[Congressional Record (Bound Edition), Volume 153 (2007), Part 4]
[Page 4676]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office, www.gpo.gov]

                      RECOGNIZING T. DENNY SANFORD

 Mr. THUNE. Mr. President, today I recognize T. Denny Sanford 
for his generosity recently represented by the gift of $400 million to 
Sioux Valley Hospitals and Health System. This gift is the second 
largest donation to any medical institution since 2001 and will help 
Sioux Valley transform itself into a world-class research institution. 
In recognition of the donation and in honor of Mr. Sanford, the health 
care system has been renamed Sanford Health.
  Since his birth in St. Paul, MN, in 1935, T. Denny Sanford has 
reached many outstanding milestones that deserve recognition and 
praise. After starting work at age 8 in his father's clothing 
distribution company, he spent most of his teen years selling his 
father's clothing to retail stores. He later graduated with a degree in 
psychology from the University of Minnesota and was recruited for a 
sales and marketing management position with Armstrong Cork Company.
  In the 1960s, Mr. Sanford established a manufacturers' representative 
company and a regional distribution company. Then in 1971, he bought 
Contech, a specialty chemical company, from Sears & Roebuck and took it 
public the following year. After selling Contech in the 1980s, he 
created a venture capital fund to provide financing to young 
entrepreneurs. Out of the 28 companies he has financed, 18 have become 
public corporations.
  In 1986, Mr. Sanford purchased United National Bank in Sioux Falls, 
SD. The bank, now named First Premier Bank, has expanded throughout 
South Dakota and includes Premier Bankcard Inc., which is a national 
leader in the credit card industry.
  Although Mr. Sanford is well-known for his business achievements, he 
is even more distinguished for his philanthropy. He has donated 
millions to organizations that are close to his heart and even started 
the Sanford Foundation for charitable giving. In 2005, he gave over 
$70.5 million to charitable causes in the United States and ranked 14th 
on the Chronicle of Philanthropy's list of America's most-generous 
donors. Additionally, in 2006, he was named to the Business Week Top 50 
list of most-generous philanthropists in the United States.
  Before his most recent donation, Mr. Sanford had contributed $20 
million to Sioux Valley for expansion with South Dakota's medical 
school and $16 million for Sanford Children's Hospital, which plans to 
open in 2009. This recent gift of $400 million will be used to achieve 
four major goals. These goals are to build 5 pediatric clinics around 
the country, to expand research, to build a health care campus with 
over 20 separate facilities, and to specialize in a specific line of 
medical research that will result in a cure.
  T. Denny Sanford's generous gift to Sioux Valley will encourage 
prosperity and growth for South Dakota by generating an estimated 9,200 
new jobs, adding approximately $1.2 billion to the economy, drawing 
patients from around the world, and improving the wellness of our 
citizens. This donation will reach people from across the country and 
make South Dakota a leader and magnet in medical research.
  T. Denny Sanford is a giving man with a passion for making a 
difference in the lives around him. He is even known to have a goal to 
``die broke.'' Because of his profound generosity and desire to help 
others, T. Denny Sanford's influence will be evident for many 
generations to come.
  On behalf of the State of South Dakota, I am honored to rise and say: 
Thank you, Denny. Your significant gift will have a lasting influence 
not only on the people of South Dakota but on people throughout the 
world that will be affected by your selfless generosity.