Cedars-Sinai Receives Record Gift

Cedars-Sinai Receives Record Gift
The Susanne and Ervin Bard Pavilion at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.

Cedars-Sinai Medical Center has received a $140 million gift — the largest in the hospital’s 121-year history — from the estate of longtime supporters Susanne and Ervin Bard. 

The gift, which was announced last week, will propel clinical and research innovation in the medical campus’ newest building, a 450,000-square-foot tower that opened in 2013 and has until now been named the Advanced Health Sciences Pavilion. It houses the Smidt Heart Institute and the Samuel Oschin Cancer Center, among other research and treatment facilities. 

As a result of the gift, the building has been renamed the Susanne and Ervin Bard Pavilion.

The late Susanne and Ervin Bard were both born in Hungary; their respective families emigrated to the United States after World War II. They met and married in New York and moved to Los Angeles in the 1950s. Ervin Bard first sold insurance policies and then ventured into property investing. As his investments grew, the couple began to donate to and volunteer at the new Cedars-Sinai Medical Center campus. They made several donations to Cedars over the years. After Ervin Bard died in 2006, Susanne Ervin spent more time volunteering in several departments at the medical center. She died last year.

“The generosity exhibited by the Bards was extraordinary throughout their lifetimes and now as part of their legacy,” Thomas Priselac, chief executive of Cedars-Sinai, said in the announcement. “This amazing gift has cleared new pathways to continue the pioneering research and thoughtful care that Cedars-Sinai is dedicated to delivering.”

Prior to the Bard estate’s donation, the single largest gift in Cedars-Sinai history came in December 2021 when Beverly Hills philanthropist and former Cedars-Sinai Health System board chair Vera Guerin donated $100 million from the Shapell-Guerin Family Foundation to create a 26-bed children’s care facility at Cedars-Sinai’s main Beverly Grove campus. That facility, which also has facilities for medical research and training, opened last summer.

The Bard estate’s gift is more broadly focused. According to the announcement, the gift will allow Cedars-Sinai to expand its mission to provide health care, advance biomedical discovery and educate future medical professionals, both in the Los Angeles area and throughout the world.

Group: From left, Rabbi Jason Weiner, James Lippman, James Friedberg, Thomas Priselac, and Arthur Ochoa cut the ribbon at the Susanne and Ervin Bard Pavilion.

“The Bards have and will continue to touch the lives of so many of our patients through their generosity,” said chief advancement officer Arthur Ochoa. “Cedars-Sinai is humbled and eternally grateful for this historic gift that allows us to allocate funds where needed most in the advancement of medical science and care.”

This is the second major gift to Cedars in the space of two weeks. The other gift was a $30 million donation made by the Chuck Lorre Family Foundation to establish a medical school program to train current Cedars physicians and medical staff, as well as prospective medical professionals, in several specialties that are understaffed. (For more on this gift, see page 11.)

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