Illinois State Representative Sara Feigenholtz visited Weiss last week to tour Joint University—the hospital’s specialized orthopedics center—and the rooftop garden, where she learned about the hospital’s contributions to the weekly Uptown Farmers Market. She said she appreciates the hospital as a critical part of her district and plans to partner more closely with Weiss to help seniors and other people in the community.
Weiss Chief Executive Officer Frank Molinaro led Rep. Feigenholtz first to the parking garage roof. There, gardener Jed Schenkier showed her the hospital’s apiary and the array of vegetables and fruits growing in boxes along the roof’s edge.
Back inside, Rep. Feigenholtz met with 30 physicians and members of leadership. She gave a brief speech, encouraging them to make Uptown known for what it once was: the healthcare center of Chicago. “With so much gentrification, people forget what Uptown was in the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s,” she said.
The hospital already has a stronghold on taking over that role. With more than 1,000 employees, Weiss is the largest employer in the Uptown neighborhood.
Rep. Feigenholtz went on to meet with seniors in the WISE Senior Center. Then, Terry Tuohy, director of volunteer services at Weiss, presented Rep. Feigenholtz with a bucket full of fruits and vegetables from the farmers market, which happens every Thursday through October in the Weiss parking lot.
Before leaving, Rep. Feigenholtz stopped to chat with a nurse in the Emergency Department. “Keep up the good work,” she said, smiling and patting the woman on the back. Success and happiness at Weiss—for one individual or many people—may be the key to success for the neighborhood as well.