Connecting Santa to Children's Hospital of Alabama

Birmingham, AL - December 2012 - Even Santa needs some help sometimes getting connected. Partnered with Cisco and Children's of Alabama Child, Presidio helped bring the holidays to children unable to leave the hospital through the Life Cisco Santa Connection program, which allows the children to chat with Santa on iPads from their hospital rooms.

With wide eyes, three-year-old Richard Saulter IV, nicknamed “Brody,” met and chatted with Santa on Tuesday via iPad. Santa, in a white-beard, red suit, and cap, gave Brody a hearty “ho-ho-ho” and asked him what he wanted for Christmas, which Brody emphatically announced was a “choo-choo” train.

Brody has been diagnosed with neuroblastoma, a cancer that can spread throughout the body. He is one of a number of severely ill children at Children's of Alabama who was treated to a video chat with Santa on Tuesday. Other patients who got to have a virtual meeting with Santa included two-year-old Kylen Tolbert, who has undergone surgery, chemotherapy and a bone marrow transplant to treat a cancerous brain tumor, and Khalil Felton, diagnosed with sickle cell anemia and liver cancer, and awaiting his second liver transplant.

Shawn Gennuso, Engineering Manager for Presidio, and Mike Maze, Systems Engineer for Cisco, were onsite to make the "North Pole connection" using Cisco TelePresence technology. Gennuso “dialed the North Pole” and connected Santa with patients such as Brody, Klyen and Khali, just a few of many little ones who will get to experience a little bit of joy during this Holiday season. Children’s of Alabama is one of thirty-plus hospitals across the country that is participating in the Cisco Santa Connection program. The effort is a great example of how Presidio makes it possible for clients such as Children’s, in their initiative of excellent and personal patient care, unlock the extraordinary potential of a completely connected world.