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History of Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital Foundation

In 1941, a group of civic-minded laymen and physicians formed the Salinas Community Hospital Association to provide quality Hospital facilities for the community.  With the advent of the Second World War, necessary materials and financing were not available, and the Hospital became a post-war project.

The name of the Hospital Association was changed in 1945 to the Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital Association in honor of those men and women of the community who had sacrificed their lives during the war.     

On June 9, 1947, the citizens of the community voted to form the Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital District.  Since that time, the Hospital District has been guided by a Board of Directors composed of five dedicated persons who are elected from the district and serve without salary.

On April 12, 1949, a bond issue for Hospital construction was submitted to the electorate and passed by the necessary two-thirds majority.  As a result of fund raising and bond issuance, the Board of Directors awarded the Hospital construction contract for 129 beds on November 13, 1950, in the amount of $2,305,600.        

The dedication ceremony was held on March 29, 1953.  The Hospital was dedicated to, “The health of the community in memory of the men and women of the armed forces who made the supreme sacrifice for the community and their nation.”      

As the community has grown, the Hospital District has expanded into healthcare services beyond the Hospital.  In 1997, the Board of Directors changed the name of the Hospital District to Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System (SVMHS) to more fully describe our ongoing growth in services to the community.          

The Hospital itself has grown to a 269-bed acute care hospital.


1972 - Board of Directors of the Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital District created a Declaration of Trust to receive  contributions for the Salinas Valley Memorial Fund of the Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital District.  The Fund's activities were directed by an Administrative Committee of nine to twelve members.

1974 - The first Distinguished Donor Wall was established for donors.

1976 - The first director of development and secretary were hired.  The Board of Directors of the Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital changed the name of the Fund to The Trust Fund for Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital.

1979 - District Board of Directors approved the Administrative Committee's recommendation to organize an operating foundation separately incorporated from the District.  Foundation was established with a 34 member Board of Governors and moved to larger quarters to accommodate three additional staff members.

1980 - Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital Foundation, Inc. received its letters of federal and state tax-exempt status, 501 ©3 nonprofit status.

1988 - Foundation held its first special event, the “Royal Feast in the Fields”.

1990 -"Throwing Away the Tin Cup" fund raising training for all members of the Board of Governors; first planned giving small group workshops for Governors.  First Annual "Los Paseos de los Rancheros" trail ride at Rana Creek Ranch. "Seeds for the Future" campaign begun.  First Annual “CMN Gourmet Gala”.  First Annual “Children’s Miracle Network Broadcast”  held at the Hospital.  

1991 - First "HUG" (Help Us Grow) employee campaign. First place prize in special events category of the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy Regional Development Showcase for "Los Paseos de los Rancheros."  First Annual "Las Estrellas del Valle" trail ride held at the Gavilan Ranch. 

1993 - The First Annual "Cherry's Jubilee" held at Laguna Seca.

1994 – First Annual "Dream Playhouse Auction".

1998 – At the Hospital’s request, the Foundation announced its $2-million Norman P. Andresen, M.D. Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Capital Campaign (Level II Nursery).  The Foundation welcomed the Children’s Miracle Network under its umbrella.

1999 – First Annual Foundation “CMN Golf Outing”.  

2000 – “Kid for a Night” new event benefiting the Children’s Miracle Network.  Nuclear Medicine Capital Campaign committee formed to raise funds for equipment needs.  Tree of Life Donor Wall is dedicated in memory of Eve Mills.

2002 – Capital Campaign to renovate the L.M. Tynan Emergency Department.

2003 – Event held to raise funds for an endowment for the Medical Museum.  Miracle Child Angel Gonzalez attends National CMN event to represent California.

2004 – First Annual “Berries and Branches” Holiday Home Tour.  Fund Raising Campaign for lifesaving automatic external defibrillators (AEDs) to be placed in law enforcement cars throughout Monterey County.  The Foundation become licensed to sell Annuities.  Campaign to endow Chaplaincy position at hospital.

2005 – Grand opening of the William R. Whitney Family Waiting Room.  Pharmacy renamed the Oreggia Family Pharmacy.

2006 – Medical Museum in the Downing Resource Center opened.  Miracle Child Haley Baxter attends National CMN event to represent California.

2007 – Paramedic services for Highway 68 corridor fund raising campaign.

2008 – Capital Campaign committee raised funds for the new Norman P. Andresen Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.  Had fund raising campaign for the DaVinci robotic surgery system.

2009 – Capital Campaign committee raises funds for the new Simulation Lab in the new Education building.  First Annual “Sporting Clay Shoot” was held at Arroyo Seco Rod and Gun Club.

2010 – Raised funds for the Nancy Ausonio Mammography Center.  Opening of the Tom Merrill Lobby in memory of Tom Merrill.

2011 - CMN started funding the Days of Discovery program in collaboration with the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

2012 – The Sporting Clay Shoot event was changed to a Trap Shoot event.

2013 – Funds are raised for the new Pediatric Sleep Lab. 

2014 – First Annual “Dance Dash” event held at Cal State Monterey Bay.  Miracle Child Molly attends National CMN event to represent California.

2015 – Taylor Farms Family Health and Wellness Center built, funded by Capital Campaign headed up by Norm Nelson, M.D.  Golf outing rebranded as the Founders' Cup Golf Invitational to honor the incredible act of philanthropy enacted by our community.

2016 – Raising funds for the new Diabetes and Endocrine Center.  First Physicians Giving Campaign.