A gift that ensures best-in-class medical leadership for generations

February 28, 2022
The Foundation
4 min read


Beth Kalenak has unique insight into how philanthropy can enhance both patient care and a physician's experience. She witnessed this firsthand as the spouse of a physician, first sparking her interest in healthcare philanthropy.

When Beth received Mount Nittany Health Foundation's request to donate to the Dr. Wayne S. Sebastianelli Leadership Fund, she knew she wanted to make a gift. The Mount Nittany Medical Center Medical Staff established this fund in honor of Dr. Sebastianelli's retirement as Chief of Staff after 16 years of service. "I had a meeting with the Mount Nittany Health Foundation scheduled on the day I received the appeal, shares Beth, "so I knew it was a sign from Alex."

The Sebastianelli Leadership Fund will enable physicians and advanced practice clinicians to become better leaders, supporting clinical innovation and advancements in care. 

Beth recalls that during the late 1980s, Dr. Sebastianelli was an orthopedic fellow under her husband's tutelage. The two men had a special bond. "I knew donating to the Leadership Fund would make a meaningful difference not only in memory of Alex but also in honor of the man who took his place as a physician leader in our community," shares Beth.

Dr. Sebastianelli recalls Dr. Kalenak fondly as a teacher, a mentor, and a friend. "Beth's donation means a lot to me," says Dr. Sebastianelli. "The gift will allow physicians and advanced practitioners at Mount Nittany Health to develop their leadership skills to enhance patient care. This is a fitting tribute to Dr. Kalenak – he was an inspiring leader himself."

Mount Nittany Health Foundation strives to connect the generosity of donors with the mission of Mount Nittany Health - healthier people, stronger community. In Beth's case, we were able to match her gift to a program that directly impacts physicians with her desire to pay tribute to her late husband. 

"We cannot thank Beth enough for this inspiring gift in honor of Dr. Sebastianelli and in memory of her late husband and beloved orthopedic physician, Dr. Alexander Kalenak," shares Simon Corby, executive director, Mount Nittany Health Foundation

Every donor dollar is put to work right here in the communities where you live and work, underpinning best-in-class care for those served by Mount Nittany Health. To learn more about how gifts of all sizes can make a difference and advance healthcare in the lives of your friends and family, visit foundation.mountnittany.org.

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