Not only did Elizabeth Bradford’s kindness in the 1910s inspire her father, Thomas L. Bradford, to fund the establishment of The Bradford Memorial Hospital for Babies – which later became Children’s Medical Center – it began a family legacy of generosity to Children’s that has been instrumental to our hospital’s success, spans five generations and continues to this day.
Ann Goddard Corrigan, Elizabeth’s great niece and Thomas’ great granddaughter, represents the fourth Bradford generation to help lead and serve Children’s.
She recalls hearing about Children’s from her grandfather, Tom L. Bradford, Jr., and her father, W.R. Goddard, at Sunday dinners when she was growing up. Their musings, anecdotes and observations of their days in philanthropic leadership roles captivated and inspired her.
Ann’s mother, Maidie Bradford Goddard, and aunt, Tommie Bradford Walton, also both volunteered and supported Children’s through philanthropy and as board trustees.
It was ingrained in my mind since I was little that helping Children’s was one of the most important things you could do,” Ann said.
A Family Commitment to Children’s
Ann went on to volunteer at Children’s when she was in high school and then continued her relationship with Children’s as a young adult by joining the Women’s Auxiliary. In 1982, she began an illustrious 30-year tenure as a Children’s board member. She received the Distinguished Service to Children Award in 2006 for her visionary service.
“I’ve seen Children’s transform from a small, regional hospital to a nationally recognized healthcare system that can care for any child, regardless of the severity or complexity of their condition,” Ann said. “I’m so proud of how far the hospital has come and the direction that it’s going.”
Ann is also proud to see her son, Bryan Corrigan, now serving on the Children’s Medical Center Associates Board, representing the fifth generation of the Bradford family to give back to Children’s.
“Bryan has a passion for Children’s,” Ann said. “It’s very fulfilling for me to know that he’s on the board and that his knowledge will benefit Children’s.”
Like his mother, Bryan remembers growing up in a family environment that unquestionably supported Children’s.
“I grew up knowing that some other causes may be equal to Children’s, but none were better than Children’s,” Bryan said. “The ripple effect that Children’s has rings true with our family. If you make a difference in a child’s life, you’re making an exponential impact on all the other people they will encounter throughout their lifetime.”
Children’s Next 100 Years
Now that Children’s is heading into its second century, Ann and Bryan see a future where Children’s is not only treating diseases but curing them through research efforts like the Children’s Medical Center Research Institute at UT Southwestern.
They also anticipate future generations of their family continuing the legacy of serving Children’s.
“It will be important for my children to serve somewhere, and, for our family, there is no more important place to serve than Children’s,” Bryan said. “We love Children’s and always have and always will.”