With any celebration, it’s the people involved who make a difference
Methodist Hospital’s annual Mardi Gras event is no exception. With their selfless dedication and hard work on the annual Mardi Gras festivities, cardiologist Stephen Soldo, MD, and his wife, Patty, have helped grow this annual fundraising gala that supports Methodist Hospital. For this, and for many other reasons, the Soldos will be recognized as King and Queen of Mardi Gras 2017.
The 22nd annual Mardi Gras celebration will be held at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 28, at Sirona’s in Santa Anita Park, and the evening promises to once again be filled with great fun, prizes, and entertainment. Funds raised this year will support the hospital’s digital mammography program.
“We are humbled and honored to be selected Mardi Gras King and Queen,” Patty says. “This event has been very important to us, and we look forward to contributing every year.” For Patty, “every year” actually means…every year since she has been a co-chair of the event for four consecutive years!
“I enjoyed the experience so much my first year that I’ve been co-chairing ever since,” Patty says. “It’s been very gratifying to contribute to our hospital and to positively impact patient care. With every Mardi Gras we’ve worked hard to make the event better every year.”
This year’s event co-chairs are Mary Bigley, Erica Cornejo, and Sherry Wang, who originally introduced Patty to Mardi Gras. “We’re very excited to honor Dr. and Mrs. Soldo,” says co-chair Sherry Wang. “The Soldos have both contributed so much to our hospital and our community and they are very deserving of this honor.”
Patty was raised in Argentina, and immigrated to the U.S. at the age of 10. She earned her nursing degree from Loma Linda University, and has been a registered nurse for more than 20 years. Dr. Soldo, a staff cardiologist at Methodist Hospital, was born in New York, and grew up in Southern California. He earned his undergraduate degree at UCLA and his MD at USC.
Dr. Soldo and Patty met by chance in 1993 when he was an intern at LAC+USC Medical Center, and she was a nursing student. He needed help from a nurse in the middle of the night and was surprised when this cheerful nursing student who spoke both Korean and Spanish volunteered to help. After a two-year courtship, the couple married in 1995.
Their affiliation with Methodist Hospital goes back a long way. Dr. Soldo has served as Chair of Internal Medicine, Director of Cardiodiagnostics, Director of Cardiac Rehabilitation, served on the Peer Review Committee, and now serves as Vice Chief of Staff. In addition to co-chairing Mardi Gras for four consecutive years, Patty has been a committee member for Foundation endeavors like Crystal Ball, WIN (Women Investing in Nurses), and Club 300. She volunteered as a nurse for the Latino and Chinese Health Fairs, and the Partners in Health program. The Soldos live in Arcadia, and have two sons, Jordan and Jason, both of whom attend Arcadia High.
“I’m not sure many people in our community realize how highly the hospital is rated, and how excellent the care is,” says Dr. Soldo. “Methodist is among the top 2% of all hospitals in the country to receive a five-star rating from Medicare, and is the only hospital in Los Angeles County to receive this rating.”
“Fund raising from Mardi Gras will allow the hospital to obtain a digital mammography system so we can perform technologically advanced breast cancer detection,” Dr. Soldo says. “This is a very important service for the women in our community. Though one in eight women will develop breast cancer during their lifetime, the disease has a high cure rate when detected early. However, it is critical for our hospital to get support from the community, and events like the Mardi Gras are an opportunity to contribute to the hospital in a big way while enjoying a really fun party.”
Patty feels the event will contribute significantly to women’s health in our community. “It is important to support our local hospital,” Patty says. “By supporting Mardi Gras this year, you may help save the life of a woman you know--a mother, a daughter, a sister, a friend.”
Mardi Gras 2017 promises to be one of the best ever and offers great food, lively entertainment, colorful costumes, new friends – as well as a big boost for breast cancer detection at Methodist Hospital.
“We encourage everyone to come out and have a great time,” Dr. Soldo says.