Coronado Hospital Foundation’s 32nd Annual Gala A Huge Success

Coronado Hospital Foundation’s Gala Nets $360,000, Honors Sharp-affiliated Physicians Tarek Hassanein, MD and Joseph Jankiewicz, MD. Anonymous $2.5 Million Gift Announced in Support of Emergency and Intensive Care.

A perfect evening set the stage on Saturday, May 11, as nearly 400 guests were welcomed to the historic Hotel del Coronado for the Foundation’s 32nd annual spring-time Gala.

Phyllis Walker, Janice Lowenberg, Joseph Jankiewicz MD, Nora Boswell, Tarek Hassanein, MD. Submitted photo

This year’s Under the Sea themed Gala was co-chaired by enthusiastic Coronado residents Janice Lowenberg and Phyllis Walker. The benefit to support Sharp Coronado Hospital raised a record net of $360,000, while also honoring two extraordinary physicians, Tarek Hassanein, MD and Joseph Jankiewicz, MD.

Following a sparkling cocktail and silent auction reception, guests enjoyed dinner and dancing to the music of the Beatles and the Beach Boys by the entertainment group Paperback Writer. The evening’s décor included beautifully hand-crocheted starfish and octopus created by Gala Committee member Katie Moore, and aquatic-themed centerpieces made by the gala committee. Sea blue up-lights were strategically placed in the Ballroom for an elegant underwater vibe.


Honored physicians were presented with an elegant glass-shaped starfish – inspired by The Starfish Story – as a symbol of appreciation for “making a difference” in patients’ lives. Gala co-chairs were given beautiful spring bouquets and recognized for their immeasurable contributions to the Foundation and for leading the way to the most successful gala in its history.

Coronado Hospital Foundation Board Chair, Scott Metzger, Susan Stone, CEO, Sharp Coronado Hospital, Chris Howard, President and CEO, Sharp HealthCare took to the podium, welcomed guests and spoke of the Hospital’s recently announced $12 million capital campaign to transform the Emergency Department and Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at Sharp Coronado Hospital.

Gala proceeds will support the campaign and funds will allow the Emergency Department’s current eight beds to nearly double to 15 by expanding the department’s footprint into the existing ICU. The hospital’s fourth floor will house six state-of-the art private rooms for ICU patients. The fourth floor will also feature several acute-care patient rooms and a lounge for patients’ loved ones.

Among the event’s sponsors present was Presenting Sponsor, the Auen Foundation. “Throughout Ron and Sherrie Auens’ many years of involvement, their compassion and unwavering dedication to Coronado’s local hospital personifies the heart and soul of the community,” said Sandy Gross, Senior Development Officer.

Generous Sponsors included: The Sharp Coronado Hospital Medical Staff. Gold Coral Sponsors: Bob Campbell and Becci Rocco, Great Star Coral Sponsors: Sally and Dr. Kevin Considine, Sharon and Timothy Considine, Bruce and Betsy Gill, Hotel del Coronado, The Lowenberg Family, Mary B. Sandermann, Carol Sommer, Phyllis Walker and Dr. and Mrs. John Wells. Blue Coral Sponsors: Allan and Lyndsey Arendsee, Madhu Arora, Bud Baker and Carolyn Elledge-Baker, CalPrivate Bank, Emerald Textiles, Hayes Hart CPAs, Wealth Management, Inc., Chris and Linda Howard, Mr. and Mrs. Russell L. Johnson, and The Lipp Family Foundation, Kathie and Jim Parish, Bob and Patty Payne, In loving memory of Elsie Jane and Robert T. Plumb MD, Paula, Martha, Margaret, Bob, and Jim, Progressive Management Systems, Sharp Community Medical Group, Southern California GI & Liver Centers, and Southern California Research Center.

The highlight of the evening was a video featuring Gala Honorees, Tarek Hassanein, MD and Joseph Jankiewicz, MD, and Sharp Coronado CEO, Susan Stone.

To help to transform and bring the most advanced Emergency and Intensive Care services to Coronado Island, guests raised their bid numbers high and often during the exciting and fast-paced live auction and fund-a-need led by auctioneer Graham Sterling.

Scott Metzger was beyond grateful to the generous donors for the support that will help to provide the community with the emergency and intensive care they expect and deserve. He expressed gratitude to all sponsors, underwriters, donors, to the gala committee and the event’s volunteers. In closing, Scott shared that an anonymous leader in the community has made a $2.5 million gift to the project bringing fundraising to $5 million to the $12 million goal.

Coronado Hospital Foundation is a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit organization. To learn more about the Foundation’s upcoming golf tournament on September 12, 2019 at Coronado Municipal Golf Course, please contact Sandy Gross at 619 522-3766 or

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Originally from upstate New York, Dani Schwartz has lived in Coronado since 1996. She is thrilled to call Coronado home and raise her two children here. In her free time enjoys hitting the gym, reading, and walking her dog around the “island.”Have news to share? Send tips, story ideas or letters to the editor to: