Three Decades of Compassionate Care

After 26 years of volunteering, Charles Steichen has surpassed a milestone of 6,000 volunteer hours. However, his journey began with St. Jude as a patient after suffering a major heart attack in 1989.

“I was going through cardiac rehabilitation at St. Jude. I noticed a recruitment letter about volunteering at the hospital and thought I wanted to give back—so I did,” says Charles. “I wouldn’t be here without St. Jude and I have a reason to be very grateful.”

Charles has served in various departments as a lobby ambassador and supporting the surgical admitting area. A donor to St. Jude since 1990 and also an accomplished woodworker, he used to create original nativity scenes that were sold at the Harbor Lobby Gift Shop for the holiday season.

But out of all his contributions, Charles’ greatest gift is his loyalty to St. Jude.

St. Jude is blessed with 800 volunteers, just like Charles, who serve to strengthen our community by creating a healing and compassionate environment. Each year, volunteers contribute over 93,000 hours of service, which equates to $2.1 million in a cost avoidance. Their gifts of time and talent directly impact the patient experience, allowing caregivers to deliver the highest quality of care.

We are most grateful for all student, adult and Guild volunteers for being our most dedicated supporters, who live out our mission every day as the hearts and hands of St. Jude. They not only further our mission—but are a living example of it.

If you wish to join our dedicated team of compassionate caregivers, contact the Volunteer Services Team at 714-992-3000 ext. 2878.

In addition to being a dedicated volunteer, Charles has been a donor to St. Jude since 1990. His faithful generosity has supported the programs that are most meaningful to him and his wife Arlene – from cardiac rehabilitation to St. Jude’s Care for the Poor programs. By giving through a charitable IRA rollover, Charles is able to see the impact his contributions are making today while also reaping significant tax savings.

What is a charitable IRA rollover? It’s a simple gifting option available to IRA owners who are subject to the required minimum distribution (RMD). If you are 70 ½ or older, you can gift up to $100,000 from your IRA directly to charities, like St. Jude, without triggering any taxes. It’s commonly referred to as a charitable IRA rollover, but you may also hear it called a qualified charitable distribution (QCD). The charitable rollover is now permanently available, so you can support St. Jude year after year in a way that is also advantageous to you.

Why consider this gift? Your gift will be put to use today, allowing you to see the difference you’re making at St. Jude and in the community. You pay no income tax on the transfer. The charitable rollover will not count toward your adjusted gross income and, so, will not generate a deduction. That means you can save on taxes even if you don’t itemize. If you have not taken your RMD for the year, the charitable IRA rollover can satisfy all or part of that requirement.

To learn more about IRA charitable rollovers, contact Tony Truong, Gift Planning Director at 714-446-5857 or