Physician sells rocks to fundraise $100k for Children's Hospital of Wisconsin

When David Margolis, MD, learned Nordstrom sold out of $85 leather-wrapped rocks this year, he was inspired to start a fundraising campaign called "Rocks for a Reason."

Dr. Margolis pledged to send every person who donated $85 to Milwaukee-based Children's Hospital of Wisconsin — where he serves as director of the bone marrow transplant program — a rock in the mail.

"I figured if people were willing to pay $85 for rock that didn't do anything, there must be some people out there who would be willing to pay $85 for a rock that would help bring joy to kids in the hospital," Dr. Margolis said in a statement. The donations go toward medical care, community-based health initiatives and research, according to the hospital website, which proclaims, "And on top of that, you'll still get a rock, and it'll be sent to you by Dr. Margolis himself!"

The rocks, originally gathered from Lake Michigan, come with a tag signed by Dr. Margolis. A local landscaper stepped in to donate the rest of the rocks once Dr. Margolis learned taking rocks from the Lake Michigan shoreline violated a local ordinance.

The campaign has already garnered $50,000 from more than 500 individual donors in 39 states, and Nordstrom pledged to match those funds, bringing the total to more than $100,000.

"I have been blown away by the support we have received. And now this generous gift from Nordstrom. It's heartwarming how many people are reaching out to help us help kids! We are going to need more rocks," Dr. Margolis said in statement.


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