Credit Unions for Kids Wine Auction Raises Record $1.4 Million for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals

Annual Gala Raises More Than $1 Million for Fifth Consecutive Year, Totals Over $8.5 Million for CMN Hospitals in Fourteen Years

Dana Point, CA | March 26, 2019

Organizers of the fourteenth annual California and Nevada Credit Unions for Kids Wine Auction have announced that the gala event raised a record $1.4 million for the eleven Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals in California and Nevada. This is the fifth consecutive year that the event has raised over $1 million for these hospitals.

The California and Nevada Credit Unions for Kids Wine Auction is the largest single fundraising event for Credit Unions for Kids, having raised more than $8.5 million since 2006 for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. The sold-out event, which took place Friday, March 22nd at the Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel in Dana Point, California, had 500 attendees, and was supported by 67 credit unions, business partners and hospitals.

“Through the incredible efforts and generosity of our sponsors, donors, and volunteers, we’ve eclipsed $1 million in donations for a fifth straight year in support of the eleven Children’s Hospitals in California and Nevada,” said Nader Moghaddam, event chairman and CEO of Financial Partners Credit Union. “Actively supporting Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals is important to credit unions, and we are very pleased to be helping this great organization and the children they serve in our communities.”

The event’s theme “Casablanca,” set the backdrop for an evening that included fine food, dancing, and both silent and live auctions. Attendees had the opportunity to bid on more than 550 packages that included bottles of fine wine, travel getaways, and concerts.

The event’s very special guest was 11-year-old Jordin Jackson, a CMN Hospital patient at Children’s Hospital of Orange County (CHOC) in California. Sharing how CHOC has changed her life, Jordin’s charm and her amazing story of strength and courage inspired attendees. Since birth, Jordin has battled sickle cell disease, an inherited condition that afflicts approximately 100,000 people in the U.S., and can cause tremendous pain, chronic anemia, serious infections, and damage to organs.

Jordin Jackson

11 year old Jordin Jackson, CMN Hospital patient and special guest, addresses Wine Auction attendees

Jordin loves to educate, help raise awareness and comfort others who suffer with illnesses. Since the age of four she has been raising awareness and funds for the children’s hospital by serving as a CMN miracle kid. In 2016-2017 she was the CMN Champion for California, traveling to Washington DC and Florida, representing all of California children’s hospitals. In 2017 she served as the ambassador for the CHOC Walk presented by the Disneyland Resort. Through her continued efforts and dedication, Jordin has raised over $150k for CMN hospitals. Jordin’s mom, Karen Wilson, is an employee of Financial Partners Credit Union.

The Wine Auction’s vehicle raffle raised over $70,000 for CMN Hospitals, with the winner having the choice of a new car or new Harley Davidson motorcycle, each valued at $25,000, or $25,000 in cash. The raffle was
sponsored by CU Direct. The raffle’s winner, Korinn Dolkas from Mission Federal Credit Union, opted for the cash prize, and will be using the winnings for home improvements.

Pledges totaling $55,750 were made in support of a special performance by Blues Brothers, starring Darren Williams, president & CEO of Wescom Credit Union, and Bill Cheney, president & CEO of SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union, and produced by Nader Moghaddam and Tony Boutelle, president and CEO, CU Direct.

The lead Corporate Sponsors of this year’s event were CU Direct, the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues, CO-OP Financial Services, and CUNA Mutual Group. As a result of the efforts and contributions of each of these organizations, as well as the event’s other sponsors, 100% of the money raised will directly benefit the eleven Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals in California and Nevada.

The Credit Unions for Kids Wine Auction is directed by an Executive Committee, with the committee’s CEOs representing the benefitting hospital/s in their area:

  • Chairperson: Nader Moghaddam – Financial Partners CU (CHOC Children’s; Children’s Hospital Los Angeles)
  • Erin Mendez – Patelco CU (UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland)
  • Hank Barrett – Valley First CU (Valley Children’s Hospital)
  • Carrie Birkhofer – Bay FCU (Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System)
  • John Cassidy – Sierra Central CU (UC Davis Children’s Hospital)
  • Bill Cheney – SchoolsFirst FCU (CHOC Children’s; Children’s Hospital Los Angeles)
  • Eric Estes – Boulder Dam CU (Renown Children’s Hospital; St. Rose Dominican Hospitals)
  • Teresa Freeborn – Xceed Financial CU (Children’s Hospital Los Angeles)
  • Geri LaChance – SESLOC FCU (Cottage Children’s Medical Center)
  • Brett Martinez – Redwood CU (UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland)
  • Keith Sultemeier – Kinecta FCU (Children’s Hospital Los Angeles; CHOC Children’s)
  • Shruti Miyashiro – Orange County’s CU (CHOC Children’s)
  • Steve O’Connell – California CU (Rady Children’s Hospital San Diego; CHOC Children’s; Children’s Hospital Los Angeles)
  • Steve Renock – Kern Schools FCU (Lauren Small Children’s Center)
  • Debra Schwartz – Mission FCU (Rady Children’s Hospital San Diego)
  • Darren Williams – Wescom CU (Children’s Hospital Los Angeles; CHOC Childrens’)

The 2020 California and Nevada Credit Unions for Kids Wine Auction will take place on March 13, 2020 at the Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel, Dana Point, California.


Credit Unions for Kids is the brand under which America’s credit unions fundraise for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. The collaborative effort, which is driven by a “people helping people” philosophy, includes individual credit unions; local chapters; state leagues/associations; two national trade organizations; business partners and several trade publications.

The program was introduced nationally in 1996 and since that time the credit union movement has raised over $185 million for affiliated children’s hospitals. Annually, credit unions are the fifth largest “corporate” contributor to Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.

The credit union community has established a wonderful legacy at hospitals across the country, funding breakthrough research, numerous programs and services and construction of new facilities. Fundraising activities run the gamut from major events to online giving campaigns to paper balloon icon sales.

For more information on Credit Unions for Kids and Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, please contact Nick Coleman at 515-339-1723 or [email protected].

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