‘Make A Wish’ honors Rancho Santa Fe family with ‘Friends and Family’ award

Rancho Santa Fe resident Jim Peterson, a partner with Higgs Fletcher & Mack, a San Diego-based, full-service law firm for 75 years, and his family were recently named the 2014 Make-A-Wish San Diego’s “Friends and Family” honoree.

The recognition was based on all of their contributions this past year after being introduced to the organization when their daughter, Tina, battled non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

“During her treatment, she was advised that she was eligible to receive a wish from the organization,” said Peterson. “Since Tina is a performer, she asked to go to the Grammys, and in 2013 her wish was granted. In addition, due to her connection to the organization, Tina was asked to sing the National Anthem at the 2011 Poinsettia Bowl to a standing ovation only two months after she finished her treatment. She’s been officially in remission for three years now, and Make-A-Wish was instrumental in her recovery and, frankly, uplifting for our entire family.”

Since that time, Tina has performed the Anthem for Make-A-Wish at a Padres game, at the team luncheon for the Poinsettia Bowl in 2013 and at a recent Make-A-Wish fundraiser called Tuna Challenge. She has also performed several pop songs on stage at the organization’s “Roll Out the Barrel” fundraiser on the Humphrey’s stage in 2013 and 2014 and at the Oceanside Amphitheater for another Make-A-Wish fundraiser last year.

Since then, the entire family has gotten involved in Make-A-Wish. Tina has become an unofficial Make-A-Wish “ambassador” and is an intern in their wish-granting department while studying business and music at San Diego State University. Wife Kim Peterson is a founding member of the organization’s “Wish Circle,” a group of women who have organized to raise money to fund wishes for Make A Wish San Diego. Last April, Jim was elected to the Make-A-Wish Foundation San Diego Board of Directors and is the only “wish parent” doing so. Tina’s older sister, Danielle, also volunteers for the organization as a “wish granter” and in various other capacities.

“The Peterson family embodies giving back, and we’re so fortunate to have them as part of the Make-A-Wish Family,” said Chris Sichel, President and CEO at Make-A-Wish San Diego. “We’re proud to have Tina as one of most active young volunteers. Their story is inspiring and one that gives hope to so many of our wish kids. They are most deserving of this award!”