Kastler, herself, is definitely one of those people who have supported the hospital for the long haul. She will continue to serve Dixie Regional assisting Intermountain Southwest Region Vice President Terri Kane with special assignments and projects while making a gradual move toward full retirement. The transition was initiated in early 2013 with Kastler stepping down this week as next week a new leader will be formally named in her place. Kastler’s role as chief development officer has encompassed fund-raising accountability for the region’s three hospital foundations (Dixie Regional Medical Center, Valley View Medical Center, and Garfield Memorial Hospital).
“We are so grateful for Kerry’s dedication and service over the past nearly 30 years,” said Kane. “Under her leadership she grew Dixie Regional’s main fundraising event — the annual Jubilee of Trees — into the largest showcase of designer trees and holiday entertainment between Las Vegas and the Wasatch Front. Most recently this event raised an unprecedented $1 million to advance trauma care. I look forward to a continued association with Kerry in her new role. Her many achievements have helped to create the breadth of healthcare services in this end of the state that we enjoy today.”
Kastler began her career at Dixie as the volunteer secretary to the Foundation Board of Trustees in 1986 and became the hospital’s first paid foundation director in 1989. For several years she served a dual position as volunteer services/public relations director, and in 1999 she again accepted the position of foundation executive director. Over the past three decades she has collaborated with board members and community volunteers to initiate and fund such still successful philanthropic programs and initiatives as:
• Jubilee Homes – in both St. George and Cedar City – charitable lodging for patients and families of patients receiving critical care at Dixie Regional and Valley View Medical Centers
• Trees of Light and Life – the foundation of the hospital’s commemorative giving programs to provide tribute contributions in honor and memory of friends and loved ones; first tree atop 400 East Campus; second on southwest corner of River Road campus
• Hospital Thrift Store (formerly Repeat Performance) facilitates the recycle of clothing, housewares, furniture and more to benefit bargain hunters and low income families; proceeds benefit the hospital
• Mammogram 500 – program to fund 500 free mammograms for underserved at-risk women; program continues today serving hundreds of additional complimentary mammograms
• Jubilee of Trees fundraising event – increased revenue from humble beginnings of less than $50,000 to $1 million
• Rulan D. Woodbury Jubilee Classic Golf Tournaments – benefit Dixie Regional and Valley View Medical Centers
• Tribute Bench – commemorative giving
• $23 million – raised in partnership with community volunteer leaders. Kastler served in campaign leadership to raise more than $23 million for major hospital advancements named above and also including the new hospital campaign at Dixie, Valley View’s cancer center, Life Flight rotary wing air ambulance, the Dixie Regional Health & Performance Center, newborn intensive care and the advancement of trauma care services.
Kastler received her undergraduate degree at the University of Utah went on to complete graduate studies at Indiana University/Purdue University, Indianapolis (IUPUI) and earned a certified fund-raising executive (CFRE) professional designation in 2007. She was the first executive director/president of Dixie Regional Medical Center Foundation and the first chief development officer for the region. She has served as a member of faculty for the Association of Healthcare Philanthropy and has presented at several national and regional educational conferences. She currently serves on the board of the Southern Utah Non-Profit Legal Center and The Spectrum’s editorial board.
Kastler’s broader community involvement includes service as chairman of the board for the St. George Area Chamber of Commerce and an Emeritus Sunshiner (the chamber’s ambassador group). She chaired the Dixie Tub Thumpers Toastmaster’s Club, served as Chairman of the St. George Planning Commission and as vice-chair of the Washington County Planning Commission. As a past member of the Spectrum’s “Writer’s Group” she authored more than 100 opinion columns.