Pullman Regional Hospital annual gala brings in nearly $192,000 in donations

Use of the money will go towards new surgery room and remodel of anesthesia care unit

GABRIELLE BOWMAN, Evergreen news co-editor

Pullman Regional Hospital held its sixteenth annual gala Saturday, Feb. 4 at the SEL Event Center and received $191,300 in donations. 

Around 266 people attended and 150 gifts were donated to the hospital. 

The hospital plans to use the donations made from the gala to create a fifth operating room in the hospital, said Stephanie Pierce, director of development in charge of the Annual Giving Program at Pullman Regional Hospital.

“When the hospital opened its doors in 2004 we only had three [operating rooms]. We have four currently and we’re expanding to a fifth, and that’s because so many people travel here for care because of the amazing care that they are provided by our wonderful care team,” Pierce said. 

With the money donated by attendees at the gala, Pullman Regional Hospital is also planning on remodeling the Post-Anesthesia Care Unit, she said. 

In the past, the annual gala has raised money for the same-day surgery expansion, the orthopedic center of excellence expansion, heart and neonatal health, birthplace items for the maternity ward, technology, the Palouse Heart Center, and so many other areas as well, Pierce said. 

It is all dependent on what the hospital determines is the highest need area for that year, and this year it was the expansion of a new surgery room.  

The gala this year included a premium wine tasting for guests as well as a local beer tasting by Paradise Creek Brewery. For dinner, the guests were served food from Fork in the Road, South Fork’s food truck and catering service. Then, an hour-long program introducing leaders of the event and stating the highest need for the hospital this year commenced which was followed by dancing.

“We dance and we have a lot of fun and enjoy the wonderful community that supports our hospital,” Pierce said. 

The reason the hospital puts on the gala each year is to help make money for the projects the hospital wants to take on that year, however, it is to also bring the community together and to celebrate the overall success of the hospital, said Linda Infranco, executive director of the Pullman Regional Hospital Foundation.

During the gala, the hospital introduced its new CEO, Matt Forge and Infranco herself, who has only been in her position since Jan. 9.  

“It was a really great, vibrant group of people, business leaders, community members, board members, volunteers of the hospital, so it was a really nice mix of people who attended this year,” Infranco said. 

Overall, the hospital is grateful for the community members, especially those who came out to the Gala event this year and continue to support the hospital.

“We couldn’t do these types of things without their support,” Infranco said.