2017 Annual Report

Last year, we were proud to offer a home away from home providing care, compassion and hope to over 3,287 families with seriously ill children who are being treated at a Texas Medical Center institution. These families come from near and far, from within Houston and Texas, and also from all over the United States and the world. In 2017, we served people from over 340 cities world-wide.


Lesha Pulido Elsenbrook
Change is everywhere at Ronald McDonald House Houston! At our flagship facility, Holcombe House, you cannot miss seeing our new 20-bedroom addition to our existing building. Starting this fall, we are excited about being able to serve 40% more families who will need our services. We are also adding seven new Family Rooms at Texas Children’s Hospital Legacy Tower, quiet places of respite for moms and dads who want to stay close to their seriously ill children. And last, but certainly not least, our new CEO, Rick Noriega who started in July, 2017, is taking important steps to insure the sustainability of RMHH Houston in the many years to come.

One thing that does not change is our commitment to providing the very best environment for our families. Despite Holcombe House construction and extra noise, our staff and volunteers make sure our families are cared for and supported during some of their most frightening days. Meals, transportation to and from the hospitals, light-hearted family activities, complimentary laundry services, and of course plenty of hugs continue daily. We did not miss one beat during Hurricane Harvey—no one missed a single doctor’s appointment and staples were abundant. Your ongoing support made all this possible.

Change can be hard but the result of all this will be a bigger, better Ronald McDonald House Houston. Stop by and see what YOU have helped us create and the positive impact you have had on our children and their families.

On behalf of the Board of Directors, thank you for being a valuable part of our team.

Lesha Pulido Elsenbrook 2017 Board President & Capital Campaign Chair

Major General Richard J. Noriega

Dear Ronald McDonald House Houston Family,

2017 was an historic and powerful year for our organization while at the same time setting an exciting course for our future. Through growth, construction, moves, leadership changes, hurricanes and world championships, our team showed its depth of character, soul, and "can do spirit." Working through these challenges with our team of Board Members, Staff, Volunteers, and Supporters, we were able to serve our families in the compassionate and respectful manner that has been this organization’s mantra. In the end, we will continue to strive to serve more families and children through our Family Centered Care model and we will work to do it better than anyone.

We are primed to achieve our strategic priorities of: 1) Expanding our Reach - through our 40% expansion at Holcombe House, and the expansion in Texas Children’s Hospital, operating 7 new family rooms; 2) Strengthening our Program - by increasing and strengthening our family centered care model throughout our footprint and ensuring we have the best trained staff and volunteers; 3) Mobilize Support in our Community - by growing our volunteers, hospital alumnae and partners while strengthening our brand throughout our region; 4) Strengthening our Culture - by revisiting our core values, emphasizing communication, stressing employee and board member excellence and building relationships.

This coming year will be a challenging year as well while we work to sustain this ever increasing capacity to serve more families and children. As a board member once said, "RMH Houston is an organization that dreams big...and then, gets it done." This year and in the years to come, we invite you to join the RMH Houston family as we embark on this new and exciting chapter in our future.

MG Richard (Rick) J. Noriega Ronald McDonald House Houston, CEO

Board of Directors

  • Lesha Pulido Elsenbrook, President
  • Chris Weber, Vice President
  • Maggie Stacy, Secretary
  • Tom McGee, Treasurer
  • John R. Allender
  • Carin Marcy Barth
  • Brandon Baudin
  • Deborah L. Bauer
  • Hans Boas
  • Kathryn Lee Bragan
  • Agatha E. Brann
  • Stuart Brown
  • James M. Chvatal
  • Muffin Clark
  • Daniel P. Connally
  • David E. Copeland
  • Emily A. Crosswell
  • Ana M. Denena
  • Mitch Derrick
  • Marc M. Dickson
  • Nancy Dinerstein
  • Karen W. Dixon
  • Suzanne Farrow
  • Deborah S. Gibson
  • Lawrence M. Hanrahan, M.D.
  • Shannon Hayes, M.D.
  • Ryan Herbst
  • David E. Hicks
  • Tandra C. Jackson
  • Elizabeth D. Kelley, Founding Member
  • W. Gregory Looser
  • Kevin M. McDonald
  • Marilyn Mogas
  • Dana O’Brien
  • Amy Reddell
  • Marjana Lindsey Roach
  • Jennifer Rustay
  • Ken Shierr
  • Susie A. Smith
  • Philip Tenenbaum
  • Christine M. Underwood
  • Gary Wilson
  • Kathryn Wilson

Advisory Board

  • Maurine L. Alfrey
  • Julie Comiskey
  • ZoAnn Dreyer, M.D
  • Dick East
  • Patti Everett
  • Lynn Guggolz
  • Randy K. Howard
  • Eugenie S. Kleinerman, M.D.
  • Carolyn Klevenhagen
  • Paula Letbetter
  • Flo W. McGee
  • Josh McMorrow
  • Marilyn M. Miller
  • Don Mullins, Founding Member
  • Ginger Niemann
  • N. J. Pierce
  • David G. Poplack, M.D.
  • Jeff S. Rawson
  • Diane M. Riley
  • Sally Bell Rutherford
  • Janet I. Theriot
  • Bette P. Thomas
  • Leonard E. Weisman, M.D.
  • Nelda Womack
  • C. Dean Woods

Chief Executive Officer

  • MG Richard J. (Rick) Noriega

Impact: Our Programs

Our Houses

Ronald McDonald House Houston provides safe, comfortable, and affordable places for families to stay close to their children while their child receives treatment for a critical illness. We offer comfortable bedrooms, hot meals, family activities, laundry services, transportation to the hospitals and grocery stores, private spaces to reflect and relax and of course loving support from volunteers and staff.

  • Holcombe House


    50 bedrooms

    • overnight stays 16,200 Overnight Stays
    • families 495 Different Families
    • meals 549 Meals Served
  • Texas Children's Hospital


    20 bedrooms, 4 family rooms and Cookie Corner at West Campus location

    • overnight stays 9,081 Naps & Overnight Stays
    • families 1,619 Different Families
    • meals 197 Meals Served
  • Children's Memorial Hermann Hospital


    14 bedrooms

    • overnight stays 5,767 Naps & Overnight Stays
    • families 1,096 Different Families
    • meals 100 Meals Served

Our Family Rooms

Our 5 Family Room programs, inside Texas Children’s Hospital and M.D. Anderson Children’s Cancer Hospital, provide safe and welcoming places for families to take a break, enjoy a peaceful moment with a fresh cup of coffee or snack, and share the companionship of other moms and dads. Only steps away from their child, parents can take a few moments of respite to rejuvenate their body, mind and soul.

  • Texas Children's Hospital


    We have family rooms, plus our signature Cookie Corner program inside Texas Children's Hospital West Campus

    • 20,834 Oncology & Hematology Patient Admissions
    • 1,045 Cardiovascular Surgeries & Procedures
    • 1,240 Cardiovascular Catheterization Cases
    • 941 NICU Patient Admissions
  • MD Anderson Children's Cancer Hospital


    Our family room offers two overnight bedrooms, a family kitchen, waiting area, and lounge.

    • overnight stays 610 Naps & Overnight Stays
    • families 77 Different Families Stayed Overnight
    • meals 66 Meals Served

Impact: Our Families

In 2017, we served families from more than 12 countries around the globe seeking care in the Texas Medical Center for their critically ill children.

90% of our families are from Texas

Supporting families is the driving force behind all that we do. Through our programs, families are able to form friendships and take comfort in having others around them who understand exactly what they are going through. And while they may not all speak the same language, they easily connect and understand each other through common experience and compassion. To learn more about the families we serve, visit our blog rmhhouston.org/family-stories.

RMH Families

Sources of Support


  • Contributions $1,561,602
  • Special Events Revenue $1,265,123
  • Occupancy Revenue $448,212
  • Investment Return $40,517
  • Other Income $3,440

Total revenue: $3,318,894

2017 was a banner year for Ronald McDonald House Houston. We surpassed every event goal, raising the dollars needed to support our families. In-kind giving was also momentous, especially as a result of Hurricane Harvey. Donors and corporate groups sent us food, supplies even knitted blankets, allowing to keep our pantry stocked while Houston area vendors were recovering from the storm. Generous packages and dollars arrived from Nevada, New York, California and even Oregon. Whether it was a generous cash contribution, canned goods or paper towels, friends came to us in our time of need.


  • Volunteers Hours of Service
  • 255

    Holcombe House

  • 231

    Texas Children's Hospital

  • 1

    Texas Children's Hospital West Campus

  • 73

    Children's Memorial Hermann Hospital

  • 71

    MD Anderson Children's Cancer Hospital


631 volunteers donated 25,881 hours for a total of $650,910 of donated time!

*The latest estimated value of volunteer time nationally is $25.15 per hour. (Indpendent Sector)

Did You Know?

Hurricane Harvey a Category 4 storm made landfall late Friday, August 25, 2017 with bands of rain hitting Houston all weekend. Overall, the downtown and medical center areas of Houston received almost 40 inches of rain causing widespread flooding especially in the Texas Medical Center.

Hurricane Harvey

Fortunately, for Ronald McDonald House Houston, the ride out team was prepared, supplies were secured and families showed the same courage and resilience they exhibit every day. RMHH did not sustain damage to the building although the front parking lot did take on water. Everyone remained safe and dry and no child missed an appointment nor had an unmet medical need.

Hurricane Harvey

During the storm, the support bonds and relationships our families form were obvious as they joined with staff to prepare meals and care for one another. Rainy evenings allowed for “competitive” BINGO called by children with RMHH logo items for prizes. Cheers from winners and smiles around the room overshadowed the rain that fell outside.

Hurricane Harvey

The rain finally stopped on Tuesday, September 5, and families were able to go back to their medical schedule. Limited staff were able to reach RMHH so services continued and the shuttle began to do runs to the hospitals. Many meal groups had to cancel as Houston roads were still flooded and many of their volunteers had houses that flooded. A call out to board members and RMHH volunteers who lived close produced cooking teams that helped through the week. Thanks to TMC, volunteers, Grocer’s Supply, and Hebert’s Meat Market supplies were restocked and families were fed and well taken care of. The board, employees and volunteers of RMHH displayed the hard work and dedication to provide families a home away from home when they need it most throughout this storm much as they do in the storms our families face in life.

2017 Event Highlights

  • Chevron Houston Marathon

    January 17, 2017

    Over 54 runners ran for our families in the Chevron Houston Marathon. Together, our runners raised $43,008.

  • The RMH Cup

    March 27, 2017

    Monday, March 27, 2017 was another marvelous day on the links at River Ridge Country Club. The course was filled to capacity with 54 teams, golfers who keep Ronald McDonald House Houston close to their heart. Read more

  • Spirit of Hope Luncheon

    October 25, 2017

    The Spirit of Hope Luncheon benefiting Ronald McDonald House Houston honors and celebrates the contributions of generous corporate volunteer groups who share a special long-term relationship with the House. Read more

  • Trafigura Run for the House

    December 2, 2017

    The 2017 Trafigura Run for the House was a lively celebration Saturday, December 2, 2017, honoring our Ronald McDonald House Houston families. This annual USATF Certified 10K and 5K Run/Walk/Roll included 1,250 participants and supportive spectators, plus 250 volunteers at Sam Houston Park in Downtown Houston. Read more

Thank You To All Of Our Generous Event & Program Supporters!

Support an Upcoming Event

Mark Your Calendars!

For more information on how to make a financial contribution or get involved in our Advancement Activities, call or e-mail Lisa Estes, Chief Advancement Officer, 713-795-3587 or lestes@rmhhouston.org

Donor Spotlight

Donor Spotlight: Friendswood Development Company, David Weekley Homes and Windsor Communities. Donor Spotlight: Friendswood Development Company, David Weekley Homes and Windsor Communities.
Friendswood Development Company

Friendswood Development Company has faithfully supported RMH Houston since 2008. They exemplify the RMH Houston mission to offer a home away from home providing care, compassion and hope to families with seriously ill children being treated in Texas Medical Center member institutions, as demonstrated by their loyal commitment to our families. When given the opportunity to get involved with RMH Houston, it was an easy choice for Friendswood, considering one of their associations used the house as a child. Being able to personally connect with families and children, see them smile and brighten their day inspires these loyal and dedicated volunteers. In 2017, Friendswood Development Company participated in the RMH Houston inaugural Spirit of Hope Luncheon. In addition to their generous financial support, the Friendswood team hosts monthly activities including meals, craft activities, mini carnivals, and even hot chocolate bars. Friendswood Development Company plays an integral role in keeping families close.

David Weekley Homes

David Weekley Homes has supported RMH Houston since 2004. This team regularly hosts and serves hot nutritious lunches to our families. But that’s not all: the local David Weekley Homes community hosts the “World’s Largest Showcase of Homes” every April, a spectacular third party fundraising event that directly benefits RMH Houston! In the Houston area, this generous partner donates $5 to RMH Houston in honor of each individual or family who visits a Showcase Home and registers with the sales consultant at that location. In 2017, Friendswood Development Company participated in the RMH Houston inaugural Spirit of Hope Luncheon. We are grateful for David Weekley Home’s generosity, and the commitment of their staff who so thoughtfully support our children and families.

Windsor Communities

Windsor Communities passion to support RMH Houston through the Windsor Bear Care program was created in 2012 as a way for Windsor associates and residents to sponsor a teddy bear to be given to local children’s hospitals. The program creator, Windsor’s Regional Marketing Director, Mindi Kissling, had the idea after having a dream about Corduroy, a book about a teddy bear that she read as a child. The thought was that teddy bears make people smile and that every child should have a bear. The Ronald McDonald House was chosen as Houston’s beneficiary because they wanted the opportunity to interact with the children and their families. Windsor Bears are a gift of comfort and hope to children and their families who are going through a difficult health journey. Volunteers unanimously agree that the soft, snuggly bears provide the children with comfort since they often come to Houston without most of their precious belongings. In 2017, Windsor Communities gave a generous financial contribution to RMH Houston and donated over 400 bears to the children who stayed at the House. Today, Windsor continues to have a strong relationship with Ronald McDonald House Houston. We are grateful for their continued support, smiling faces and cuddly Windsor Bears. It is amazing to see what just one bear can do for the spirit of a child.

Thank You

We are grateful for the generous contributions of our supportive community partners, especially those who contributed $5,000 or more to our mission in 2017.

We are so grateful to all of our big-hearted individual and in-kind donors who support our mission in so many ways.
Without your support, we could not do what we do for families.

Behind Every Door Capital Campaign

Thank you for making 2017 an incredible year for keeping families close during a challenging time. If you are moved to further support our mission, please contact us at mc@rmhhouston.org or 713-795-3563. We'd love to hear from you! Make A Gift Today Become A Volunteer