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Brunt's gift reflects deep commitment to Summa Health

Longtime nurse, administrator donates to Women's Health

Barbara Brunt, RN, a one-time middle-school English teacher, transitioned to healthcare early in life and became a Summa Health icon of education, retiring in 2016 as Magnet® Program director after 25 years of service.

She may have changed her career, but not her calling. Education remained a common thread through every position. 

“She’s always been in the education realm, in nursing and prior to nursing,” said Sandy Germano, quality coordinator at Summa Health and a longtime colleague. “She has been such a treasured resource for Summa Health. I know I learned a lot from Barbara, and so did so many others.”

Barbara’s legacy continues to grow in retirement. In 2017, she established the Barbara A. Brunt Women’s Health Endowment Fund in memory of her mother, Betty Johnson

Supporting women’s health seemed like the logical way to go,” Barbara said. Summa has been very good to me, so I wanted to give back.”

She opted for an increasingly popular way to structure a planned gift, naming Summa Health as the beneficiary of her annuity. She also decided to use the annual income she currently receives from the annuity to establish a named endowment that will support women’s health during her lifetime. The funds remaining in her annuity after her lifetime will transfer to Summa Health from her estate, increasing the size of her endowment and its impact on women’s health far into the future.

“We are so grateful for friends like Barbara,” said Edward M. Ferris, M.D., chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and medical director of the Women’s Health Institute at Summa Health. “With her help, we can continue to make a major impact on women’s healthcare in our region.” 

Barbara volunteers at Summa Health one day a week while also staying active with a variety of nursing organizations and watching two of her three grandchildren one day a week.

“It made sense to me to turn my annuity into a gift to Summa Health,” Barbara said. “I have seen all the good things that Summa has done for our patients and for me personally. This is my little way of saying thank you.” 

NOTE: This article originally appeared in the Spring 2018 edition of Promise magazine.

For more information about donating to Summa Health, contact Shelley Green, senior director of development, 330.375.6891 or


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