Champions Society

Who we are

Rising Champions, an annual giving society at Palmetto Health Foundation, is comprised of young leaders under age 40 who are rising to meet the needs of Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital. This dynamic group works alongside the Champions Society, a longstanding annual giving society of Children’s Hospital.

The funds contributed by Rising Champions members support the Pediatric Subspecialist Fund. The purpose of fund is to support the recruitment of pediatric subspecialists, the establishment of new programs directed by these subspecialists and to purchase necessary equipment. By joining Rising Champions, you are helping Children’s Hospital ensure we have all the doctors our children need, right here in Columbia, so that families won’t have to travel long distances for care by a pediatric subspecialist.

See more photos from the Rising Champions Launch Reception.

A message from our chairs, Shelton and Elizabeth Haile

We’ve come to know Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital in our professional lives. As an attorney (Shelton) who represents health care providers and a community pediatrician (Elizabeth), we’ve both seen the depth of services that makes Children’s Hospital one of the best in the nation. As parents, we are keenly aware of how fortunate we are to have this major pediatric referral center in our own backyard. Children’s Hospital offers 30 medical subspecialties devoted strictly to children.

For us, giving back to Children’s Hospital allows to us to play a small part in equipping the kind of Children’s Hospital we want to have available for our own children and our community. We believe it is a worthy investment. We know there are many other young parents and young professionals who care about Children’s Hospital and appreciate its importance to our community. Hence, the decision of the Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital Board to launch a new annual giving society, Rising Champions, just for you!

Our mission—to build a robust group of donors who will have a unique opportunity to learn about Children’s Hospital and whose impact will be felt for many decades to come. Funds contributed by members of Rising Champions and our longstanding sister society, Champions Society, will benefit the Pediatric Subspecialist Fund at Palmetto Health Foundation. These funds help Children’s Hospital recruit and retain the best physicians so that families won’t have to travel long distances for care.

Will you join us?

Elizabeth and Shelton Haile

Thank you to our Rising Champions members
 Dr. Greg Black and Mackie All*
Ashley and Will Batson*
Emily and Jody Bedenbaugh*
Mary and Chris Burke*
Kathryn and Heyward Cathcart*
Lilla and Ty Colpini*
Lauren and Chad Dowdy*
Sara and David Ellison*
Darcy and Trent Earhardt*
Lawrence and Rachel Flynn*
Jenna and Jared Garraux
Emily R. Gifford*
Catherine and John Griggs*
Elizabeth and Shelton Haile*
Suzanne and Drew Hampton*
Michelle and Andrew Lucas
Sarah and Matthew Myers*
Stephanie and Neil Jones*
Stephanie and Adam Parrish*
Lindsey and Tyler Priester*
Marian and Curtis Rea*
Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Lee Rhodes, III*
Meredith and Drew Rowley*
Anna and Doug Saunders*
Darby and Geordie Schroder*
Nicole and Darrell Scott*
Emmeline and Clay Short*
Deonca and Alex Shuler*
Steve and Taylor Spreeuwers*
Mr. and Mrs. Mark Thomas*
Barri and Lance Thompson
Tori and Mark Tibshrany*
Dr. Derick and Mrs. Rebekah Wenning*
*Founding members
Names in bold are the Leadership Team

Member Spotlight

David and Sara Ellison

Click to read the Ellison's story.

How to join

Membership simply requires a pledge of $500 or more, payable over a 12-month period. Gifts may be made in honor of a loved one or a caregiver. A pledge form is enclosed. Donations of a lesser amount also are welcomed. To join or learn more, contact Anna Saunders, 803-434-2830 or
Only individuals/couples who are under 40 are eligible to join. If joining Rising Champions as a couple, one member of the couple must be under 40. Over 40? Consider The Champions Society.

Click here to download a commitment form.

Member benefits

Members receive the following benefits:

  • The chance to build strong connections with other members and donors.
  • Invitations to various social and educational events hosted by Palmetto Health Foundation and Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital. Check out our program schedule at
  • Recognition on the Rising Champions page on Foundation website
  • Two FREE entries to Kemopalooza on Friday, March 9 at Music Farm (rate for general public is $50/each or $90/couple).

To learn more, contact Anna Saunders at 803-434-2830 or

Check back for 2018 dates soon! 

Inpatient Rehabilitation Program at Children's Hospital

Each year, 40-50 patients at Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital experience a condition or injury that requires specialized rehabilitation. Help them stay at home for care.


Learn More

Walk for Life and Famously Hot Pink Half Marathon, 5K and 10K

Details here