As a longtime hotel owner in Stony Brook, John Tsunis knows a thing or two about hospitality. So when Stony Brook Children’s Hospital opened the Tsunis Family Waiting Room last month in recognition of John and Laura Tsunis and their sustained support of the hospital – including more than $250,000 of donations to the building fund – it was almost too perfect.
“Our mission has always been to provide outstanding pediatric care to infants, children and young adults on Long Island, in a world-class facility right in our own backyard,” said Carolyn Milana, MD, chair of the Department of Pediatrics and physician-in-chief of Stony Brook Children’s.
“The Tsunis Family Waiting Room was designed with the comfort of patient families in mind, creating a restful and comforting space for families whose children are in the hospital for virtually any medical situation. It will contribute immeasurably to the well-being of our patients and their families.”
For the Tsunises, who are longtime donors to the University, the decision to establish the waiting room felt personal.
“Stony Brook Children’s Hospital has been a beacon of light for families across Long Island – including mine,” said John Tsunis, who also works as the executive vice president at Alma Bank. “The hospital is a security blanket for children who need care and a place of comfort for their families. Laura and I feel a deep commitment to supporting it.”
That deep commitment has not only played a vital role at Stony Brook Children’s but has been felt across the University, where their cumulative gifts total more than $400,000. In addition to serving as the founding chair of the Stony Brook Children’s Hospital Task Force and serving on the Stony Brook Children’s Advancement Council, the Tsunis Family Foundation has provided generous support to the College of Business, the Staller Center and the Athletics Department. In fact, their Seawolf pride runs so deep that the Holiday Inn Express Stony Brook, which John has owned since 1991, is located within minutes of the Stony Brook University campus, hosting visiting teams, faculty, healthcare professionals, prospective students and honored guests.
And if the Tsunis’s relationship weren’t enough of a family affair, their son Charlie was not only born at Stony Brook University Hospital but is currently enrolled as a first-year student, studying toward a degree in Applied Mathematics.
“The sustained and generous support of donors like John and Laura Tsunis is what allows us to meet our goals of setting the highest standards of excellence in care, research, education and innovation,” said Harold Paz, MD, executive vice president for health sciences at Stony Brook University. “Their friendship over the years has had a tremendous impact on our University and across our greater community.”