“UCI Health is a cornerstone of the community that you can count on when you need it,” says Vicki Gumm, who received treatment and care here when she was diagnosed with squamous cell carcinomas.

Grateful Patient Makes Gift through Family Foundation

California and longtime Laguna Beach resident, Vicki Gumm, knows just how important it is to give back to organizations that enrich the community – for herself, her loved ones and her neighbors. 

As a member of the Kling Family Foundation, Gumm says it is an honor to carry on her family’s philanthropic legacy to improve her community and create a better tomorrow – especially when it comes to health and wellness. That’s why Gumm recently made a transformational gift of $500,000 through her family’s foundation to support the life-changing research performed by the UCI Health head and neck surgery and cancer team.

“UCI Health is a cornerstone of the community that you can count on when you need it,” she says.

Gumm first became acquainted with the worldclass, leading-edge care from UCI Health in 2013 when she was diagnosed with squamous cell carcinomas, malignant growths that begin in the cells forming the inner lining of the head and neck.

She was quickly referred to one of the best specialists in the nation: Dr. William Armstrong, UCI Health board-certified oncologist and head and neck surgeon who utilizes robotics and minimally invasive diagnostic and surgical treatments to preserve the voice, swallowing ability and appearance of head and neck cancer patients.

“Dr. Armstrong is my hero. I wouldn’t be here today had it not been for him. I’m able to enjoy a full life because of him and his surgical expertise, compassion and care. I am so grateful,” she said. “For me to make a gift to support Dr. Armstrong’s research needs in the UCI Health head and neck cancer team was seamless.”

“Giving back gives you joy,” Gumm said. “It’s rewarding to help others, to watch other people grow and learn, and to help other people get better through the trauma. I owe my life to UCI Health and feel like it’s my duty to give back so these programs continue to thrive. I hope others will join me in supporting this vital work.”


Vicki Gumm believes that if it had not been for Dr. Armstrong, UCI Health board certified oncologist and head and neck surgeon, she would “not be here today.”

A gift from your family foundation, or another entity such as a donor advised fund, can be used to create a lasting impact by supporting education, healthcare, research or an area of your choosing at UCI. You can recommend a single grant to make an immediate impact or use your foundation or fund as a tool for continuous charitable giving. You may also create a family tradition of philanthropy as your successors may continue recommending grants to charitable organizations like UCI.

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