“When I married Don, I knew I was not only marrying into his family, I was also marrying into City of Hope as the family charity,” laughs Lois Hoffman. “Of course, it was easy for me to adopt City of Hope because I believed in it, too.”
Don and Lois are the second generation of the Hoffman family to be passionate about City of Hope. Don’s father became involved through his work in the garment industry. A successful businessman, he was also “the kind of guy who wanted to help,” explains Don.
“I remember he sold dinner tickets to raise money for City of Hope,” Don recalls. My dad even recruited Lois and me, while we were dating, to volunteer stuffing envelopes for City of Hope one year.”
After Lois and Don Hoffman were married, Don became more involved with City of Hope. He has been a member of the medical center board since 2005. He is also a member of the Patient and Family Advisory Council, which helps improve the experience of patients and their families throughout the institution, and the Ambassador Leadership Council, a group focused on City of Hope’s chapters.
Don’s father and mother died within five years of each other — his father of lung cancer and his mother of a brain tumor — but he is quick to note that he is “not donating because of these connections.” His support for City of Hope started many years before, and has continued through his self-diagnosis of breast cancer. Don’s treatment at City of Hope included a radical mastectomy. “Now I’m both a patient and a supporter,” says Don.
The Hoffmans’ involvement now spans four generations. Lois and Don’s granddaughter’s work as a research associate at City of Hope has inspired her to become a nurse. Lois and Don are “enormously proud” of their granddaughter.
But even with all they have accomplished on behalf of City of Hope, the Hoffmans want to do more. “We’re very fortunate and wanted to give back,” Don says. “That’s why we’ve established three gift annuities with City of Hope. It’s a way of investing in the future of City of Hope and getting something back.”
Lois adds, “We give because it’s a great charity — not just because it’s helped our family. You don’t have to benefit directly to see the value in City of Hope’s work.”