SIOUX FALLS, S.D., May 23 /PRNewswire/ -- Many children view him as a hero because of his skill as a basketball player and his numerous charitable and volunteer efforts. Today, children around the country have another reason to think of Mike Miller as a hero. Sanford Health announced today during a groundbreaking ceremony for a new children's hospital building that Mitchell, South Dakota native and NBA player Mike Miller and his wife Jennifer are donating $1 million to help ill children. The money will establish the Mike and Jennifer Miller Endowment Fund, which will provide support for Sanford Children's Hospital. Out of tremendous gratitude, Sanford has named its pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) the Mike and Jennifer Miller Pediatric Intensive Care Unit. "Everybody in South Dakota knows Mike as a basketball player," says Sanford Health President and CEO Kelby Krabbenhoft. "Mike and Jen will long be remembered for their charity and philanthropy. Mike's basketball life is being used for much more than what people see... he and Jen are going to directly impact the lives of children and families. Mike and his family are a blessing to our region and its people." Sanford Health officially broke ground on a new Sanford Children's Hospital building today during a ceremony in Sioux Falls. With an anticipated completion of 2009, this new building will provide inpatient, outpatient and clinic services for pediatric patients and their families in a family-centered environment designed to meet the unique healing needs of children. A leader in children's healthcare for nearly a century, Sanford Children's will continue to revolutionize healthcare with this new facility and the care provided by the most comprehensive and diverse team of pediatric physicians, pediatric staff and services in the region. The new building will also serve as a home base for five new pediatric clinics to be built in North America in the next ten years. Miller joins several other donors who have the desire to help children when they are most vulnerable. Mr. Denny Sanford began the dream of a new children's hospital building with his donation of $16 million in 2004. "Jennifer and I are blessed to have the opportunity to contribute to the Sanford Children's Hospital during its groundbreaking phase," says Mike Miller. "The gift not only reflects a continuing commitment to my home state of South Dakota, but also acts as a reminder to Jen and myself for our enormous good fortune in having two happy and healthy sons. Hopefully in this small way we can spread our blessings to others in need." Mike Miller is a six-year NBA veteran and current member of the Memphis Grizzlies. This past week, he was chosen to join other top NBA players on this summer's Team USA. Miller participates in many charitable and volunteer efforts including the Mike Miller Foundation. His foundation encourages kids to enjoy a healthy lifestyle, and provides aid to disadvantaged or disabled children. He and his wife, Jennifer, have two sons, Mason and Mavrick.
SOURCE Sanford Children's Hospital