“Batkid” visionary to focus on national expansion, funding diversity
Suflita Wilson, who created the viral Batkid phenomenon
as executive director of Make-A-Wish Greater Bay Area
, has joined CoachArt as chief opportunity director. CoachArt is a nonprofit organization that matches volunteer coaches with chronically ill children and their siblings for free arts and athletics lessons in California.
CoachArt has recently developed infrastructure and technology that will enable the organization to scale up and expand its services to children nationwide.
Ms. Wilson will primarily focus on national expansion and funding diversity. Her unique set of skills and contacts from more than a decade of working with children with life-threatening medical conditions is a valuable asset for the organization.
“Families impacted by childhood chronic illness will benefit greatly from the addition of Patricia
to our team,” CoachArt Executive Director Greg Harrell-Edge said. “This hire couldn’t come at a better time for CoachArt as we plan to extend our mission
to several more regions and work towards building a nationally recognized charity.”
“I feel like every experience I’ve had thus far has helped prepare me for this new role,” Ms. Wilson said. “This is a rare opportunity to help an exceptional charity in a high growth period; we intend to launch several pilot expansion markets and will seek corporate and media partners as well as identify local boards to help us reach all children battling chronic illnesses.”
Batkid (Miles Scott) Gets Key to the City, Make-a-Wish Greater Bay Area
In 2013, when Ms. Wilson was executive director of Make-A-Wish Greater Bay Area, Miles Scott, a five-year-old boy with leukemia, expressed a wish to be Batman. Thanks to Ms. Wilson’s vision and leadership, Miles’ wish came true in a way that created smiles worldwide. On November 15 of that year the Mayor of San Francisco, the city’s police and fire departments, the San Francisco Giants, the San Francisco Chronicle, and countless others turned San Francisco into Gotham so Miles could thwart criminals and bring peace to the city as “Batkid.”
Ms. Wilson resides in San Francisco and, in addition to her role with CoachArt, maintains a busy schedule of consulting, writing, and speaking.
CoachArt creates a transformative arts and athletics community for families impacted by childhood chronic illness. CoachArt was founded in 2001 by Zander Lurie and Leah Bernthal in memory of Zander’s father, Dr. Arthur Lurie, a cardiac surgeon who recognized the need for long-term support and enrichment among the pediatric patient population. Today, this non-profit organization provides high-quality, no-cost lessons and activities in arts and athletics to children in Los Angeles, San Diego, and the San Francisco Bay Area with the support of volunteers, community partners, and generous donors. To get involved please visit CoachArt.org/get-involved or call 213-736-2850.