Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital Honors Caregivers at Tiara Ball 2023

By Giving List Staff   |   March 28, 2023

After a two-year pause, the Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital Foundation recently welcomed more than 400 guests to its annual black-tie gala, the Tiara Ball, held March 25, 2023, at The Ritz-Carlton Bacara in Goleta. This year’s event raised over $500,000 to benefit emergency, trauma and critical care services at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital.

Organized by a 15-member committee of community volunteers and hospital staff, the event designers converted the resort ballroom with metallic spheres and dance floor, a celestial gold and blue color-theme, and ethereal floral arrangements.  Heather Hambleton and Lisa Iscovich co-chaired the event, also known as The Party of the Year.

Tiara Ball provides an opportunity to recognize caregivers and donors for their commitment in providing emergency, trauma and critical care to the region. Speakers for the evening’s program were Co-chairs Hambleton and Iscovich, along with Steve Zola, Chair of the Cottage Health Board of Directors; and Ron Werft, President and Chief Executive Officer of Cottage Health.  

A video story featured a former patient, Keilani Waxdeck, who sustained multiple traumatic injuries when an oncoming car crossed lanes and crashed into her vehicle. Waxdeck shared the amazing recovery and the bond she developed with the Cottage Health care team. Many of her Cottage caregivers were in attendance at the event. View the video here:

“The theme for this year’s Tiara Ball is ‘Constellation of Caring,’” said Ron Werft, President & CEO of Cottage Health. “That’s fitting because it takes so many to care for our community in times of crisis, emergency and trauma.  Some provide direct care at the bedside of patients, and others generously support lifesaving work.  Each and every one makes a difference in countless lives.”

Since 2005, the Tiara Ball has raised funds to improve the lives of thousands of adults and children who are critically ill or injured. Proceeds from the 2023 Tiara Ball will be specifically designated to help build the Emergency Department of the future for our community. Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital will become one of a select group of hospitals across the nation providing an innovative new care model for patients to receive more rapid diagnosis and treatment.  Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital is able to provide the highest quality care in a state-of-the-art facility because of the generosity of so many within our community. 

Tiara Ball 2023 Top Sponsors include:

Tiara Sponsor
Susie and Riley Bechtel
Naomi and Ben Bollag
Christine and Reece Duca
Chivaroli & Associates Insurance Services
David and Anna Grotenhuis
Peter and Kat Halper
ProWest Constructors
Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians

For more information about the Tiara Ball and ways to support Cottage Health, visit


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Every staff member was totally dedicated to my healing and recovery with the goal to get me on my feet and walking again – which they did.
Bill Werts, Grateful Patient

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Your support of Cottage Health is more important than ever. Your donations provide critical services, innovative technology, and the highest level of compassionate care to our patients and families, and to our friends and neighbors. Together, we can truly improve the health of our community – today and for generations to come.

Cottage Health Supporters

Thanks to countless donors and grateful patients who provide generous and meaningful gifts – at all levels – who help sustain our hospitals and ensure the very best care for our community.

Notable Gifts: Individual Donors 

• Mary & Richard Compton – creating the Compton Center for Medical Excellence and Innovation, bringing the best medical solutions to all who live on the Central Coast

• Ben & Naomi Bollag – funding Emergency and Trauma Care excellence

• Anna & David Grotenhuis, Wayne & Sharol Siemens, Virginia Grotenhuis – providing resources to expand patient care and strengthen our future

• Craig Mally & Louise Stewart, MD – funding the first endowed chair for medical leadership at Cottage Health

• Richard & Mimi Gunner – providing educational support for nursing leaders

• Paul Guido – supporting mental and behavioral health for our community’s youngest and most vulnerable patients

Notable gifts: Estates and Trusts

• Angela Minelli Starke – supporting pediatric excellence close to home

• Paul and Leslie Ridley-Tree – providing inspiration and loving support for the health and wellness of all Cottage patients

Notable Foundation Partners

•  Alice Tweed Tuohy Foundation

•  Wood-Claeyssens Foundation

•  Unihealth Foundation

•  Bower Foundation