Foundation Cancer Institute Construction

Gift Updates

Philanthropy is more than just something you do. It is part of who you are. That’s what makes philanthropy so powerful and extraordinary, even life-changing. Philanthropy does not simply provide the bricks and mortar, machinery and lights. It turns generosity into action. Action, ignited by passion, transforms a shared vision into reality and creates a lasting legacy.

Your gift is more than a donation. You are part of a legacy dedicated to transforming, healing and saving as many lives as we can. More than a partnership, you are family — and our legacies are intertwined. As one OSF family, what we do, you do too. For that, we are immensely grateful.

Thank you for saying “yes” to this life-affirming Mission, to extraordinary philanthropy and to knowing that as family, we always will be here for one another.

A Significant Gift to OSF HealthCare Cancer Institute Fuels a Passion and Ignites Hope

The OSF HealthCare is delighted to announce a remarkable and heartfelt contribution to the OSF HealthCare Cancer Institute, a beacon of hope in the fight against cancer. Dave and Nancy Golwitzer and their family have generously made a significant gift to advance the Mission of the OSF Cancer Institute. Dave’s business roots as president of Illico, Inc., are solidly grounded in Central Illinois and his passion extends to improving the lives of others. His journey from entrepreneurship to philanthropy exemplifies the power of dedication and compassion.

Dave's connection to the OSF Cancer Institute traces back to a pivotal moment during a recent tour. The experience left an indelible mark on Dave, as he personally witnessed the OSF commitment to excellence compassionate care. The OSF Vision resonated deeply with him, prompting an immediate and unwavering commitment to support its crucial Mission. He immediately saw the impact the OSF Cancer Institute would have on the entire Central Illinois community and the Midwest as a whole. In his commitment to the OSF Cancer Institute he stated, “After taking a recent tour of the OSF Cancer Institute … I recognized an opportunity to participate in bringing into existence a facility that will encompass world class treatments for life changing medical issues here in our own back yard.”

Notably, Dave's engagement goes beyond a financial contribution; it is a testament to a lifetime of hard work and dedication. Having served on the board of The Woods Foundation, a charitable foundation located in Logan County, Illinois, for two decades, Dave recognized a harmonious alignment between the OSF Vision and the core values of The Woods Foundation. 

In addition to Dave’s personal commitment, following a tour of the OSF Cancer Institute with fellow members of The Woods Foundation board, the board decided to make a $1 million commitment to help further the locally based innovative research, patient-centered care and transformative initiatives being undertaken at the OSF Cancer Institute.  

The unwavering support by Dave and The Woods Foundation further underscores the belief that the OSF Cancer Institute is not merely an institution, but a catalyst for positive change and healing.

This generous gift from Dave and Nancy Golwitzer and family offers hope to cancer patients and their families and empowers the OSF Cancer Institute to continue its groundbreaking work. We express our deepest gratitude to Mr. Golwitzer for his visionary leadership, compassion and commitment to making a lasting impact on the fight against cancer.

Thanks to individuals like Dave Golwitzer who inspire us with their generosity and dedication, together, we stride forward in the pursuit of a future where cancer is conquered. 

The Woods Foundation $1M Gift

In the philanthropic realm, fate recently played a pivotal role in a transformative act of generosity: a $1 million gift to the OSF HealthCare Cancer Institute.  The donation emerged from a chance encounter and the visionary commitment of The Woods Foundation to address a crucial need.  During a tour of the Cancer Institute, three members of The Woods Foundation Board of Directors, Bill Bates, Chris Golwitzer and David Golwitzer, were deeply moved by the potential impact on cancer patients.  Inspired, they presented their idea to contribute to the energy and vision driving the Cancer Institute to the fourth Director of The Woods Foundation, Blinn Bates.

Despite The Woods Foundation's primary focus on philanthropic endeavors, with an emphasis on Logan County, Illinois, all four Directors recognized the broader significance of the Cancer Institute's work, serving virtually every hospital within the OSF HealthCare Ministry and benefiting people throughout Illinois, neighboring states and beyond.  Hearing and seeing what will be accomplished at the Cancer Institute, further fueled their passion to be part of the OSF HealthCare mission to cure cancer.

Motivated by a sense of purpose, The Woods Foundation Directors committed to supporting the Cancer Institute, aiming not only for a financial contribution but also to catalyze positive change in cancer research and treatment.  This visionary commitment culminated in a remarkable $1 million gift, symbolizing a shared dedication to a future where the impact of cancer is reduced, and advancements in treatment and care are more accessible.

This inspiring story underscores the unpredictable yet powerful nature of philanthropy, illustrating the potential for positive change when individuals unite with a shared vision. The $1 million donation serves as a beacon of hope for those affected by cancer, emphasizing that chance encounters and visionary commitments can shape a brighter future.  The Directors of The Woods Foundation firmly believe that the OSF Cancer Institute will help citizens in Logan County as well as all Central Illinois and beyond.  The grant from The Woods Foundation is made possible through the generosity of Robert J. Woods and Joan Jarrett Woods through the creation by them of The Woods Foundation.

Foundation Cancer Institute Campaign Banner
CEFCU Names OSF HealthCare Cancer Institute Teaching Kitchen

Commitment to our community and its state-of-the-art healthcare led CEFCU, a Peoria-based nonprofit credit union, to make a $1million gift to support the OSF HealthCare Cancer Institute. The gift names the high-tech Teaching Kitchen currently under construction within the 180,000-square-foot institute.


According to CEFCU President/CEO Matt Mamer, the community-minded gift had been a topic of discussion for several years. He recalls former CEFCU president Mark Spenny originally brought the idea of supporting the cancer institute to the credit union’s board of directors after hearing about it at an OSF board meeting.

“CEFCU members and our entire community benefit from world-class cancer care, and community support is one of CEFCU’s three pillars, along with members and our employees. The positive economic impact of bringing new, high-paying jobs generated by the cancer institute will also benefit members. Helping educate our community about cancer risks and prevention through nutrition is a need we certainly support.”

Matt added the credit union continuously seeks new initiatives and ways to support community initiatives that mean the most to their members.

“It’s important to us as a credit union to invest in the communities where members live and work and to support projects that will benefit them,” he noted.

The topflight CEFCU Teaching Kitchen will offer a healthy lifestyle educational environment by focusing on prevention and wellness efforts to lower the risk for cancer and cancer recurrence. Patients and families affected by cancer will also benefit from classes that will help them learn how to prepare foods that address specialized needs while going through cancer treatment, including extra calories, protein-focus, swallowing difficulties and taste and smell changes. Prevention of other diseases and chronic health conditions will also be addressed, with advanced IT technology offering remote access to facilitate live-streamed classes.

“Healthy eating is at the center of our very well-being,” said Sister Judith Ann, O.S.F., Chairperson of the Boards, OSF HealthCare. “Our Sisters and our OSF community so deeply appreciate the giving spirit of CEFCU’s leadership and their generous support of the cancer institute. The positive impact the teaching kitchen will have in supporting both cancer care and cancer prevention is beyond measure and core to our Sisters’ Mission of serving others with the greatest care and love.”

Foundation CEFCU Sean ScrantonSean Scranton, Chairman of the CEFCU Board of Directors, said, “Naming the institute’s teaching kitchen is right in our strike zone. At some point, most of us have known someone who has been affected by cancer. The CEFCU Teaching Kitchen will help people learn how to eat more nutritiously throughout and after treatment, as well as addressing prevention, which is something we can all benefit from. CEFCU supports OSF’s efforts to keep our community healthy and ease the burden of cancer.”

Recalling when he was employed with OSF a number of years ago, Sean remembers Sister Judith Ann saying, “You may not be at OSF your entire career, but you will always take a piece of our Sisters’ Mission with you.”
“Of course,” he added, “Sister was right.”

To learn how you can share this vision and support the OSF HealthCare Cancer Institute, please contact the OSF HealthCare Foundation.

Foundation Bob Gilmore
The Gilmore Foundation – $1M Gift

The Gilmore Foundation continues to reflect Bob Gilmore’s generous spirit with a $1M gift to support the new Cancer Institute and expansion of OSF’s nurse navigation program for patients and families. The gift also included a matching component that inspired additional $1M gifts.

OSF HealthCare Foundation Receives Major Donation in Support of the OSF HealthCare Cancer Institute

OSF HealthCare Saint Anthony Medical Center has received one of the largest donations ever given from a living individual in the organization’s history.

John M. Pepe, a philanthropist and industrialist, has made the generous gift in memory of his late son, John M. Pepe, Jr., who died in 1963 from childhood leukemia at the age of 1. The gift will be used to fund an endowed chair of pediatric oncology named after his son, in support of the OSF HealthCare Cancer Institute campaign, the largest philanthropic campaign in the 145 year history of OSF HealthCare.

Words cannot begin to describe the gratitude we hold for the Pepe family in our hearts. For years, they have been right by our side sharing in our commitment to serve persons with the greatest care and love. In 2015, a gift from Pepe was used to fund the OSF HealthCare Saint Anthony Medical Center’s newly expanded cancer center renamed the Patricia D. Pepe Center for Cancer Care, in loving memory of Pepe’s wife, Patricia, who died from cancer earlier that year.

The Pepe family also donated the Garden of Hope, which is located outside of the cancer center and the St. Francis Garden near the front entrance of the hospital in Rockford, Ill.

“I’ve been fortunate to have achieved success in my career, which has afforded me the opportunity to help others,” says Pepe. “To me, this recent gift is a way to bring my late wife and son together again. Pat and I were young at the time when our first child was born and ultimately passed away. My family has always enjoyed a special relationship with OSF Saint Anthony and the staff has treated my family wonderfully, as they have with so many other families. I’m proud to say that I’m still close with many of the Mission Partners and people I served on boards with over the many years.”

“John and his family have been tremendous supporters of OSF HealthCare for a long time,” said Ryan Duvall, Strategic Philanthropy Officer for the OSF HealthCare Foundation. “The Pepe’s generosity, especially when it comes to helping people fighting cancer, is unwavering. The generosity of their gift will impact patients for years to come.”

Psalm 9:9
The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.