2018 Achievements

An invitation to our community to shape #TheNext30. Our "Check the Box" campaign. The gift of sight. And reaching new heights for donation. It was another year that our work resulted in notable achievements.

The LifeSource website on a laptop
2018 Achievement

Honoring the Past, Looking to the Future

A generation after our founding in 1989, we’re tirelessly working toward the same mission of saving lives and offering hope and healing through excellence in organ, eye and tissue donation. While our steadfast focus on the mission has remained the same, our team has grown, our programs have expanded and our technology has sharpenedimpacting more lives than ever before.

In 2018, we honored the past and began to set our sights on the future with #TheNext30an invitation to our community to join us in helping to create the next generation of donation. #TheNext30 will showcase innovations in the field of donation and transplantation, the people who are making them possible and encourage everyone to spread the lifesaving message of donation and donor registration.

LifeSource "Check the Box" campaign image
2018 Achievement

Check the Box Campaign

We set out to spread the word not only about the importance of registering as a donorbut that anyone can register as a donor and save lives. Our 2018 ad campaign, Check the Box, furthered that message with authentic stories of real-life recipients and registered donors (70% of participants have been personally impacted by donation).

The campaign and its video centerpiece struck a chord with viewers in Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and more broadly online, garnering over 2.8 million views on YouTube. The campaign’s central message and the fact that it has resonated with so many both serve as proof that even with our diverse experiences, we are all united by our humanity and the cherished gift of life. We also won a bronze award in the Public Service Television Commercial category at AdFed’s 2019 The Show!

2018 Achievement

Giving the Gift of Sight

In May of 2018, we officially launched an eye recovery program to better serve our donation partners, donors and their families. As a result, we’re able to act as a single point of service for organ, eye and tissue donation. And that means more coordinated, compassionate care for our communities.

We’re proud to already be working with 16 Minnesota hospitals, 27 North Dakota hospitals, and one Medical Examiner in Minnesota to provide this service for their patients and families.

An individual checking the donor box on a form
2018 Achievement

Reaching New Heights

Fresh off of setting new records for donation and registration in 2017, June of 2018 marked the highest month for donation in our nearly three-decade history. We worked with 25 grieving families to steward the gifts of 77 organ transplants, as well as 19 eye donors and 84 tissue donors who helped hundreds more.

This lifesaving work couldn’t be accomplished without the generosity and support of our community, and we’re incredibly grateful.

LifeSource clinic in Rochester
2018 Achievement

Moving Our Rochester Clinic

We’ve had a clinic in Rochester, Minnesota for many years, but it was tucked away in a larger office building. This fall, we moved into a new space—a storefront at 3720 Nottingham Dr. NW that gives us much greater visibility to the Rochester community.

An open house on October 24 inaugurated the space where our hospital liaison, donation coordinators, and surgical recovery coordinators will continue our work with Mayo Clinic, a key partner our donation efforts.

Craig Ayers

On a flight home from Chicago, attorney Craig Ayers collapsed...

Heart transplant recipient Craig Ayers being examined in 1984 before his transplant

Craig saw a cardiologist and was diagnosed—at age 35—with idiopathic cardiomyopathy, a disease that causes the chambers of the heart to enlarge and decreases muscle contractions. He became the University of Minnesota’s heart transplant number 30 on February 25, 1984—back when heart transplants were considered a highly experimental procedure and had only about a 50% success rate.

He was fortunate and the transplant gave him a second chance. In addition to partnering with three other heart transplant recipients to form The Second Chance for Life Foundation in 1988, Craig served on the LifeSource board of directors, our first non-physician board president who increased the voice of the patient in our work. He also continued his legal practice and raised a son and daughter. More on Craig’s story in this LifeSource video.

Inset photo by Mark Peterson/City Pages

2018 Achievement

Collaborating with EffectiveArts

We engaged in interactive drama simulations with EffectiveArts, an organization that trains on high-intensity situations. This learning experience put our donor family outreach teams in simulated emotional, high-stakes interactions that help prepare them for the intensity and unpredictability of real-world situations.

In 2019, we will continue our engagement with EffectiveArts and expand to include the team in our Donor Services Center, the hub of our clinical work.

ISODP 2019 conference image
2018 Achievement

Susan Gunderson Named ISODP President

LifeSource CEO Susan Gunderson was named to a two-year term as President of the International Society for Organ Donation and Procurement (ISODP). In her role, she is also co-chair of the 15th ISODP 2019 conference to be held in Dubai, UAE this coming November.

This leadership opportunity puts Susan and LifeSource in front of the international community, where she can share her expertise, best practices, and passion with leaders in organ, eye and tissue donation from around the globe. We warmly congratulate her on this honor and recognition!


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