Santa Rosa resident Judy Badgley, president of a small family foundation in memory of her father, Don Yoder, vividly remembers the passion her father had about giving back to the community.
“Dad worked hard to build his business and believed that, when you’re successful, it’s your duty to give back,” Judy says. “My sister and I were raised with the same value system. It takes a village and we all have to pull together to prop each other up through philanthropy or volunteerism.”
Judy, a cancer survivor, started making unsolicited gifts from her family foundation to the Sutter Cancer Support programs several years ago. The foundation faithfully gives every year.
“I was very fortunate because we caught the cancer early and were able to treat it with a surgical lumpectomy and radiation,” Judy recalls. “It was a very frightening experience, though, because I didn’t know anyone locally who had had breast cancer and I didn’t know where to turn.”
She ultimately located and reached out to a Sutter nurse navigator who referred her to Sutter Cancer Support services and additional resources.
“I was very happy with the Sutter services I received, and especially pleased to learn they were offered free of charge to anyone in the community,” Judy says. “I was a Sutter member, but I was glad to know that all community members could use the services to help them through their difficult cancer journeys. This motivated me to ask my family if we could make a regular contribution from our foundation.”
Judy is proud to continue her father’s legacy of giving back to and partnering with the community. Judy’s sister lives in Southern California and continues to support charities in that area as well.
“As my kids get older and settle into different communities, I expect that the outreach of our foundation will continue to grow,” Judy says. “I’ve always stressed the importance of giving back to my kids, just like my dad did with me. I tell them there’s always something we can do to help, either through financial contributions or donating time through volunteering.”