The reasons people give are often as unique as the individuals who make the gifts. That’s certainly true for Joseph and Laura Alfieri, who have been giving to UCI for decades — and for a variety of very personal reasons.
Joe’s first wife, Betty, was a UC Irvine Health nurse for most of her career. Their family made annual gifts to UC Irvine Health during her years at the medical center. When Joe’s wife died young, he gave a memorial plaque that’s still in place today in the trauma center where she worked.
A few years later, Joe met and married his current wife, Laura, who shared his passion for supporting UCI. Together, they supported construction of UC Irvine Douglas Hospital, a new university hospital for the community. They also joined the Chancellor’s Club, a community of people who care deeply about UCI and help invest in its greatest needs. In fact, Joe and Laura were so aligned with that special community of university supporters that they invited a number of fellow members and UCI staff to their wedding.
Over the years, Joe and Laura gladly volunteered their service in a variety of roles, including the UC Irvine Regional Burn Center, laboratory and concierge desk (for Joe), and the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and gift shop (for Laura).
As parents of alumna Stacey McKinley ’74, they have also made a positive and lasting impact for many of the schools and units of UCI, supporting the UC Irvine School of Medicine, UC Irvine Health Department of Ophthalmology, H.H. Chao Comprehensive Digestive Disease Center, The Henry Samueli School of Engineering, the UCI Libraries and the Center for Neurobiology of Learning and Memory.
Most recently, the Alfieris made a generous donation to the UC Irvine Health SeniorHealth Center, where they visit their UC Irvine Health physicians for ongoing care. The SeniorHealth Center is a total-care center for aging adults, offering primary care, short-term consultations, memory and health assessment programs and a team of senior care experts. A pledged gift from the Alfieris will support two geriatric fellows, Aisha Khalid Memon, M.D., and Xaviour James Walker, M.D., M.P.H., DTMH, enabling these specialists to further their professional development.
“We both truly believe that UC Irvine Health is the number one source for medical care in Orange County,” said Laura. “It’s one of the top hospitals in the nation — but the people feel like our family. We love knowing that our donations are going to such a great institution that does so much good for so many people.”