For the media

Sharp team members give time, talent and treasure

By The Health News Team | May 22, 2024
Jen Marsh, Tammytha Zantopoulos, Josh Barder and Leslie Rocha-Rodriguez of Sharp HealthCare

(L-R) Jen Marsh, Tammytha Zantopoulos, Josh Barder and Leslie Rocha-Rodriguez all donate generously through the employee giving program.

More than 1,000 Sharp employees donate to the Foundations of Sharp HealthCare each year through payroll deductions or the donation of paid-time-off hours.

From October 2022 through September 2023, employees raised over $1.1 million, donating to causes ranging from the ECMO unit at Sharp Memorial Hospital to scholarships and programs at the Terrence and Barbara Caster Institute for Nursing Excellence.

“Sharp gives so much to me, so I can give back,” says Jen Marsh, a senior specialist at Sharp Mary Birch Hospital for Women & Newborns. “And you can choose where your money goes.”

While employees can donate via payroll deductions year-round, paid-time-off donations occur during one of the Foundations of Sharp HealthCare’s two six-week campaigns. The first campaign began in late April and will go through early June. The second campaign begins in early July.

Several employees, including registered nurses, medical assistants, supervisors and executives, express how important giving back is to them.

Bringing out the best

Tammytha Zantopoulos, a patient access specialist with Sharp Rees-Stealy, has donated to wear the need is greatest at Sharp Mesa Vista for two years, supporting Sharp’s mental health initiatives.

Zantopoulos says she is constantly inspired by all the people she works with, from her doctors to her manager. “They make me want to be better,” she says. “Sharp makes me want to be my best self.”

Sharp, she says, gave her the opportunity to go back to school and finish her pursuit of a bachelor's degree in health care administration through Pima Medical Institute.

“Sharp means I have peace of mind for my health care, for my work and for my life,” Zantopoulos says. “My donations aren’t much, but I give every paycheck and am doing my part.”

Lessons learned from family

Joshua Barder’s donations allowed him to become a “Partner” of the Foundations of Sharp HealthCare.

He says he learned a valuable lesson when it comes to giving back from his parents. “They always taught me and my siblings that charity often comes from the wallet, but generosity comes from the heart,” Barder says.

Though Barder, a supervisor of social services at Sharp Mesa Vista, shares that he didn’t always have much extra growing up, he says that never stopped him from donating to altruistic causes.

“I hear people say, ‘If I won the lottery, I would do X, Y and Z,’” Barder says. “But you miss out on the joy of being able to live generously.”

Barder’s name is on a plaque inside Sharp Mesa Vista that recognizes various donors. However, he says the credit isn’t the main reason he donates.

“A healthy community only yields other benefits, so it’s personal to me,” Barder says. “I like giving to the family that cares for my family and giving to the community that cares for our community.”

A return to giving

Leslie Rocha-Rodriguez has been an employee donor since returning to Sharp five years ago. She started working at Sharp in 2014, left the state of California in 2017, and began her second stint with the organization in 2019 as a case management assistant at Sharp Coronado Hospital.

Giving back is something she learned from her grandmother, Maria Isabel. “I remember when my grandmother used to tell me, ‘It doesn’t hurt to give a little extra and help others, especially those in need,’” Rocha-Rodriguez says.

She says that even though her family wasn’t wealthy growing up, Maria Isabel always encouraged her to donate what she could and not expect anything in return. “Grandma always said that just the simple fact of making a difference for someone else was rewarding enough,” Rocha-Rodriguez says.

Rocha-Rodriguez deducts money from her paycheck each week and has already seen the fruits of her labor, as some of the money she donated has gone toward the patients and the hospital itself. “If I can,” she says, “I will help as much as possible.”

Learn more about ways to support ENVISION and participate in Employee Giving; get the latest health and wellness news, trends and patient stories from Sharp Health News; and subscribe to our weekly newsletter by clicking the "Sign up" link below.

Jen Marsh of Sharp Mary Birch Hospital for Women & Newborns

Jen Marsh


Jen Marsh is a senior specialist at Sharp Mary Birch Hospital for Women & Newborns.

Tammytha Zantopoulos of Sharp Rees-Stealy

Tammytha Zantopoulos


Tammytha Zantopoulos is a patient access specialist with Sharp Rees-Stealy.

Joshua Barder of Sharp Mesa Vista

Joshua Barder


Joshua Barder is a supervisor of social services at Sharp Mesa Vista.

Leslie Rocha-Rodriguez of Sharp Coronado Hospital

Leslie Rocha-Rodriguez


Leslie Rocha-Rodriguez a case management assistant at Sharp Coronado Hospital.

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