Marus Family Comforts Others with Philanthropic Gift
When Leslie Marus was in graduate school, a sentiment in her daily planner stuck with her: Your legacy should be that you left it better than when you got it. Whether picking up trash or making a meaningful donation, Leslie and her family believe in making a positive impact. Their gift to the new Cone Health MedCenter for Women Fund establishes a Serenity Room where patients and their families can privately grieve.
“I believe in leaving a good legacy during my lifetime,” says Leslie. “I started my journey to become a mother later in life. I quickly realized you need an army…so I appreciate how difficult the journey is for those without good insurance, jobs or families to support them especially when things do not work out as planned.”
While Leslie, her husband J.J., and their twins prepare to welcome a little girl this fall, their journey to become a family has not been an easy one. After struggling to conceive, they endured two miscarriages. While Leslie says her story has a happy ending, she understands many others do not have good outcomes or the resources to navigate difficult paths.
When Leslie toured the new building in her role as Women’s & Children’s Center advisory board member, she was immediately drawn to the idea of a Serenity Room. Marveling at the inclusive and welcoming design of the center, she appreciated Cone Health’s “incredible attentiveness” to women’s needs. A calm and reassuring space, the room is located on the first floor with a private side exit so people do not have to pass through the lobby.
“I feel like the Serenity Room is an opportunity to wrap my arms around all these women to support them and allow them to grieve,” says Leslie. “For women to be given the time and permission to have and truly feel these feelings – especially in a medical setting – is really remarkable.”
Both Triad natives, Leslie and J.J. are drawn to giving back in ways that make their community a better and more inviting place for all. Their gifts are oriented around their love of family life and compassion for others.
“From a young age, I came to understand the beauty and power of relationships between women from my mother and grandmother,” emotionally concludes Leslie. “I love that the new center reflects this connection. It’s a place where women of different ages, background and experiences all feel included, cared for and welcome.”