giving for good bemidji

For patients at the Sanford Joe Lueken Cancer Center, the Sanford Bagley Medical Center, the Sanford Bemidji Crisis Center, and beyond, your generosity makes all the difference. Together, we’re powering new insights, driving breakthroughs and providing patients and families with world-class, comprehensive care close to home in the Bemidji region.


Last year, we put $771,800 in philanthropic gifts to work across the Bemidji region.

We added new Centrella “smart” beds to help staff at the Sanford Bagley Medical Center better monitor patients through contact-free detection of cardiac and respiratory motion, provided patients with a new Bioness Integrated Therapy System for inpatient rehabilitation, supported our EmPATH unit that serves those who need emergency psychiatric care, and even trained staff with mock code exercises using our REALITi simulator.


Local Priorities

The Sanford Health Foundation serves four diverse regions, each with their own distinct and meaningful priorities. Here are some of the initiatives that the Bemidji region supports.

For Cancer

More than 3,000 of our neighbors across the region turn to the Sanford Joe Lueken Cancer Center every year. Donors support costs of lifesaving MRIs, services like nurse navigation at no cost to patients, complimentary wigs and head coverings, advanced technologies for cancer prevention, detection and treatment, staff education, and so much more

Learn More

For Behavioral Health

In the last 10 years, the Sanford Bemidji Mobile Crisis Transportation saw a 316% increase among adults needing psychiatric crisis services and a 338% increase among children. Philanthropy supports psychiatric services for children and adults at the Sanford Bemidji Crisis Center, scholarship and internship opportunities for local students in behavioral health fields, community and school-based programming to expand mental health screening and access, and so much more.

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For Breast Health

Gifts cover the costs of lifesaving MRIs, 3D mammograms through our donor-funded mobile unit, services that are free to patients like nurse navigation that helps mitigate the stresses of a cancer diagnosis, complimentary wigs and head coverings, and so much more.

Learn More

Bemidji’s Signature Events

Below are a few of the signature events we host in the Bemidji region. To see more events in Bemidji, visit our calendar.

Get Involved through Fundraising

At Sanford Health, our doctors, researchers and caregivers are working to bring health, hope and healing to more than 1.2 million people across the Upper Midwest. With you on our team, we can accelerate our race to uncover new breakthroughs, develop new treatments and create meaningful programs that support patients and their families.


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Bemidji Team

Deb Koski

Chief Philanthropy Officer, CFRE

Amy Hinkemeyer

Vice President – Fargo & Bemidji

Emily Aitken-MaGaurn

Senior Development Officer – Bemidji

Bemidji Board Members


Jake Ellefson

Otter Trail Power Company – Area Manager

Vice Chair

Joseph Corser, MD

Sanford Health – Emergency Room Physician

Secretary / Treasurer

Bruce Bentfield

First National Bank Bemidji – Commercial Loan Officer / Indirect Lending Division Manager

Jake Bluhm

Bluhm Insurance Agency, Inc. – State Farm Insurance Agent

Karla Eischens

Sanford Health of Northern Minnesota – President

Mike Fogelson

Up North Sports – Business Owner

Tim Dondelinger

Dondelinger Chevrolet Buick GMC – Business Owner

Dr. John Hoffman

Bemidji State University – President

Gretchen Knutson

Delta Dental Plan of Minnesota – Vice President Customer Service

Jared Pink

TruStar Federal Credit Union – Vice President