Donor profile

Dignity Health employee donor Suzan Konell with volunteers.Suzan Vida Konell is vice president and associate general counsel – regulatory affairs in the legal department. She has 32 years of service with Dignity Health. She has supported many areas at Dignity Health philanthropically including Northridge Hospital Medical Center's Center for Assault Treatment Services (CATS), California Hospital Medical Center and Hope Street, Community Hospital of San Bernardino, the Human Trafficking Response Program, and more.

1. What area do you philanthropically support and why?

The CATS program provides forensic examinations to children who are alleged victims of sexual assault. Children are also victims of human trafficking and sexual assault. I have had the privilege of supporting both of these critical programs on behalf of the Dignity Health legal department to assure that they have the legal support to continue to provide these critical services. In addition, I have participated in fundraisers for CATS (get their annual April run on your calendar!!) including providing the proceeds of donations from those who enjoyed many jars of my homemade jam! 

Holly Gibbs is an exceptional leader providing education to identify victims and potential victims of human trafficking ... her work to share those tools with other health care leadership demonstrates working collaboratively toward a common goal to alleviate crimes against the most vulnerable. As a former health educator, I am proud to be part of her team!

2. What motivated you to start giving? 

My first encounter with CATS provided me with the opportunity to get acquainted with such dedicated, compassionate health care providers who were touching  such a fragile population; I had the same experience when I got to know Vickie Kroepenske at California Hospital Medical Center and the Hope Street program. Hope Street became a nationally recognized Project Head Start Program and expanded to touch children and their families to include education, literacy training, and mental health services to assure that the children had the opportunity to have healthy productive lives. I felt gifted to be able to use my health education background and legal skills to support the efforts of these extraordinary individuals.

Dignity Health employee donor Suzan Konell with her son.3. Why do you think it’s important to be engaged through philanthropy as a Dignity Health employee?

Our work environment is one of our most important personal communities. As health care professionals, we devote our skills daily to provide healing services to our patients and their families. Philanthropy allows me to more completely engage and connect in those healing services and the ministry of our corporation…to touch and support those who are most vulnerable and to in some small way make their lives better. 

4. What is your fondest memory of working at Dignity Health?

So many! the opening of the Hope Street Family Center. Running the Jimmy Steward Relay with so many of my Dignity Health colleagues. Fabricating blankets and visiting the patients at Community Hospital of San Bernardino in the long-term neuro care facility that received them.

5. What is a fun fact others might not know about you?

I'm a runner, hiker, knitter, “jammer” and have cycled through Israel, Canada, Hawaii, and California
on a tandem! I've volunteered in Belize and Haiti on Medical Missions. I Love my dog Zoe. Most of all, I treasure and adore my two adult children Mauri and Charlie.