Healthcare Foundation Receives $2 Million Gift from Gary and Barbara Rodkin in Support of the Cornell Behavioral Health Pavilion at SMH


MAY 24, 2022

Sarasota Memorial Healthcare Foundation announced today that Barbara and Gary Rodkin have made a $2 million gift in support of the Cornell Behavioral Health Pavilion at Sarasota Memorial.

The Rodkins’ $2 million donation will be used specifically to support geriatric services at the Cornell Pavilion, which is currently under construction on Sarasota Memorial’s Sarasota Campus. The new $71 million pavilion is slated to open in 2023 replacing Sarasota Memorial’s Bayside Center for Behavioral Health with a modern facility that enhances, expands and centralizes care for people affected by mental and behavioral health challenges.

The Rodkin’s interest in geriatric services at the pavilion arose from personal experience. “In his 90s, my father had mental and physical issues, and it was extremely difficult to connect the dots and get the right people to get us the help that was needed,” says Gary. “There was no coordinated care and it really pointed out how much improvement the whole geriatric system needed.”

Barbara, who currently sits on the Healthcare Foundation board, gained interest in supporting the project after learning that the new facility would have a specific geriatric inpatient unit with 16 private rooms and services designed specifically for geriatric patients.  “We do a lot of research before we offer our support to any project and this one meets the gold standard,” she says.

“The Healthcare Foundation was very much in tune with our thought process and introduced us to the incredibly accomplished professionals who would be leading the program. They made it very easy for us to say yes,” adds Gary.

“Gary and Barbara have been generous supporters of the Healthcare Foundation for some time,” says Healthcare Foundation President Mason Ayres. “They are fully engaged in the projects they support at the onset, and beyond, to ensure they succeed and continue to make an impact. We are truly grateful.”

In addition to their support of the Cornell Pavilion, the Rodkins are long-term supporters of the Community Specialty Clinic at Sarasota Memorial.  The Clinic provides specialty medical care and referral services to local residents who are uninsured or underinsured.

“We feel very fortunate and blessed. We didn’t grow up with a lot but we’ve done well and want to give back,” says Gary.  “Everybody should have an opportunity to live a good life. I encourage others who can, to make an impact, and watch it grow.”

Community support will continue to make a difference at the Cornell Pavilion. Learn more.

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