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Odessa Brown Children's Clinic Receives Gift from NBA Coach Lenny Wilkens

February 19, 2004

Seattle, Wash.: Lenny Wilkens, head coach of the New York Knicks and the NBA's winningest coach, recently presented a gift of $100,000 raised through his annual Lenny Wilkens Celebrity Classic to Odessa Brown Children's Clinic, a clinic of Children's Hospital and Regional Medical Center.

Seattle, Wash.: Lenny Wilkens, head coach of the New York Knicks and the NBA's winningest coach, recently presented a gift of $100,000 raised through his annual Lenny Wilkens Celebrity Classic to Odessa Brown Children's Clinic, a clinic of Children's Hospital and Regional Medical Center.

Since Odessa Brown Children's Clinic opened in 1970, Wilkens has been a strong supporter of the clinic and its mission to provide critical health services – including a full range of primary care, dental and mental health services – to children in Seattle's Central Area, regardless of their families' ability to pay. With this gift, the Lenny Wilkens Celebrity Classic will have donated more than $550,000 over the last nine years.

"Lenny Wilkens is an amazing community advocate," said Dr. Benjamin Danielson, medical director, Odessa Brown Children's Clinic. "This gift, along with the outstanding support his fundraisers have provided the Odessa Brown Children's Clinic over the past several years, have been crucial to the families we serve.

Fulfilling our mission to provide effective preventive health care to children from an underprivileged background is an increasingly challenging task. Lenny Wilkens understands the value of these services. He recognizes the need for sports physicals and sports health education in a population who suffer especially severe chronic diseases and whose resources are limited. He appreciates the idea that primary health care is more than just looking in kids' ears."

Some of the funds will be directed to support the clinic's efforts to offer children sports physicals prior to participating in any sports activity, as well as specialty care for children suffering from life threatening heart and asthmatic symptoms. Garfield High School athletes also thanked Wilkens for supporting the sports physical program at the clinic.

"There have been too many deaths of young athletes at the high school and college level which could have been prevented if health problems were identified prior to involvement in strenuous sports activities," said Lenny Wilkens. "Our donation can help make this possible for many young children whose families may not be able to afford it otherwise."

Washington Mutual, a major sponsor of the Lenny Wilkens Celebrity Classic since it started, also helped present the gift. This year the Lenny Wilkens Celebrity Classic will celebrate its Tenth Anniversary and will be held August 17 - 18, 2004. More information is available online.

"Lenny Wilkens' ongoing philanthropy allows us to do what we do best: promote healthy, bright futures for the children we serve," continued Dr. Danielson. "His selfless efforts are a model of philanthropy for others to emulate. I salute and celebrate his spectacular community advocacy."

About Seattle Children's Hospital

Consistently ranked as one of the best children’s hospitals in the country by U.S. News & World Report, Children’s serves as the pediatric and adolescent academic medical referral center for the largest landmass of any children’s hospital in the country (Washington, Alaska, Montana and Idaho). For more than 100 years, Children’s has been delivering superior patient care and advancing new treatments through pediatric research. Children’s serves as the primary teaching, clinical and research site for the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Washington School of Medicine. The hospital works in partnership with Seattle Children’s Research Institute and Seattle Children’s Hospital Foundation. For more information, visit http://www.seattlechildrens.org.

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