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Bob and Katie Gould

Great Givers – The Goulds

October 8th, 2015

Bob and Katie Gould have been loyal supporters of Ronald McDonald House – Madison since the very first year of the House’s existence. When I sat down with them recently to talk about their long-standing support I asked why they began supporting us so long ago.

Katie recounted what it was like for her and Bob, in the days before there was a Ronald McDonald House in Madison when their then three-year-old daughter was hospitalized at Madison General Hospital after sustaining a serious skull fracture. Katie says, “It was a very frightening time… I was at the hospital day and night, sleeping in chairs, wherever I could.Bob was trying to take care of our son and keep it together at home and get back to the hospital as much as he could.”

When the planning for the Ronald McDonald House in Madison began, the Goulds were “in.” Having had the experience they did with their own child, they said they “were grateful there would be a place for families who needed it.” They both could see the value of a place that would keep families together and provide support during a very frightening time.

As Katie put it, “All you want is for your child to have a happy, healthy life, but sometimes life throws a rock in your road.” She and Bob were happy to get involved and support RMHC because it “would help a family through their worst time.” They describe their sense of philanthropy and volunteerism with the anonymous quote: “Nobody can do everything, but everybody can do something.” They are glad to share the fact that their daughter who was seriously injured all those years ago is married, has two daughters and is a successful businesswoman. Her husband and sixteen-year-old daughter volunteer at a children’s hospital in Minneapolis providing respite for parents who are staying at Ronald McDonald House while dealing with their own seriously ill child.

Bob is retired from Stokely USA. He is a volunteer at the Henry Vilas Zoo and on the North Country Trail. Katie is a retired elementary school teacher, who, in addition to her part-time work at the UW School of Medicine and Public Health, volunteers at the Cambridge Community Library and for VSA Wisconsin.

Great Givers is a new feature where we profile people who generously support RMHC-Madison and the stories behind their philanthropy.