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Longtime Hospital Supporters Donate to Cancer Center

Jim and Shirley Crafton are both longtime supporters of Pardee Hospital. Both have either worked or volunteered their time at Pardee over the years and see their support for the Cancer Center as simply the right thing to do.

Shirley has been a volunteer with Pardee since 2000, where her mother Ruth Tillman volunteered before her. They shared their sewing skills by volunteering their time in “Workshop 2”. It is there that Shirley makes clowns and other items that are sold in the hospital gift shop. Shirley also volunteers in the Garden Café as her schedule permits.

Jim worked for Pardee as an interim Director of Engineering for two years, filling in when the hospital needed him. His work and Shirley’s time as a volunteer instilled in them that Pardee is a good organization and their involvement was natural.

Like so many, Jim also has a personal interest in the Cancer Center: he is a two-time cancer survivor, and has a family history of cancer. “Cancer has affected my family in numerous ways. My mother had breast cancer twice; my brother died from cancer; and in 2006, I was diagnosed with kidney cancer. Within eight years of that diagnosis, I received my second diagnosis of prostate cancer. Even though my kidney was removed at another facility, Pardee detected my first cancer. Pardee also treated me for my second diagnosis with radiation and hormone treatment.”

When asked why they chose to donate to the Cancer Center at Pardee, Jim and Shirley noted their appreciation for the work that Pardee Hospital does. “I believe in Pardee Hospital,” said Jim. “An investment in the Cancer Center and what it can do for people will be significant for our community.”

Shirley adds that all of us want the hospital and the Cancer Center to be the best it can be if we need to go for care. Supporting it financially is “part of giving back to your community and making the community what it is.”

Andrew Schmidt

Andrew Schmidt joined Pardee Hospital Foundation in November 2023 as a Donor Engagement Officer. Andrew began his career in fundraising at his alma mater, Sewanee: The University of the South, as an assistant director in charge of reunions and volunteers, working on milestone giving campaigns as well as alumni engagement and stewardship events. Andrew holds a BA in Philosophy from Sewanee and recently earned a MA in Applied Arts & Sciences from the Liberal and Interdisciplinary Studies program at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Andrew previously served the Henderson Country community as an Advancement Analyst at nearby Kanuga Conference Center, where he was responsible for donor database administration, prospect research, and raising funds in support of a $15M capital campaign centered on a comprehensive renovation of the then-47-year-old Kanuga Lake Inn. Andrew looks forward to helping advance the mission of UNC Health and Pardee Hospital Foundation across the Western North Carolina region, and particularly in Transylvania County. When he’s not out and about visiting with donors, you can usually find Andrew scampering around DuPont and Pisgah with his wife, Sara and preschool-age son, Arthur.