CHOC’s Children’s Champion Award Honoree
The First to Answer a Call
Sandy Segerstrom Daniels
Sandy Segerstrom Daniels is determined to make a difference. A managing partner of C. J. Segerstrom & Sons, which owns the South Coast Plaza shopping center in Southern California, Sandy has always given generously of her time and money to an array of children's organizations. Her passion led to the creation in 2002 of Festival of Children®. A month-long event held every September at South Coast Plaza, the Festival showcases more than 70 children’s charities. Sandy also founded the Festival of Children Foundation, a nonprofit organization that brings together and coordinates the efforts of individuals, companies and other charitable organizations dedicated to improving young lives.
Sandy’s advocacy for children’s health and well-being drew her to CHOC Children’s. Since 2001, she’s co-chaired and participated in the CHOC Follies, an original musical production featuring community leaders who have raised more than $7 million for CHOC since the performance hit the stage 18 years ago. Sandy has also been a strong supporter of the CHOC Cherishes Children Gala since 2011 - 2015.
When CHOC embarked on an ambitious philanthropic effort to make the hospital one of the safest, most advanced children’s hospitals in the world, Sandy made a lead gift and served as honorary chair of the “Change CHOC Change the World” campaign. Launched in 2007, the campaign surpassed its goal of raising $125 million. The signature funding priority of the campaign, The Bill Holmes Tower, opened in spring 2013.
Currently, Sandy is lending her generous support to a transformational initiative to ensure children, adolescents and young adults with mental illness get the health care services and support they currently lack in Orange County. In May 2015, she announced a $5 million donation to help establish CHOC Children’s Mental Inpatient Center, which will provide a safe, nurturing place for children ages 3 to 18 to receive care for mental health conditions. The Center will also provide specialty programming for children younger than 12. Sandy’s gift serves as the cornerstone of a broader fundraising campaign by CHOC to raise $11 million for inpatient capital and startup costs, and $16 million to endow the program.
“Sandy’s inspiring and generous gift will improve the lives of children battling mental illness and their families by providing the services and support they need,” said CHOC President and CEO Kimberly Chavalas Cripe.
While Sandy shies away from the spotlight—with the exception of taking the stage for CHOC Follies—she works tirelessly to shed light on causes supporting children. Her contributions have earned her numerous awards, including the Children’s Friend Award by Childhelp USA, Orange County Girl Scout Council Women of Distinction Award, Spirit of Volunteerism Giving is Living Award, and Children’s Visionary Award by the Child Guidance Center. She’s also been honored by the Orange County Department of Education, and Orange County Child Abuse Prevention Center.