Paying it forward at the hospital that saved her daughter
The donor Jodi Kovitz The gift: Helping to raise $25-million The cause: Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children
The reason: To fund a chair in biomedical artificial intelligence and a new emergency department.
Jodi Kovitz’s daughter was two years old when she developed a series of rare infections that required months of treatment at Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children. Her daughter pulled through and is now a healthy nine-year-old, but Ms.Kovitzh as never forgotten the professional care her family received from the hospital’s staff. “We slept there a lot of nights and had 14 different specialists at any given time,” recalled Ms. Kovitz, who founded Move the Dial, an organization dedicated to advancing women in the tech sector.
Last year, she joined the SickKids’ capital campaign and decided to aim her efforts at the tech sector. Together with Salim Teja, president of venture services at MaRs Discovery District, Ms. Kovitz came up with several fundraising ideas. One involved encouraging tech entrepreneurs to pledge a percentage of the equity in their companies to the hospital, so that once the business went public, or was acquired, the exit triggered a donation. Last year, Zensurance, a Toronto-based digital insurance company, pledged 1 per cent of its equityand, in August, the company sold a portion of the business, generating a donation worth more than $100,000. So far, Tech4SickKids has raised $3.6-million, not including the stock pl edges, and the goal is to raise $25- million.
“My No .1 goal in life was to meaning fully giveback to the hospital and ensure that future generations of kids have the same level of outstanding care that I did,” Ms. Kovitz said.