Northwest Credit Unions Honor John Lauck’s Legacy of Leading Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals


John Lauck led Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals as President and CEO, where he helped raise billions of dollars for children seeking life-saving medical care.

John Lauck led Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals for nine years, where he put all his passion behind providing life-saving care for children. It was his belief that every child deserved the opportunity to lead a healthy, productive life.

Last week, Lauck passed away after a tragic bike accident. His legacy for leading Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals will continue long into the future. Under his leadership, 170 member hospitals have provided 32 million treatments to children each year across the United States and Canada.

His dedication was admired by everyone who knew him, including credit union professionals in the Northwest, where Credit Unions for Kids was founded – the credit union-based charity that raises funds for CMN Hospitals.

Since 1996, credit unions, chapters, leagues, and business partners from across the country have donated more than $185 million to Credit Unions for Kids, helping to provide life-saving care for children seeking treatment at CMN Hospitals.

Recently, Anthem reached out to Northwest credit union professionals who have played key roles in raising funds for Credit Unions for Kids and CMN Hospitals. They reflected on Lauck’s legacy and impact, and how he inspired them.

Kelly Schrader, President and CEO of Portland-based iQ Credit Union, said one of her favorite memories of Lauck happened on the golf course, during the Northwest Classic Golf Tournament, an annual fundraising golf tournament that raises funds for CMN Hospitals.

“John and I were in the same foursome at the Northwest Classic Golf Tournament last year, and as we headed off on the first hole he shared that he had come out a few days earlier to experience biking along the Oregon Coast. He said it was one of the most beautiful experiences he had ever had and that it had created an even stronger feeling of passion and intent for the children CMN Hospitals served,” Schrader recalled. “John said that he hoped all the children we collectively were supporting that day had the opportunity to experience first-hand the beauty and wonder of nature, as it was a true gift. His sincerity, emotion and true commitment really touched me again that day and I remember thinking how fortunate we were to have him leading CMN.”

Last year, the tournament – a collaboration between dozens of Northwest credit unions and partners – raised $1.5 million for CMN Hospitals.

Sarah Bang, former President and Chief Strategy Officer for CO-OP Financial Services, said Lauck understood and appreciated credit unions’ collaborative, “People Helping People” philosophy. Bang played a key role in forming the original initiative that inspired Credit Unions for Kids in 1991.

“John’s support of Credit Unions for Kids and the Credit Union Movement was steadfast. He understood the power of credit union cooperation locally and nationally and vigorously supported our unique, decentralized approach to fundraising,” she said. “Not everyone outside the Movement understands the Credit Union Difference. John did, and for that, I will always be grateful.”

Jim Morrell, President and CEO of Shelton, Washington-based Peninsula Credit Union, said Lauck’s dedication was inspiring for those in the Credit Union Movement.

“His work to improve children’s health was a motivating factor for so many of us to indefatigably pursue Credit Unions for Kids as the Credit Union industry’s charity of choice,” he said.

Last year, credit unions across the Northwest came together during the Credit Unions for Kids annual auction, where together, they raised more than $900,000. Year-round, credit unions throughout the region, and nationally, raise millions for CMN Hospitals.

Editor’s Note: Recently, CMN Hospitals honored Lauck’s legacy in an episode of its Untold Miracles podcast, where he touches on the organization’s work, in his own words. To hear it, listen online here.

Posted in CU4Kids, Leadership.