long-term foundation

The Petrini family has been lending their generous support to BID–Needham since the beginning. In addition to contributing to the hospital’s last three major capital campaigns, Lynn and Gary have at various times served on the Board of Trustees and Board of Advisors, and supported the gala and annual fund. “Between the two of us, we’ve been involved in almost every way possible,” says Lynn of her and Gary’s involvement. “We share a long-term commitment to this hospital’s growth and success.”

Lynn and Gary’s son Greg, who is the current President and CEO of Petrini Corporation, is continuing the family’s tradition of engagement. He was elected to the Board of Advisors in 2006 and the Board of Trustees in 2007. He is also Chair of the Compensation Committee, a member of the Master Facilities Planning and Gala Committees, a former member of the Governance and Nominating Committee and has served on the Construction Oversight Committee for two major projects.

Contributing to world-class care

In 2013, the family made one of its most significant gifts, naming the Consult Room on the first floor of the Lank Cancer Center. It’s a quiet, warm space where patients and family members can meet with their care team to discuss treatment options. It embodies the intersection of world-class medicine and patient-focused care that makes BID–Needham unique.

“We all recognize that the hospital’s expansion—both in its physical size and its offerings—is a great benefit to the community,” says Greg. “People expect to receive world-class health care close to home and we’re lucky to have that right here in Needham.”

Support comes full circle

The Petrinis’ 30-plus years of support took on new meaning when Gary recently became a patient at BID–Needham. Suddenly, the family experienced firsthand the patient-centric, personalized care that they have been so instrumental in building. “From intensive care to the emergency room, everyone was so compassionate to Gary,” says Lynn. “We’ve always believed in the hospital, but having Gary there really gave us a new perspective on everything it offers. We’ve had that experience personally.”

When asked to reflect on the impact of his family’s contributions to BID–Needham, Greg says he is most proud of the hospital’s physical transformation. “As a builder and developer, it is very gratifying to see the tangible results of giving,” he says. “You can literally see the progress from donor support over the years. Seeing those changes and knowing what it means for the community is incredibly rewarding.”

Supporting BID–Needham has become a cornerstone of the Petrinis’ philanthropy and an important part of the family’s legacy. “All of us in the family are highly committed to giving back locally and the hospital is an important way to demonstrate that type of community impact,” says Lynn. “When you commit your time and resources, you can see the benefit of your efforts. For our family, the hospital is proof of that.”


kveraga.jpg#asset:6588:urlFor many patients, the scariest part of the surgery experience is the potential for pain. Enter the anesthesiology department at BID–Needham. Anesthesiologists like Riki Kveraga, MD, play a critical role in the patient’s surgical experience—and peace of mind—before, during and after a procedure.

Dr. Kveraga, chief of anesthesiology at BID–Needham, says she and her team of 26 anesthesiologists and nurse anesthetists are first and foremost focused on quality of care and the patient experience. “We are very proactive with pain management, so each patient’s surgery and recovery is the very best it can be,” says Dr. Kveraga. “It’s at the center of what we do.”

The whole package

All of the anesthesiologists practicing at BID–Needham are Harvard Medical Faculty Physicians who are also on staff at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC). They actively teach and work alongside Harvard Medical School fellows and students in Boston. In BID–Needham’s operating rooms, they have the opportunity to “work to proactively connect with their patients—before, during, and after a procedure.”

“Our team truly understands the importance of the staff-patient connection,” says Dr. Kveraga. “We’re very hands on.”

When a patient’s post-operative pain is managed effectively, it leads to better outcomes and faster recovery, which is why BID–Needham’s anesthesiologists take a multi-disciplinary, customized approach to treating their patients. Working closely with the hospital’s surgical team, each patient is carefully evaluated, and a unique care plan developed.

A little diamond

During the recent campaign for BID-Needham’s Cancer Center and Surgical Pavilion, the BIDMC Department of Anesthesiology generously stepped forward to name one of the Pavilion’s operating rooms. The addition of these two state-of-the art operating rooms gives the team in Needham the best resources to care for patients. “The anesthesiologists who split their time in between Boston and Needham feel they have the best of both worlds—well-equipped campuses in both the city and in the community,” says Dr. Kveraga

“Dr. Kveraga is an outstanding young leader. Being able to bring her to Needham demonstrates how we are able to tie the anesthesia department at BID–Needham to the department at BIDMC in order to provide the same outstanding care across the network,” says department chair Daniel Talmor, MD.

“BID–Needham is like a little diamond in the middle of Needham,” adds Dr. Kveraga. “There’s so much to offer.”


If you want to get to the heart of what makes BID–Needham so special, just ask Mark Haffenreffer, MD.

Dr. Haffenreffer, a prominent orthopaedic surgeon and long-time member of BID–Needham’s Department of Orthopaedics, has a truly unique perspective on the hospital, one informed by his role as a long-standing provider, a major donor, and the parent of a patient. “It’s a culmination of experiences that is very rare,” he says. “I know this place in a unique way. The medical care is not only outstanding, but there are so many intangibles—the kindness of every person you encounter, from the valets to the registration attendants, to the  volunteers and the nurses. It’s the common language of caring.”

Communication, community and commitment

Before launching the BID–Needham Orthopaedics Joint Replacement program in 1983, Dr. Haffenreffer served as Chief Resident at the Harvard Combined Orthopaedic program at Brigham & Women’s Hospital. While his training and experience could have taken him anywhere, he chose to cement his career in Needham. “I stayed because I was convinced we deliver world-class care,” he says matter-of-factly. “It’s really that simple. We are excellent at what we do and every one of us is committed to providing the best to our patients.”

He says that while the new Cancer Center & Surgical Pavilion in Needham has brought the hospital to a whole new level, it’s important not to overlook some of the hospital’s other key strengths. “We excel in areas where immediate, intensive interaction is required,” he says. “Because we’re small, patients get here easily and complex cases are worked up quickly. There is organic communication between providers within the hospital and between staff and patients. When we need a consult, we call a person, not a department.”

Dr. Haffenreffer jokingly refers to the culture at BID–Needham as producing a ‘Roche Bros. effect.’ “People know you here and will spot you at the supermarket 10 years later. Being part of this community, your work and your name are on display. As a physician at BID–Needham you have to be committed to providing every patient with care that you can stand behind and feel good about.”

No stone left unturned

The doctor experienced BID–Needham’s powerful combination of medicine and human connection firsthand when the hospital cared for his daughter, Annie. Annie suffered from RETT Syndrome, a rare neurological disorder that left her at a developmental standstill since she was six months old. “Think of her as having no hard drive,” Dr. Haffenreffer says.

Due to the complexity of Annie’s case, she required constant monitoring and care. Dr. Haffenreffer says that the hospital excelled on every level. “Medically,there was never a question of anything ever being missed. I always felt confident that no stone was left unturned.” But just as important to Dr. Haffenreffer was the humanity and compassion that he saw in every staff interaction with his daughter. “They were always checking in to see what she needed,” he says. “When I slept in Annie’s room at night, nurses came by to make sure we were ok. Her case was very demanding, but the team constantly looked for ways to make things a little better for her. I truly believe it extended her life.”

Honoring Annie

Annie passed away in 2013 at the age of 22. To celebrate her life, and the BID–Needham community who cared for her, Dr. Haffenreffer made a significant gift to the hospital. He named the vestibule in the BID Cancer Center & Surgical Pavilion in Annie’s memory and in honor of her caretakers. More than 80 members of the hospital community attended the dedication ceremony. He feels it’s a fitting tribute. “Annie’s life was built around hope and going through tough times to get to the good times,” he says. “This hospital is a place that embraces that kind of message.”


trotman.jpg#asset:6590:urlAlex Trotman loved a good cup of coffee. The former Ford Motor Company Chief Executive Officer, who passed away suddenly in 2005 at a community hospital in England, was responsible for more than 350,000 employees at the automotive giant, but appreciated the time to sit down with a colleague for a break. When the Trotman Family Charitable Trust donated $500,000 in his honor to support the hospital's Cancer Center and Surgical Pavilion Campaign, they thought it would be fitting to name a place where many could find similar respite from the hospital setting—its café.

“He was just a great family man, a great people person and a very low-key individual,” Valerie Trotman says of her late husband. “I wanted to name something that everybody can see and use—patients, employees, visitors—and it’s a nice place to take my grandchildren.”

The hospital’s signature café, which has been a staple in the Needham community since it opened in 1962, was relocated to the first floor inside the main entrance and was officially named The Trotman Family Glover Café.

“My father would be very happy that BID–Needham provides local services for people who are battling cancer,” says Helen Trotman, Alex and Valerie’s daughter. “This facility is helping patients living locally and reduces the stress of traveling into Boston for care.” One year after opening, the Lank Cancer Center has provided over 15,000 cancer treatments to the community.

The gift from The Trotman Family Charitable Trust was one of the largest donations to the campaign. “It is so important to our greater community to have such a fabulous facility staffed by people of the quality that you would get in Boston,” says Samantha Burman, the Trotmans’ daughter and a member of the BID–Needham Board of Trustees. “It has become an important part of how my family and I want to give back to the community to make sure that the hospital maintains its visibility and continues to be a strong service to this area.”

Stop by the Trotman Family Glover Café. Open Monday through Friday from 7 am–6 pm and Saturdays from 8 am–2 pm. To view weekly menus, visit


johnstones.jpg#asset:6591:urlLongtime Needham residents Bruce and Holly Johnstone have been supporting BID–Needham for more than a decade. Their generous support of the annual fund, gala and multiple capital campaigns demonstrates a deep commitment to the hospital and to the community they call home.

Perspectives on the hospital’s evolution

Bruce: “This hospital has grown so much… it’s no longer just the local emergency room. The state-of-the-art facilities here are comparable to those found in Boston. The Lank Cancer Center is just one example of the transformation. It has been amazing to witness.”

The human touch

Holly: “But it’s not just about the buildings—it’s the people who make the hospital a special place. They are so in tune with the community—so warm and friendly. There’s a human quality that you feel the minute you walk through the door.”

A lasting first impression

Holly: “Sometimes just one interaction makes a huge impression and from our very first visit to BID–Needham for preventive care before a trip to Nepal, it was clear that people cared about our well being. A few years later Bruce came down with Lyme disease and we again saw that level of compassionate care. That’s when our entire family began using the hospital.”

Going local

Bruce: “There is a certain amount of pride in giving to a local institution and knowing that your support is helping it grow. We’ve had friends receive cancer treatment at BID–Needham—the fact that they could stay close to home was a huge benefit. There are a lot of people (in the area) who rely on this place.”

The value of giving

Bruce: “We want to share what we have to make society better and we want to support specific institutions based on their mission. We give to many institutions, but we feel very strongly about the ones that can really make a difference, to either the local community, to the state or to the world. We give to BID–Needham because it provides high quality care and because it serves our community. It’s rewarding to know that we’ve played a role in building these facilities. Bringing this level of care to the community is something we’re both immensely proud of.”

To learn more about how you can give back and make an impact on your community, visit


A conversation with Michael Lombard, Chair of the Board of Advisors

Lombard_9_46.jpg#asset:6571:urlTalk about your history with BID–Needham.

I grew up in Needham and am raising my family here, so I have always understood the hospital’s important role in the community. In fact, having a community hospital was a requirement for my parents when moving to Needham. As one of eight children, they knew it would come in handy. They were right. I spent one of my first nights in Needham in the Emergency Department getting stitches. Then, about ten years ago, Lynn Petrini encouraged me to get involved. At the time, all of my board involvement and philanthropy had been in Boston. This was the first time I became involved locally and I have been actively engaged on some level ever since. It feels like a natural way to  give back.

What are the biggest changes you’ve witnessed?

Our affiliation with BIDMC has fueled so much growth. We’ve built the new inpatient unit, Emergency Department, Lank Cancer Center and Surgical Pavilion. Health care evolves so rapidly, and we’ve been on the forefront of the shift of health care delivery to the community setting. The hospital has never lost sight of the caring, personal side of medicine. I think that’s what sets us apart. That’s what motivates me.

What’s been the most rewarding part of your involvement?

Watching a new facility being built and seeing the tangible results of your work is extremely gratifying. It is satisfying to be able to lend  your efforts to a place where you can witness the results and see your friends, family and neighbors benefit firsthand. I’d also say that meeting such dedicated people through my involvement has been incredibly rewarding. It’s a great team—management, trustees, advisors, physicians and staff— and everyone shares the common goal of making this a better place.

Is there an area of the hospital that is meaningful to you?

My family has received care at BID–Needham and we have always had trememdous respect for the nursing staff. The nurses are extremely dedicated and they do a fantastic job. When a patient receives truly compassionate nursing care, it can make all the difference.

What gets you most excited when you think about the future of BID–Needham?

I’m looking forward to the opening of a new Breast Care Center in 2016. There has been a lot of thought put into the design of the center to create a calm and comfortable experience for diagnosis and treatments. It will be a fully integrated facility with all of the latest imaging technologies—there will really be no need to go anywhere else.

Tell us about your role as the Chair of the Board of Advisors.

As Chair, I act as a conduit between the Trustees and the Advisors. We have an incredibly talented group of advisors that lend their expertise, support and ambassadorship. They are critically important to our continued success and the first place we turn to when filling a Board of Trustees seat. It’s humbling to know that they could be on any board in the city, but they’ve chosen us. The breadth and depth of our outreach in the community is far greater than its ever been because of them. With all this talent, dedication and motivation, there’s no limit to what we can achieve. I’m excited to see what happens in the next 10 years at BID–Needham.


IMG_8407-2.JPG#asset:6592:urlMarian Knapp is a 45-year-long Newton resident and chair of the Newton Council on Aging. As executor of the Edward and Sylvia Goldberg Estate, she has helped fulfill her aunt and uncle’s philanthropic wishes to give back to the hospital that meant so much to them, to honor their lives, and to create a meaningful legacy. Marian chose to name the BID Cancer Center & Surgical Pavilion’s Viewing Garden and two nursing stations in Edward and Sylvia’s memory, knowing that those spaces would have felt special to them as long-time patients of BID–Needham.

“My Aunt Sylvia and Uncle Eddie moved to Needham in the late 1950s,“ she says. ”They received care at the hospital for many years and it became a place of great support for them. That’s why my aunt felt strongly that a portion of their estate should go to BID–Needham.”

“Sylvia had heart disease and was a patient at the hospital’s anti-coagulation clinic. I was always struck by how the staff and volunteers treated her when she was there. They were her friends. There was one nurse in particular who would sit with Sylvia whenever she came in, just to ask how she was feeling. A trip to the clinic was a chance for my aunt to spend time with people who cared about her. That’s why she loved going.”

“There is a particular memory that sticks with me. I was at the clinic with Sylvia one day—waiting for a test result—and she mentioned that she was craving a BLT. I took her to the Trotman Family Glover Café for lunch, where they prepared, as Sylvia said, ‘the best sandwich I ever had.’ I had never seen my aunt as happy as she was sitting and eating that sandwich. It was a little thing that meant so much.”

“When I think back on my aunt and uncle’s experience at BID–Needham, I am thankful that we have a place like this in our community. I can also see that the hospital is listening to the needs of the community as it grows. The expansion is proof of that. I know that Eddie and Sylvia would be thrilled to see that their donation has helped build something so amazing.”

To date, the Edward and Sylvia Goldberg Estate gift is one of the largest gifts to the campaign. For more information on leaving a lasting legacy through bequests, legacy gifts, and planned giving, please visit


Friedman2.jpg#asset:6579:urlThe Lank Cancer Center in Needham recently marked its two-year anniversary; the two-floor, 20,000-square-foot facility combines the latest technologies in advanced cancer diagnostics and radiation therapies. Since opening the BID Cancer Center and Surgical Pavilion in 2014, patients in the community have benefitted from over 7,000 surgical cases, nearly 12,000 radiation treatments, over 6,000 hematology/oncology visits and over 6,000 infusions.

In addition to bringing Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center’s (BIDMC) expert care to the community, the comprehensive Lank Cancer Center in Needham was thoughtfully conceived by a multidisciplinary team to create a patient-first experience. “We had two main goals—the first, to deliver BIDMC’s university-quality care in the community, so that patients would not have to choose between quality of care and convenience,” says Stuart Berman, MD, Needham Site Director, Radiation Oncology, BIDMC. “And, the second goal was to design a center for patients by patients. I think we’ve achieved both of these goals and the Lank Cancer Center in Needham has exceeded our expectations.”

Patient input had a major impact on the design of the building. “When we talked to patients, one of the most requested design elements was to minimize travel to different services and maintain an integrated feeling among the caregivers, space and patient experience. We made the decision then to move Radiation Oncology up to the same floor as Hematology/Oncology and the infusion suite to create a totally integrated patient care environment," says Jayne Carvelli-Sheehan, RN, MSN, Senior Vice President, Ambulatory and Emergency Services.

Normally, Carvelli-Sheehan says, radiation therapy is conducted underground because the linear accelerators which deliver radiation require heavy lead and concrete shielding, a major engineering and construction challenge. “We made this a priority to take Radiation Oncology out of the basement and design a space where patients can receive treatments surrounded by natural light, beauty, art and healing gardens.” A typical course of radiation treatment requires a patient to have daily visits for up to six weeks. Having this advanced technology and treatment locally in a nurturing setting makes all the difference for patients.

Robb Friedman, MD, Medical Director of the Lank Cancer Center, says Needham offers the best of both worlds: “We’ve brought well-coordinated, multi-disciplinary academic cancer care to the suburbs. We are able to manage and treat our patients in a comfortable and convenient setting, while working with subspecialists at BIDMC to provide individualized care.” Access to the latest treatments at BIDMC provides the most advanced technologies for cancer care, such as CyberKnife radiation therapy in Boston, a non-invasive alternative to surgery to pinpoint and target tumors using real-time, image-guided robotics. The Keith C. Field CyberKnife Center at BIDMC remains the first and most experienced center in New England.

“Patients love getting their care in Needham and there’s a lot of community pride in the Lank Cancer Center,” says Friedman. “We are so grateful to the Lanks for their generosity and for the support from the local community. World-class patient care is a team effort and we still need more people to help. Philanthropy is the driving force to do that."

Learn more about the Lank Cancer Center at


No two people embody a lifetime commitment to philanthropy quite like Althea and Bertram “Buddy” Lank. When Althea and Buddy Lank became involved with BID–Needham over a decade ago, they were among the first philanthropists to understand the potential and value in having a community hospital in Needham associated with a world-class, Harvard-affiliated academic medical center. Steadfast in their dedication and generosity, the Lanks have been integral in making BID–Needham what it is today.

Their recent gift to BID–Needham’s capital campaign is the largest in the hospital’s history. In recognition of this transformative support, the Beth Israel Deaconess Cancer Center has been named in the family’s honor—the Lank Cancer Center. “Cancer affects everybody and when it does it stays with you,” says Althea. “We support Beth Israel Deaconess because the doctors, nurses and treatments are really helping people in the community.”

The Lank Cancer Center—a 20,000-square-foot facility that provides many of the same world-class services offered by Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston—is just one example of the family’s deep commitment to providing exceptional care in the community. “I think you have peace of mind when you’re somewhere near your home,” says Althea. “It makes you comfortable and that can make all the difference. We believe in what Beth Israel Deaconess is doing—bringing state-of-the-art cancer care to the people who live here.”

70 years of commitment

The family’s association with the Beth Israel Hospital began when Althea’s uncle, David Watchmaker, served as President of the Board of Trustees in 1943. But Althea really got to know the Beth Israel Hospital when her mother, Blanche Watchmaker Kaplan, was treated there for stomach cancer. “The care was state-of-the-art for the time and they treated her like family,” says Althea. “I’ve never forgotten that.”

Althea’s relationship with Beth Israel Hospital deepened in the mid-forties, during the post-World War II nursing shortage, when she began volunteering at the hospital. “One day, I saw plaques that recognized members of the women’s auxiliary who made contributions,” Althea says. “It was $100 for the plaque and $5 for it to be mounted. The year after Buddy and I were married, I saved my money and put my own name on the wall.”

Respect for the past, belief in the future

That initial gift began a legacy of generosity that has grown with each passing decade and when BID–Needham joined the Beth Israel Deaconess system, it became a focal point of their support. At the time it was a small community hospital, but the Lanks recognized its potential to bring BIDMC’s state-of-the-art care closer to home.

“When we first went to Needham, we could see right away that the hospital was doing a phenomenal job in the community,” Buddy says. “Everywhere we went people were happy with their care. The community was growing and the hospital was growing with it. We knew our giving could play a role in supporting the hospital’s future.”

Althea and Buddy’s generosity has had a profound impact on the hospital. “When you see the gorgeous new facilities here at BID–Needham and hear about the amazing care people receive—that’s very important,” Althea says, explaining the family’s continued support. “We want to see BID–Needham continue growing into an even better place than it is today.”

The Lank legacy

Althea and Buddy have passed their spirit of giving on to their children: Sarah “Sunny” Gustin, Linda Chanowski and Joseph “Johnny” Lank. Both daughters are actively involved with BIDMC and their grandson Harley Lank served on BID–Needham’s Board of Trustees, while his wife Audra served on the Board of Advisors.

The Lanks’ nearly 70 years of giving have been instrumental in making the hospital what it is today. Althea says that while she and Buddy are both excited to be honored, their biggest hope is that others will follow in their footsteps. According to Althea, “In acts of charity, the most important piece of all is to inspire someone else to give.”

“Giving back is one of the best things you can do in life,” says Buddy.


needham-bank.jpg#asset:6593:url“As a local business, we take a great deal of pride in supporting the cities and towns we serve,” says Mark Whalen, CEO of Needham Bank. “And it’s obvious that BID–Needham shares our commitment to giving back to the local community.”

A longstanding supporter of the hospital, Needham Bank recently made a gift to name the first floor reception area of the BID Cancer Center & Surgical Pavilion. “BID–Needham was an impressive place even before the center opened,” says Whalen. “But the fact that people can now receive treatment locally, rather than going to Boston, is just remarkable.”

Going local

Needham Bank has built its business around a “buy local” and “bank local” philosophy—and takes a “give local” approach to philanthropy. “We donate to hundreds of local organizations every year," Whalen explains. “We see it as our responsibility to reinvest in the community by supporting groups that benefit our constituents.”

He also sees great value in a “go local” approach to health care. “The benefits of having BID–Needham in the community really can’t be overstated,” he says. “Whether it’s preventative care or a more serious situation, giving people easy access to high-quality medical care is more than just convenient, it’s essential.”

Whalen predicts great things for Needham and believes the hospital and bank will continue to play an important role. “The opportunities for both organizations to serve the community feel limitless,” he says. “We’re excited to continue partnering with BID–Needham to support the amazing things that are happening here.”


A conversation with Jennifer A. Pline, BID–Needham donor and Chair of the Board of Trustees

giving_strength_newsletter_09.10.jpg#asset:6566:urlWhat makes BID–Needham such an asset to the community?

It’s important for people to know that we’re a local hospital with an exceptional level of care. We provide a full range of services including surgery, cancer care, and access to an emergency room. It’s all right around the corner, in a setting that’s comfortable and caring.

Why is the connection to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) so important?

Our relationship with BIDMC is incredibly beneficial to the local community. It gives people in Needham and surrounding towns seamless access to a major academic medical center. That’s  something that a lot of people don’t appreciate until they need it. BIDMC shares our values of patient-centric, compassionate care.

What’s changed since you joined the board in 2005?

It’s been amazing to see BID–Needham grow into this incredibly well-run, world-class facility. The BID Cancer Center & Surgical Pavilion are the most visible and recent examples of our transformation, but we’ve also built a fantastic leadership team. They continue to attract amazing talent to the hospital. Without great people in place, the new facilities would really be just buildings.

Why do you donate to BID–Needham?

After a couple of years on the board, it felt natural that BID–Needham would become part of my family’s giving. It is amazing to see firsthand the power of community-level philanthropy and to know that our gift is supporting a world-class hospital that touches so many in the community.

What’s next?

Right now, the Board is helping to close out the capital campaign for the BID Cancer Center & Surgical Pavilion and working with leadership to help set a strategic direction for the next decade. We wouldn’t be where we are today without such an outpouring from the community, but we’re far from finished. There’s so much we can do. It’s a really exciting time to be here, but we can’t do it alone.

We need continued support from the community to make it a reality.

To see a full list of Board of Trustees and Advisors, visit


1460213091814.jpg#asset:6575:urlA devoted husband, father, brother, and son, Needham resident Sean Biggs achieved many accomplishments, including running six Boston Marathons and traveling to four different continents, while maintaining a successful career focused on the environment and clean energy. He did this all as he remained, “the most grounded and genuine person you have ever met,” according to his friend, Dave Jilek.

In late September of 2011, Sean was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer and received treatment at BID–Needham. He fought cancer with the same amazing spirit that he lived his life.

“Sean felt that getting care at BID–Needham, close to home, improved his quality of life—less time traveling meant more time together with his family,” said Jilek, board member of the Sean D. Biggs Memorial Foundation. “The Cancer Center here in Needham provides the opportunity for patients to receive the same amazing care available in Boston, right here in our backyard.” Biggs lost his battle to cancer in 2012. Sean’s friends, including Jilek, and family members started the Sean D. Biggs Memorial Foundation to raise awareness of the causes and prevention of cancer, assist those affected by cancer, and to support cancer research.

In honor of Sean’s love of running, the BIGGSteps Toward Cancer Prevention 5K, 1-Mile Walk and Kids’ Dash is held annually in Needham to support the foundation’s goals. The 5K route starts at Broadmeadow Elementary School and covers many of the roads Sean ran frequently during his marathon training. BIGGSteps Needham will be held on Sunday, November 13th, 2016 at Broadmeadow Elementary School in Needham, Mass.

“As we celebrate the second anniversary of the opening of the Beth Israel Deaconess Cancer Center and Surgical Pavilion, we are thankful for the Sean D. Biggs Memorial Foundation’s help in carrying on our mission to deliver high-quality cancer care in a community setting,” said Robb Friedman, MD, Medical Director for the BID Cancer Center.

“This year’s focus on everyday ways to prevent cancer can have a real impact on the community’s health to reduce their risk of certain cancers. Sean’s dedication to the Needham community and the work of his foundation to carry on his legacy are an inspiration. We are truly honored to receive the support of the ‘BIGGSteps Toward Cancer Prevention’ 5K road race.”

“We contribute to the fight against cancer to honor Sean and those who are currently fighting,” said Jilek.

To register for the BIGGSteps 5K in Needham on November 13, visit


BID–Needham's Medical Staff pledged $100,000 to the hospital’s new Cancer Center & Surgical Pavilion. It was one of the first gifts to the fundraising campaign and underscores our medical staff's commitment to serving patients by investing in the hospital.

“The Medical Staff at BID–Needham chose to give the largest gift in our history to this campaign because we wanted to show our support for this hospital and our patients and contribute to its success,” said Rebecca Stone, MD, BID–Needham Medical Staff president.

“The hospital is an integral part of Needham with the benefits of a small community hospital—easy access, instant hands-on care, and familiar faces—combined with world-class care,” said Perminder Dhillon, MD, former BID–Needham Medical Staff president. “For all these reasons... we  wanted to show our support.”

The BID–Needham Medical Staff includes the 646 physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants who are affiliated with the hospital. They pay annual dues, which are typically used for staff education and enrichment. When the campaign was announced, the Medical Staff Executive Committee voted to pledge funds from their budget over five years for the project. It was the group’s largest donation to date.

“When the BID–Needham Medical Staff made their significant gift, it underscored their enthusiasm for the project,” said John Fogarty, BID–Needham's President and CEO. “It reflected our staff's unique combination of experience, dedication, and commitment to this community, and set the tone for others to get involved.”

Spring 2016 Issue #2

Fall 2015 Issue #1