Hein legacy highlighted at golf tournamentThe generosity of the late Al and Laurie Hein was celebrated Monday at the 30th annual golf tournament for Hudson Hospital & Clinics. Over 200 participants and guests shared their memories of the couple, who left a legacy in the Hudson area that will benefit the public forever.
The generosity of the late Al and Laurie Hein was celebrated Monday at the 30th annual golf tournament for Hudson Hospital & Clinics. Over 200 participants and guests shared their memories of the couple, as well as learned more about the philanthropic impact they made before and after their deaths. Gifts made during their lifetime and from their family trust have benefited many local organizations, and have left a legacy in the Hudson area that will benefit the public forever.
The golf tournament was started in 1982 by the Hudson Memorial Health Foundation, predecessor to the present Hudson Hospital Foundation. Hospital board member Al Hein was the first president of the foundation and the tournament was named in his honor after his death in 1986.
In addition to working tirelessly to raise money for the hospital, Hein also opened up his personal checkbook when he saw a need in the community. He thought the “old” hospital should have a gift shop so he personally funded it. It was then named The Alcove in his honor — “Al” and “cove” from where he lived.
After the Heins passed away, their generosity continued under the leadership of their friend Dan Greenwald who managed their family trust.
“Dan, on behalf of the Heins, had three favorite causes — the hospital, the YMCA and the Carpenter Nature Center,” said Jay Griggs, who served on the boards of all three. “In addition to regular annual donations for operating expenses, Greenwald made major capital contributions to all three.”
A $150,000 contribution from the Al and Laurie Hein Trust was made for the construction of the new hospital.
When the St. Croix Valley YMCA was being developed in the early 90s, it was Greenwald, through the Hein Trust, who stepped up to provide more than $100,000 to purchase the site.
“That gift provided the spark and motivation that really got us going,” says Hudson Mayor Alan Burchill, the lead organizer of the YMCA effort and its first board president.
Hein’s gifts of land and cash to the Carpenter St. Croix Valley Nature Center totaling well into seven figures currently, has resulted in more than 300 acres of woods and prairie south of Hudson that is permanently preserved for public use.
Those donations to Carpenter began in 1989, three years after Al Hein’s death, when Laurie Hein donated 95 acres of woods in the cove area to the nature center to be preserved as habitat for deer and other wildlife.
Working with Greenwald, their neighbor and fellow member of the Carpenter Nature Center board, Laurie also donated $250,000 in cash from her husband’s estate to provide an endowment for the management and care of the Wisconsin property.
After Laurie’s death in 1989, Greenwald continued the Hein Family legacy. When 77 acres of prairie just north of the Hein Woods was put up for sale by the late Stanley Pond, Greenwald bought it with $250,000 of Hein Trust funds and donated it to the nature center.
In 1990, when Pond announced plans to develop the remaining 116 acres of his farm, neighbors organized the Troy Conservancy to raise the $1 million asking price to preserve the land from development.
Greenwald again stepped in to contribute another $250,000 from the Hein Trust to launch the fundraising effort. Funds raised by the conservancy and from the sale of three lots that were carved off the parcel, along with a $200,000 Knowles-Nelson Stewardship Fund grant made it possible for the nature center to complete the purchase.
The nature center now had 291 acres of land and in 2005, the development rights on the land were sold and the entire property was placed under a stewardship contract with the state and a conservation easement with Troy Township.
As a result, the property is permanently protected from development and open to the public for wildlife observation, hiking, skiing, snowshoeing, nature study and research.
“It’s awesome to know that we have a first class hospital and a successful YMCA and to think that 100 years from now, there will be an island of 300 acres of undeveloped woods and prairies set aside for the public’s enjoyment,” says Griggs. “What a wonderful legacy the Heins have left us.”