Nordstrand Black - March 2020





MARCH 2020


Meanwhile, my husband and legal partner Doug Black is beginning a similar journey. I’m proud to announce his recent election to the Montecito Association Board of Directors. For those unfamiliar, since 1938, the Montecito Association has been dedicated to the preservation, protection, and enhancement of the semirural residential character of Montecito. As a nonprofit association, they are especially relevant after the devastating fires and mudslides. Doug is particularly well-suited for the role he’s taking in community planning. With his construction background, he’s able to lead the conversation when it comes to issues like roundabouts, freeway-widening projects, and land-use disputes. The board meets with other community leaders, from fire departments and school boards to local and state legislators. He sees this as a great learning opportunity to give back to the community which went through so much and is still rebuilding. Doug is excited to take on this new role. Doug and I care deeply about our clients and the community we share. As attorneys, we recognize we can do only so much to help — what good is a settlement for your injuries if you don’t have access to quality care? How many more accidents can be predicted without proper street planning? By volunteering our time outside the courtroom, we’ve found we can have a more holistic impact helping the people we represent.

The Cottage Rehabilitation Hospital Foundation (CRHF) Board is composed of volunteers dedicated to giving members of our community local access to quality rehabilitation care. By raising money for the Cottage Rehabilitation Hospital, those facing short-term and long-term disabilities can stay close to family and friends without making the two-hour drive to LA. For the past five years I’ve been honored to serve on the foundation’s board of directors, and now I am proud and humbled to announce that I’ve been elected Chair. I volunteered on the CRHF board because I know the difference that individualized, compassionate care can make for people recovering from serious injuries. Not only does the foundation’s support of the rehab hospital help their patients access care, but it also helps families who provide their loved ones in need of long-term care. Coast Caregiver Resource Center, a program of Cottage Rehabilitation Hospital, provides resources and support services to caretakers of adult family members with brain impairments and other chronic health conditions. opportunity to see the great work the hospital does for numerous clients. However, my connection goes even deeper. Over the years, my friends and loved ones have relied on the Cottage Rehabilitation Hospital to get back on their feet. To have the opportunity to support such a great local service that has directly helped the people I care about is a responsibility I’m happy to embrace. As a personal injury lawyer representing accident survivors, I’ve had the

CRHF is strong and growing. Last year alone, the CRHF board raised over $936,000 in gifts and pledges — almost double our goal of $550,000. In turn, the foundation’s Patients Assistance Fund provided more than $230,000 in aid to approximately 150 patients who use the aquatic center and other community services. We were also able to provide funding for advanced training to 72 therapists who staff the hospital. Best of all, we were able to bring some truly empowering events to our community. Last July, CRHF supported the 34th annual Jr. Wheelchair Sports Camp. A total of 42 campers ages 6–19 participated in the five-day event, which was packed with activities ranging from basketball to swimming. We followed this amazing event in September with a community Empowerment Educational Series Event. The guest speaker at this event was Jesse Billauer, founder of Life Rolls On, an organization that allows people with disabilities to enjoy the freedom and thrill of surfing. Our foundation has plans to work with Jesse to put on an adaptive surfing camp right here in Santa Barbara in the fall of 2020. 2020 promises to be a busy year for CRHF as we’re kicking off our fundraising campaign to relocate the rehabilitation hospital to the brand-new Goleta Hospital campus. This upgrade to a new facility will make it even easier for the rehabilitation experts to serve patients and their families. Having seen firsthand the good that Cottage Rehabilitation Hospital does, I’m eager to tackle this new and exciting challenge.

– Renee Nordstrand

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