Tuesday, January 25, 2011 11:44 AM

Remembering Alice A. Peters

Alice A. Peters, a longtime and generous donor-investor in Community Medical Centers, passed away on Jan. 24 at the age of 97.

Rob Saroyan, vice president of Community’s Foundation, called Mrs. Peters a “ a great friend and tremendous philanthropist.” He said, “We have so many wonderful memories of Alice and her husband – the late Leon S. Peters – and know, along with him, she will be remembered as an example and an icon of philanthropy throughout our Valley especially to the hospital.”

The Peters name appears many places in Community’s hospitals on departments and wings made possible by the foundation started by Leon S. Peters. Among them are the Leon S. Peters Rehabilitation Center and the Leon S. Peters Burn Center at Community Regional Medical Center, and the Leon S. & Pete P. Peters Future Generations Center at Clovis Community Medical Center.

Saroyan remembered Mrs. Peters as “a humble woman who was well respected, loved and set an example for others to emulate, and who appreciated hard work.”

She once said, “My husband started with nothing. He didn’t have an education beyond high school and neither did I. But after working very hard, with never as much as a day off from work, he was able to start his own foundation in 1959.”

Alice and Leon Peters shared a great many things besides an enduring 41-year marriage. They didn’t have any children but thought starting the foundation was a way of leaving their legacy for others, Saroyan said. She told Saroyan, “Charity work is part of life. We all have to do some of it.”  And she did … for so many people, from all walks of life.

Besides the numerous programs and facilities the Peters Foundation supported over decades, Alice was committed to nursing education and established the Alice A. Peters Nursing Scholarship in 2002.

“There are so many wonderful things Alice and her family has done for Community and the people of our Valley,” Saroyan said.  “While we at Community will miss Alice terribly, her legacy and memory will be very much cherished by us all.”

Community’s Foundation has established the Alice A. Peters Memorial for those who wish to make a gift in Alice’s honor.