Stan and Judy Strato of Sudbury recently made an impressive gift of $155,425 to the Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM). The gift will establish the Strato Family Endowment for the medical school, which has campuses in both Sudbury and Thunder Bay.
“We are not public people but we know how important it is to give back,” says Judy, a retired nurse and former director of imaging services at the former Sudbury General Hospital. “I have always been aware of the shortage of physicians in the North and I was extremely happy to see the medical school come to fruition. With this donation, it is hoped that others may be encouraged to do the same.”
Stan says his own cancer diagnosis led to many experiences with the health care system over the past few years. When he received a letter from NOSM in December, he connected it to his own health and the future of health care in his community, as well as the legacy of his family name.
“We are the only Strato family here, there is a legacy . . . and I certainly see the need for doctors, even more so with my cancer experience,” Stan says. The Stratos live close to the hospital and Stan says he realizes how lucky he is to have nearby access to care.
“I can see the hospital from my living room window and for me it’s less than five minutes away. I was going there for chemotherapy and radiation all the time, and I met people who were also getting treatment but they were travelling tremendous distances to be there,” says Stan. “Some people were coming four days a week, every week. It made me think how fortunate I am to be so close, while others have to travel and find accommodation which can be very difficult.”
Stan spent his entire career working with an electrical wholesale company, Dixon Electric. He started there in 1968. He became a partner in the business and helped grow the company into four stores located in Sudbury, Sault Ste. Marie, Timmins and North Bay. The company was later bought out by an international company out of France.
Now retired, Stan says the letter from NOSM resonated with him. “Something about it caught my eye. I’ve never made a donation like this before and the medical school is the right place; we need to support health.”
“My wife and I both know that these medical students work very hard. It’s not cheap and they are spending so much on their education, living expenses, travel and housing,” says Stan. “It’s important just to be able to help someone who is going to help others.”
“We hope that others will see that we’ve given and think ‘I can do the same thing’,” says Judy. “We want to encourage more medical students to come and stay in the North.”
If you are interested in learning more about the School, making a donation, or legacy giving and naming opportunities, please contact Rahim Dharamsi, NOSM Manager, Advancement, at 705-562-7774 or by email to email@example.com. You can also visit nosm.ca/donate for more information.