He could be golfing, coaching football, or cheering on the New York Yankees, but instead, Frank Antin volunteers his time, contributes new ideas, and lends his expertise by serving on Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital–Needham's (BID Needham) Board of Advisors. Getting involved with the hospital wasn't part of any master plan. In fact, the
former president and CEO of The Boston Company Asset Management became involved by chance. "A few years ago—right after I'd retired—I had my annual check-up with our family physician, Dr. David Buckle. He asked about my future plans. I said I wasn't sure, although I'd planned to coach high school football. Dr. Buckle suggested that I get involved with the hospital—mentioning that they might value someone with my financial background."
Now four years later, Antin is more involved than ever—moving from the hospital's Finance Committee to the Making a difference by giving back Development Committee, where he was able to apply his prior experience as foundation chairman for his alma mater, Southern Connecticut University. "At the end of the day, I'm a salesman. Besides, what better forum for selling than asking people to give back to a worthy cause?"
Antin's enthusiasm for the hospital is well founded. Having raised a family in the area before moving to Marion, Massachusetts, BID Needham was always the first option when an injury or illness befell a family member. But more recently, Antin became an even bigger fan when his daughter, Liz, was taken to the Emergency Department with a ruptured appendix. One of the surgeons who rotates between Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) and BID Needham performed an emergency appendectomy. "It was a dangerous situation and time was of the essence," said Antin. "My daughter came in on Friday night, was immediately operated on, and by Saturday morning, she was out of the woods and recovering. This is one of the closest people to me in my life and a mother of three. If this hospital wasn't here, something could have happened. It was a happy ending to something that could have turned out differently."
When it comes to giving back, Frank Antin leads by example. He recently made a gift to name the surgical pavilion reception area to support the $6 million capital campaign. When asked why he chose this particular naming opportunity, Antin says, "This place has always done a nice job of putting its arms around you when you come in the door. I wanted to be a part of that."
While he is committed to helping others, Antin feels that he gets something meaningful in return. "Everyone I've interacted with at this hospital, from John Fogarty on down, is very appreciative of each contribution, whether big or small, he said. "And it's not lip service. They really want to know what you're thinking. Getting that kind of feedback and response makes you want to do more. Here, you're made to feel that you're part of the process, that your ideas matter, and that you're making a difference."
Antin is grateful for his primary care physician, David Buckle, M.D. "I'm so glad he pointed me in this direction." said Antin. "BID Needham is a place with a vision, firmly planted in the 21st century, that is tied to some of the best medical care you can find anywhere in the country. I'm proud to be associated with it."