Samaritan recently recognized two prominent community leaders for their outstanding support. Roy Fazio and Terriann Procida received Circle of Excellence Awards at our annual Celebration of Life gala in February.
“Roy and Terriann have each advanced hospice and palliative care through their personal and corporate commitments,” says Samaritan President/CEO Mary Ann Boccolini. “We are deeply grateful for all they have done and continue to do.”
Roy Fazio: Founding Volunteer
Fazio, partner and executive vice president of The Protocall Group, helped found Samaritan with a small group of volunteers in the early 1980s. He’s continued his strong support for more than 30 years as a board member, golf tournament co-chair and advocate. (Through the golf outing alone, Fazio has helped raise more than $1 million for unreimbursed services, such as care for people without insurance, grief counseling, and the comfort of massage and music therapies.)
Fazio became aware of the need for hospice through his company, which includes a home-care agency. “We had several patients who were at the end stages of life,” he recalls. “It just made sense to have some kind of care in our community to make them feel comfortable.”
The problem: at the time, hospice care was not reimbursed by Medicare or private insurance, and many families couldn’t afford it. So Fazio joined several compassionate businesspeople and healthcare professionals to address the issue.
“We pushed for legislation for some reimbursement for hospice,” says Fazio. In 1982, President Reagan signed a federal law establishing Medicare funding for these services.”
Fazio and his collaborators proceeded to found Samaritan as a not-f0r-profit organization, completely separate from any of their own companies. “It was something totally new,” he says, of the first hospice to serve southern New Jersey.
The busy executive has maintained his commitment to Samaritan ever since, receiving the Community Leader of the Year award in 2003 from the New Jersey Hospice and Palliative Care Organization. He routinely brings new supporters to Samaritan through his personal and professional networks.
“Samaritan is a fabulous organization,” says Fazio, citing “the passion of all the managers and employees to provide great care. They’re so positive, and I feel so proud of the organization.”
He also appreciates the “very dynamic board, which includes top executives from Lourdes, Virtua, Cooper, lawyers with Archer & Greiner and Parker McCay… They’re all great people to be around.”
Terriann Procida: Grateful Supporter
When Terriann Procida was asked by a friend to volunteer for Samaritan in 2009, the successful entrepreneur knew she was helping a good cause. Several years later — when Procida’s father received end-of-life care from Samaritan — she developed an even deeper appreciation for our important mission.
“Samaritan transforms a stressful time to a positive celebration of the person’s life and helps them find peace,” says Procida, founding partner of Innovative Benefit Planning LLC. “The work they do is amazing.”
Her family’s experience led Procida to a profound, heartfelt commitment to Samaritan — to help ensure that anyone can receive that same care and support, regardless of ability to pay.
After serving on our volunteer gala committee for two years, Procida stepped up to chair the group from 2010 to 2013 – helping raise almost $500,000 for Samaritan programs. This year she returned as a gala committee member, continuing to assist with the event-planning and fundraising.
In addition to her support of Samaritan, Procida has been board chair of Archway Programs since 2002, and is a board member of United Benefit Advisors. She has served as a grant reviewer for the Community Women’s Fund and has supported Hopeworks ’N Camden, Philadelphia Workforce Development Corporation, Planned Parenthood of Southern New Jersey, Twin Oaks Community Services, and Community Access Unlimited.
Samaritan has presented our Circle of Excellence Awards since 2003. The awards recognize supporters for their contributions to our field, while raising awareness of the need for these vital services. Past recipients include Michael H. Levy, Linda O’Brien, Clark Dingman, Maria Termini-Romano, and Peter W. Carmel, M.D.