Greg and Nancy Carlson are wonderful community leaders and dedicated supporters of HealthFinders Collaborative (HFC). Greg, CEO and founder of Carlson Capital Management, an integrated wealth management firm, is incredibly committed to promoting philanthropy and volunteerism. He is a founder of the Northfield Area Foundation and 5th Bridge, which merged to become Northfield Shares. He also founded the American Center for Philanthropy to promote philanthropy within their client base.
Nancy is one of the warmest, most grace-filled individuals you will ever meet. She is actively engaged in WINGS (Women in Northfield Giving Support) and a nurse by trade. She volunteered for HealthFinders when HFC was operating out of the Little Prairie Church basement in Dundas. Carlson Capital Management is a frequent sponsor of HealthFinders’ annual spring gala (scheduled for March 21, 2020 – mark your calendars!), and Greg and Nancy often attend the event. Greg also participated in HealthFinders’ feasibility study and provided valuable insight for future growth.
HFC is very grateful to Greg and Nancy for sharing their time, talents, and treasure to help ensure all neighbors have access to the healthcare they need.
They were kind enough to answer a few questions about their support of HFC.
How did you first learn about HealthFinders?
As a nurse who travelled on many mission trips to Nicaragua, Nancy was engaged in providing healthcare for those who did not have it. HealthFinders was a natural extension for her to use her skills and make a difference in the lives of people who did not have adequate healthcare, and it was a way she could serve in our local community. Nancy observed other healthcare professionals and volunteers giving their time, which inspired her to help as well.
Why do you think it is important to support the work of HealthFinders?
Every individual deserves to have their basic needs met, and healthcare is one of those needs. There are people whose circumstances simply do not allow them to access healthcare or live a healthy life. We need to help, both at an individual level and at a larger societal level. The first and main reason we support HealthFinders is that in a very tangible and immediate way HealthFinders improves the lives of the people for whom care is needed. As a society, and as people, we need to act to take care of those who are less fortunate.
There is a second reason, a very practical reason, that we financially support HealthFinders. It is one of leverage. All of us like it when we can do something that has a multiplier effect. As donors, we feel in many cases we get a 10x return through HealthFinders. We have many skilled healthcare professionals (doctors, dentists, nurses, technicians, and more) who donate their time and skill sets. When we non-healthcare professionals give money, it provides for the infrastructure, services, and supplies that leverage the wonderful gift of time and skill that healthcare providers give. When you add the other gifts given by the medical community/industry – by way of equipment and supplies – our dollars are truly getting a leveraged 10x return, all going toward individuals in need.
Furthermore, there are studies (and practical sense bears this out as well) that not only are our donor dollars and organizations like HealthFinders improving the lives of real people in need, but they are actually reducing the overall cost (and burden) that healthcare is placing on our society. Every dollar that goes into healthcare that is wasted, or is inefficient, is a dollar that can be used for other productive purposes, including more preventive healthcare. HealthFinders reduces the number of unnecessary (because there are no other options) and extremely expensive ER visits. HealthFinders serves a population that does not have access and, through their work, prevents much more serious and costly care in the future. HealthFinders works to keep people well and prevent health decline before the situation deteriorates into an endless spiral of money and damaged lives.
It is important to work to make a positive difference in individual lives. Through HealthFinders, we get to do that and potentially make a far larger impact as well.
What are your hopes and dreams for HealthFinders and our community?
In the big picture, we hope HealthFinders is “worked out of a job,” as that would mean we have a comprehensive solution to providing for the needs of the larger community. That likely will not be the case any time soon, so we hope HealthFinders is funded, supported, and run in an efficient way to care for more underserved people. It is cliché to say, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” but this is an area in which HealthFinders truly has material impact.