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PRESS RELEASE / ANNOUNCEMENTS Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Dream Foundation Expands National Board of Directors

Santa Barbara, Calif. –– Dream Foundation, the only national dream-granting organization for terminally-ill adults, announced the appointment of Carol Nygren, Vice President of Worldwide Live Entertainment for NBC Universal Brand Development, and Virginia McFerran, President of Optum Analytics, a division of United Health Group, to its National Board of Directors.

“We are delighted to welcome Virginia and Carol to our Board of Directors,” said Dream Foundation’s Chief Executive Officer Kisa Heyer. “Both women are dynamic leaders in their industries and wonderful advocates for our mission. We are fortunate to have their insight, expertise and passion.”

In her role at NBC Universal, Nygren is responsible for leading the strategy and development for cross category world-class live events and entertainment. Prior to joining NBC Universal, Nygren held senior positions at Fathom Events, Live Events Management, and spent 16 years at the Walt Disney Company, where she was instrumental in developing “Disney on Ice” and “Disney Live” into globally recognized brands.

“It is a pleasure and an honor to join Dream Foundation’s Board of Directors. To be able to serve alongside others in making those last days of life easier or a little more joyful is quite meaningful to me and to be able to contribute to those in need of these services is humbling. It is important for them to know that others care about them and their Dreams and needs,” said Nygren about her appointment.

As President of Optum Analytics, Virginia McFerran advises executives in health systems, insurance companies, biotech firms, and state governments on developing strategies and analytic competencies to achieve transformational goals and thrive in the highly regulated healthcare industry. Prior to joining Optum Analytics, McFerran served as Chief Information Officer at UCLA Health and Cornell Medical Center, and held leadership positions at the Salk Institute and Microsoft.

“It is a privilege to have any role in making someone’s life better and both a mystery and a blessing to discover that the dying are most often concerned with the wellbeing of the survivors, “ said McFerran. “The selflessness and love in this special organization is reflected in the requests and stories of thousands of Dreamers realizing their Dream.”

“Virginia and Carol’s accomplished and diverse backgrounds will greatly enhance the board of our growing organization,” said Board Chair Kenneth P. Slaught. “The innovative efforts they have made in their respective fields will transcend and provide a refreshing new outlook for our board, our staff and ultimately our Dreamers.”


About Dream Foundation:
Dream Foundation, the only national dream-granting organization for terminally-ill adults, fulfills final Dreams that provide inspiration, comfort and closure at the end of life. With the support of a nationwide network of volunteers, hospices, health care organizations and committed donors, Dream Foundation has given life to more than 25,000 final Dreams over the past two decades and has never turned down a qualified applicant. The Foundation is proud to maintain Charity Navigator’s four-star rating—its highest—for sound fiscal management ensuring its donors and partners that their investment will be used wisely. Dream Foundation receives no state of federal funding—we rely solely on private donations. To support our mission please visit DreamFoundation.org/donate.


For a photo of Ms. Nygren or Ms. McFerran, or for additional information, please contact Dani Cordaro at dani@dreamfoundation.org.

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