The first $15 million will go to hospital’s heart and vascular institute, which will be renamed the Jeffrey M. Carlton Heart and Vascular Institute after the Long Beach businessman who left part of estate to the hospital.
Hoag Hospital has received a surprise $53 million estate gift – the largest donation in hospital history – from a Los Angeles County businessman whose late father was a patient and a donor, although on a far smaller scale.
Jeffrey Carlton, 61, of Long Beach died in September 2012 from heart problems. A private, modest man, Carlton never informed Hoag of his plans to create a private foundation that will distribute money to the hospital for years and potentially decades to come, said Flynn Andrizzi, president of the Hoag Hospital Foundation.
The first $15 million from the private foundation will go to the nonprofit hospital’s heart and vascular institute, which will be renamed the Jeffrey M. Carlton Heart and Vascular Institute, Hoag announced Monday. The hospital only recently learned of the donation.
“It’s something that will absolutely transform everything we do at Hoag,” Andrizzi said. “This is a gift that will just keep on giving. It will continue to come to us over the years.”
Carlton founded Press Forge, a Paramount company, in 1978, and served as chairman and CEO until his death. The company is one of the largest U.S. suppliers of forging services and products to commercial and military aerospace, nuclear, oil and gas exploration and industrial markets.
He was not married and had no children.
“Jeff was absolutely the finest businessman I have ever met in my life,” said company president Mike Buxton, who is serving as Carlton’s trustee. “He only cared about two things. He cared about his customers and he cared about his employees. All his business decisions were based around what’s the best thing for those two groups of people. He was one of the most down-to-earth, well-rounded guys.”
Carlton’s father, Allan Carlton Jr., spent the latter part of his life in Newport Beach. He donated $1 million to Hoag in 2002 and gave other smaller gifts before his death in 2004 at 79.
“Jeff did think a lot of his dad and the hospital that took care of him,” Buxton said. “That’s what I believe was the connection between him and the gift to Hoag.”
Other local hospitals have also received record estate gifts from unexpected donors.
In 2009, UCI Medical Center received $21 million for its new hospital from M.A. Douglas, a real estate developer from Anaheim who died at 97.
In 2011, Children’s Hospital of Orange County received $30 million from Robert Tidwell, an investment banker from Garden Grove who died at 87. The money supported CHOC’s new patient tower.
Andrizzi said the initial funding will help pay for technology and education of clinical staff, as well as the facility.
“It’s incredibly exciting and heartwarming that people would do something like that and be so charitable,” he said. “It’s just incredible funding that we just wouldn’t get any other way.