- The Washington Times - Tuesday, February 6, 2007

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) Around here, T. Denny Sanford is not known just for the billions of dollars he made in banking; he also is known for the millions he has donated.

When officials at Sioux Valley Hospitals & Health Systems told him of their dream to transform the facility into a major research institution for children’s health, he donated $400 million, and they promised to rename the institution after him: Sanford Health.

“I have been quoted as wanting to die broke,” Mr. Sanford, 71, said at the announcement Saturday in front of 1,800 employees and community leaders. Hospital President and Chief Executive Officer Kelby Krabbenhoft “is certainly doing the best job he can to make it happen.”

The hospital began in 1894 and has grown to become the largest employer in the region, with 12,000 employees, 340 physicians, 115 clinics and 24 hospitals.

The $400 million will go toward several projects that will bear Mr. Sanford’s name and expand the health care system beyond its current patient base in South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa and Nebraska. Mr. Sanford’s net worth is roughly $2.5 billion. He made his fortune as the owner of First Premier Bank and Premier Bankcard.

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