Grande Ronde Hospital Foundation’s Annual Gala Breaks Fundraising Record

LA GRANDE – (Release from the Grande Ronde Hospital Foundation) The Grande Ronde Hospital Foundation is pleased to announce the results of its Then and Now Gala, sponsored by US Bank. The sold-out event took place Saturday, April 6, at Eastern Oregon University’s Loso Hall and raised more than $708,000 including a $674,200 paddle raise appeal. All proceeds go towards the Healthier Together Campaign, which is helping to expand capacity and access at Grande Ronde Hospital and Clinics (GRH).  

The “Then and Now” theme helped the Foundation celebrate its 55th anniversary and talk about the impact the Foundation has had over the years. The Foundation helps to ensure GRH has patient care equipment, projects and education for patients and training for staff. The Foundation also featured updates on the Healthier Together Campaign, which includes construction of the new expansion on the GRH campus, housing a new surgical services department. Once that project is complete, the campaign will support other projects such as an expansion and remodel of the Regional Medical Clinic in La Grande. 

Foundation Manager Patrick Flynn said that this year’s goal was to raise more funds than the previous year’s event at the Union County Fairgrounds. This year’s event nearly tripled last year’s total. 

“Last year we raised $240,000, which was great to be a part of, but I wasn’t ready for what we did this year,” Flynn said. “This year’s event raised over $708,000 that night; it was amazing!”  

Flynn explained that most of that came from a paddle raise appeal at the end of the evening, which produced $674,200. All proceeds from the event will go towards the Healthier Together campaign, which is now at $6.6 million of its $7.5 million goal. Flynn credits the community’s generosity. 

“It’s been great to have the opportunity to work with both our new and established donors, and it shows that people are willing to engage with us to make sure access to the best health care remains strong and independent in our rural communities.”

The evening featured dinner catered by Merlyn’s Catering, and entertainment from Union County based vocal performers who have come up through the Eastern Oregon University Music Department performing vocal pieces with ties to the larger theme of “Then and Now”.  

In addition to the funds raised, the Foundation also awarded thirteen challenge coins as a way to recognize contributions to the Foundation’s mission whether through financial or other efforts. Flynn attributes this program to a desire to recognize those who have gone above-and-beyond in a meaningful way. “It would be easy to give them a plaque or table award and go on their way, but we want to build a community, and something they can take with them, to be recognized wherever they go.” Co-emcee of the Foundation’s gala, Bob Kavanaugh referred to the challenge coin recipients as “Warriors for the GRH Foundation.” 

The Healthier Together campaign was launched in 2023 to catalyze Grande Ronde Hospital’s future capacity and facility expansions, starting with the Facilities Expansion Project, currently under construction, The new 96,000 square-foot space will house new and expanded 23,000 square foot surgical services floor, as well as other departments and room for future growth. For more information on the Healthier Together Campaign, go to

The Grande Ronde Hospital Foundation has been fundraising for patient care equipment at Grande Ronde Hospital since 1969 and has raised more than 5.5 million dollars. For questions about their fundraising projects or to make a donation, call 541-963-1431 or go to