Friday, May 22, 2015

El Museo del Barrio, Fountain House, Empowers Africa, and Gray Matters

El Museo del Barrio's annual spring Gala at The Plaza Hotel.
El Museo del Barrio's sold out annual spring Gala was held on Thursday, May 14th at The Plaza Hotel. Board member Yolanda Santos was presented with the Joseph A. Unanue Trustee Leadership Award by long-time friend Marifé Hernández; Senior Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer at Time Warner Inc., Lisa Garcia Quiroz, received the Corporate Excellence in the Arts Awards presented by Lin-Manuel Miranda; and the Founder and President of Fundación Jumex Arte Contemporáneo, Eugenio López Alonso, was honored with the Excellence in the Arts Award presented by Jane Holzer.

Christofle again generously donated the three silver awards for the Gala. Cocktails, including specialty tequila concoctions, began at 7pm in the Terrace Room. Dinner and dancing to music by Avenida B followed at 8pm in the Grand Ballroom. This year's Gala borrowed its aesthetic themes from El Museo´s current exhibition, which explores the work and legacy of Mexican cinematographer, Gabriel Figueroa. The event was designed by Jeronimo Gaxiola and featured a multidisciplinary performance by Erika Harrsch in collaboration with singer Magos Herrera. An emotional appeal was led by Sotheby's Gabriela Palmieri. The Gala raised $1 million dollars for the museum.
Yolanda Santos, Eugenio Lopez Alonso, and Lisa Garcia Quiroz
Maria Eugenia Maury who, with her husband William A. Haseltine, chaired the Gala. Maria Eugenia wore a Giorgio Armani, black label black satin evening gown with Swarovski crystal embroidery applique and a Prive black fishnet mantilla with giant black patent paillettes.

The Young Gala Committee Chairs included Jamie Diamond, Karla Farach de Athanasopoulos, Jessica Garza-Bueron, Karina Palma, Jana Pasquel de Shapiro, and Leticia Pittman Presutti.

The Honorary Committee included Pedro Almodóvar, Miguel Bosé, Maria Cornejo, Ambassador Sandra Fuentes (Consul General of Mexico), Erika Harrsch, Magos Herrera, Ambassador and Mrs. Jorge Montaño (Permanent Representative of Mexico to the United Nations), Dascha Polanco, Candy Pratts Price, Narciso Rodriguez, Andres Serrano, Maricruz and Ray Smith, Isabel and Ruben Toledo, and Iké Udé.
William A Haseltine, Maria Eugenia Maury, and Tony Bechara
El Museo del Barrio, the nation's leading Latin American museum, is known for its wide-ranging collections, groundbreaking exhibitions, complemented by film, literary, visual and performing arts series, cultural celebrations, and educational programs.

This spring the museum showcases Mexican art and culture in grand cinematic style. The central event of this celebration is the exhibition "UNDER THE MEXICAN SKY: Gabriel Figueroa—Art and Film," which explores the work and legacy of Mexican cinematographer, Gabriel Figueroa, one of the most renowned cinematographers of the 20th Century. Figueroa worked both in Mexico and Hollywood during the Golden Age of Cinema and built an enduring image of Mexico though his visionary style. El Museo's Spring Gala borrowed its aesthetic themes from the exhibition, which is on view now through June 27, 2015.
Ben Rodriguez Cubenas, Jackie Weld Drake, Adrienne Vittadini, Gigi Vittadini, and Daisy Soros
The Gala was Black Tie. Inspired by Figueroa's black and white work, ladies were asked to dress in black and white with gloves and veils. The Official Milliner of the Gala was hat designer Patricia Underwood, who has designed numerous veils and custom-order veils for ladies the Gala. Patricia designed a special veil for actress Dascha Polanco, whose gown was by Badgley Mischka.

The Gala is El Museo's single most important fundraising event of the year. This event brought together luminaries from the worlds of fashion, entertainment, business, society, politics, and the arts. Each year it raises essential support for the Museum's critically acclaimed exhibitions and valued public and educational programs. Funds raised at the Gala enable El Museo to continue their important work and keep expanding the scope of their reach.
Mariachi Real de Mexico
Avenida B performing
Guests dined on an heirloom tomato and burrata salad with mozzarella mousse, followed by grilled filet mignon with Dancing Ewe's blue potato gratin, morel ragout, asparagus, English peas, and caramelized onions, and a dessert of 5 texture chocolate cake, devils food cake with milk chocolate mousse and chocolate Macaroon, and mango frozen soufflé with passion fruit broth, seasoned fresh fruit salad, and vanilla pink peppercorn "pocky."

Guests attending included Luis Medina Abascal (Grandee of Spain, and brand ambassador for Dolce Gabbana), Carolina Alvarez-Mathies, Cheryl Anhava, Tony Bechara, Barbara Berger (Jeweler), Violaine and John Bernbach, Maria Cornejo, Laura and John Desmarais, Valdislav Dornin, Jacqueline Weld Drake, Anita Durst, Ambassador Sandra Fuentes (Consul General of Mexico), Council Member Julissa Ferreras, Commissioner Tom Finkelpearl, Dayssi Olarte de Kanavos and Paul Kanavos, Ambassador Jorge Montaño (Permanent Representative of Mexico to the United Nations), Enrique Norten, Council Member Annabel Palma, Florence Peyrelongue, Congressman Pedro Pierluisi, Dascha Polanco (Orange Is The New Black), Assembly Member Robert Rodriguez, Rodolfo de Rothschild, Julian Schnabel, Andrew Solomon, Maurice Sonnenberg, Andres Serrano, Jean Shafiroff, Jana Pasquel and Adam Shapiro, Maricruz and Ray Smith, Daisy Soros, Deputy Commissioner Edwin Torres, Adrienne and Gianluigi Vittadini, Carmen Ana Unanue, and many more.
Ambassador Sandra Fuentes and Jorge Daniel Veneciano
Andrew Mendelson and Jessica Rotman
Ben Rodriguez Cubenas and Jackie Weld Drake
Dascha Polanco
Jana Pasquel de Shapiro and Siddharth Kasliwal
Astrid Soto and Simon Vargas
Catalina Meduna and Elizabeth Mellgard
Luis Medina Abascal, Ernesto Mathies, Carolina Alvarez-Mathies, and Rodner Figueroa
Cecilia Montero, Maria Luisa Ferre, and Alain de Grelle
Dascha Polanco and Jorge Daniel Veneciano
Cristina Arsuaga, Michael Bruno, and Carmen Unanue
Jean Shafiroff, Alexandra Seegers, and Evelyn Gutierrez Subramaniam
Ricci Taylor and Julio Cabral
Francisco and Marie Brugueras
Maria Eugenia Maury and Agatha Ruíz de la Prada
Vanessa Grout
John Bernbach and Violaine Bernbach
Karla Farach and Jamie Diamond
Leticia Presutti, Rick Presutti, Karina Palma, Pedro Palma, and Jana Pasquel
Jeanette Baez and Franciso Gonzalez
Marife Hernandez and Yolanda Santos
Karla Farach, Jana Pasqual, Jamie Diamond, Jessica Garza-Bueron Karina Palma, and Letizia Presoutti
Jana Pasquel de Shapiro, Jessica Garza-Bueron, and Leticia Presutti
Lisa Garcia Quiroz and Lin-Manuel Miranda
Luis Medina Abascal, Maria Eugenia Maury, Bill Haseltine, and Rodner Figueroa
Raul Suarez and Gabriela Palmieri
Michael Heller and Victoria Heller
Clarice Oliveira Tavares and Tony Bechara
Valeria Vazquez and Maricela Vazquez
Tony Bechara and Clarice Oliveira Tavares
Yolanda Santos, Eugenio Lopez Alonso, and Lisa Garcia Quiroz
Tony Bechara and Yolanda Santos
On Monday, May 4, Fountain House raised over one million dollars at its annual Symposium and Luncheon. Titled "Challenges and Possibilities: New Research on Schizophrenia," the event took place in the Grand Ballroom of The Pierre, where more than 500 guests gathered in support of Fountain House, winner of the 2014 Conrad N. Hilton Humanitarian Prize. Fountain House is the first mental health organization to be honored with this, the world's largest and most prestigious humanitarian award.

The attendees who convened at The Pierre on this afternoon were on hand to learn cutting-edge information, geared to a lay audience, from the frontlines of mental health research, treatment and public policy. The panel, comprising three preeminent physicians in the field of schizophrenia, illuminated not only the challenges of living with this serious mental illness but also the possibilities for recovery.
Alexandra Herzan, Patricia Begley, Anne Mai, Carolyn MacKenzie, Kitty de Chazal, Ilyse Wilpon, and Podie Lynch
The distinguished panelists were: Nancy C. Andreasen, MD, PhD, a recipient of the President's National Medal of Science, who is Andrew H. Woods Chair of Psychiatry and Director of the Iowa Neuroimaging Consortium at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine; John M. Kane, MD, Senior Vice President of Behavioral Health Services at the North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System and Professor and Chairman of Psychiatry at the Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine, who directs the Advanced Center for Interventions and Services Research in Schizophrenia at the Zucker Hillside Hospital; and Peter J. Weiden, MD, Professor of  Psychiatry at the University of Illinois Medical Center in Chicago and Chief Medical Officer of Uptown Research, Inc., whose research has focused on bridging psychopharmacology and public health in the treatment of schizophrenia. Consuelo Mack, Managing Editor and Anchor of Consuelo Mack WealthTrack, was the engaging and engaged master of ceremonies.
Lorna Hyde Graev, Kenn Dudek, Dr. John Kane, Dr. Nancy Andreasen, Dr. Peter Weiden, Hawley Hilton McAuliffe, and Dr. Ralph Aquila
Hawley Hilton McAuliffe, Director of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, graciously addressed the assembled guests. In announcing the recipient of the 2014 Hilton Prize last July, the Foundation cited Fountain House/Clubhouse International as a "pioneering organization that has created a proven model to help those suffering from mental illness reclaim their lives and realize their potential through work and the support of a caring community."

Fountain House, founded in 1948 in New York City, has inspired the creation of hundreds of similar programs in 32 countries that serve more than 100,000 people annually. And each year, more than 1,300 members come to Fountain House's home base on West 47th Street to contribute their talents, learn new skills, access opportunities and forge friendships.
Debbie Bancroft, Kari Tiedemann, Ann Barish, Karin Wyser-Pratte, and Barbara Anderson Terry
Fountain House member Betty Eastland candidly and movingly spoke to the gathering about the struggles she had faced on her journey to recovery from mental illness. Her eloquent personal account brought the energy in the room to an exhilarating and inspiring high.

The Fountain House Symposium and Luncheon was founded by Lorna Hyde Graev and Lynn Nicholas, PsyD, to advance community knowledge about mental illness and to reduce the associated stigma. Funds raised support Fountain House's innovative programs in areas including employment, education, housing, and wellness.

The dedicated Chairs who worked tirelessly to ensure this event's success were: Patricia Begley, Kitty de Chazal, Alexandra A. Herzan, Podie Lynch, Carolyn B. MacKenzie, Anne Mai, and Ilyse Wilpon. Camille Tibaldeo served as Program Chair.

To learn more about Fountain House, visit:
Alexandra Herzan, Lorna Hyde Graev, Patricia Begley, and Lynn Nicholas
Kenn Dudek, Hawley Hilton McAuliffe, and Lorna Hyde Graev
Jim Torrey and Missie Rennie Taylor
Patricia Begley and Barry Osborn
Regina Jones, Deborah Goldberg, and Carrie Artzi
Ann Rapp
Karin Wyser-Pratt and Kari Tiedermann
Michele Gerber Klein
Ines Elskop, Christopher Scholz, and Florence Peyrelongue
Sydney Shuman and Jackie Astor Drexel
Rebecca de Kertanguy and Susan Braddock
David Sherrill, Mary-Alice Sherril, and Bill Bartholomay
Gene Williams, Jackie Williams, Debbie Bancroft, and Mark Gilbertson
Willem de Vogel, Marion de Vogel, and Jim Torrey
Andi Wellman, Alexandra Kasmin, and Patricia Braga
Isabella Jasinowski and Susan Firestone
Bettina Zilkha
Charles Revson, Diana Revson, and Larry Graev
Guy de Chazal and Averil Meyer
Dee De Ganay and Liz Peek
Karen Klopp, Sydney Shuman, and Marianna Baker
Jean Shafiroff and Regina Greeven
Emilia Fanjul and Fernanda Kellogg
Nicole Miller
Courtney Allinson Arnot and Nathalie Gerschel Kaplan
Mariana Kaufman
Podie Lynch and Jill Woolworth
World-renowned researcher and National Institute on Drug Abuse Director Nora Volkow, MD, joined author and journalist Ana Marie Cox on April 29th at the Gray Matters at Columbia Spring Benefit Luncheon at The Plaza Hotel. The nearly 400 guests surpassed last year's fundraising effort, raising $590,000.

Each year, Gray Matters at Columbia honors an individual who has made significant contributions to promote brain research on mental illness. Dr. Volkow pioneered the use of brain imaging to investigate the toxic effects and addictive properties of drugs of abuse. Ms. Cox, who was this year's special guest speaker spoke movingly about the struggles of addiction and inspired the audience with her touching remarks. Past honorees at the Spring Benefit Luncheon include Glenn Close, Andrew Solomon, Gwyneth Paltrow, Congressman Patrick Kennedy, Paula Zahn, Anne Ford and Jane Pauley.
Plaza Grand Ballroom
Jeffrey Lieberman, MD, chairman of psychiatry at Columbia University Medical Center, noted, "Research continues to be critical in advancing the development of life-saving treatments for psychiatric disorders. Support from families and committed citizens is more important than ever given the economic pressures and reductions in funding that researchers face."

Funds raised by the luncheon support research fellowships to help young scientists pursuing brain research to help solve the mystery of serious mental illnesses like schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression and autism. The chosen fellows benefit from the multidisciplinary expertise of a peerless team of clinicians and scientists that includes two Nobel laureates.
Cathleen Collins, Ginny Millhiser, Monica Volstad, and Martha Ayres
Patricia Ramonas, Elena Patterson, Mary Elliott, Cathleen Collins, Rosemarie Lieberman, and Ginny Millhiser
Linda Coleman, Kathleen Ambrosiano, Patricia Ramonas, Jeanine Ramonas, Andrea McNulty, and Claire Renga
The 2014-15 Gray Matters Fellows are Guillermo Horga, MD (Schizophrenia), Kathleen Taylor, PhD (Schizophrenia), Sander Markx, MD (Autism, Schizophrenia), Diana Martinez, MD (Addiction), Marisa Spann, PhD, MPH (Prenatal Epidemiology, Infant Brain and Cognition, Early Childhood Mental Health).

Columbia University Medical Center provides international leadership in pre-clinical and clinical research, in medical and health sciences education, and in patient care. The medical center trains future leaders and includes the dedicated work of many physicians, scientists, nurses, dentists, and public health professionals at the College of Physicians & Surgeons, the College of Dental Medicine, the School of Nursing, the Mailman School of Public Health, the biomedical departments of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and allied research centers and institutions. For more information, visit
Elena Patterson, Steve Rosenfeld, and Lori Rosenfeld
Audrey Gruss, Barbara Bancroft, and Dr. Steven Roose
Dr. Nora Volkow, Dr. Jeffrey Lieberman, Ana Marie Cox, and Donna Hanover
Lexie Potamkin, Dr. Brigitt Rok, and Dr. Marie Dezelic
Donna Hanover, Ana Marie Cox, Dr. Jeffrey A. Lieberman, Bill Ramonas, Patricia Ramonas, and Rosemarie Lieberman
Jane Bernick, Maureen Bone, Dr. Estelle Bender, and Dr. Cheryl Corcoran
Suelyn Farel, Katy Briger, Dr. Jeffrey A. Lieberman, and Sally Fenton
Pat Shifke, Donna Hanover, Matilda Cuomo, Rosemarie Lieberman, and Susan Kessler
Jonathan Moinian, Stephanie Moinian, Erit Cohen, and Farah Moinian
Barbara Cates, Annabelle Mariaca, and Louisa Benton
Tracy Franks, Patsy Kahn, and Cassidy Kahn
Anna Maud Chapman, Andrew Solomon, and Betsy Fitelson
Dr. Jeffrey A. Lieberman and Dana Buchman
Leonardo Farkas and Betina Farkas
Mela Garber, Annette Swanstrom, Patsy Kahn, Cassidy Kahn, and Joyce Hanly
Sara Long, Dr. Jeffrey A. Lieberman, Margie Furniss, and Aspasia Zoumas
Drs. Anke Ehrhardt, Nora Volkow, and Herbert Kleber
Sandra Roe and Bo Bartlett
Patricia Rosenwald and Beatrice Tusiani
John Habich and Arlyn Gardner
Karen Hsu, Susan Kessler, and Pat Shifke
Jennifer Weis Monsky and Pat Shifke
Matilda Cuomo and Sharon Bush
John Habich and Sarah Long
Empowers Africa, a non-profit foundation based in the United States that supports programs on the ground in Sub-saharan Africa, held its annual gala dinner at The Explorers Club. The event raised over $150,000 for human empowerment and wildlife protection in Africa. Master of Ceremonies for the evening was Richard Wiese, Host and Producer of ABC series "Born to Explore". The Auctioneer was Eliza Osborne, Executive Director at the Centre Pompidou Foundation. Guests included: Beth Rudin DeWoody, Dennis Basso, Nina Griscom, Chris Mack, Jenny Kennedy, Sandra Ripert and Jennifer Creel.
Elephant sculptures in grass boxes were auctioned off to support Big Life Foundation's anti-poaching efforts
The auction consisted of prints by Firooz Zahedi and Andy Biggs and exotic trips to Botswana, Uganda, South Africa, Rwanda, Chad and Zimbabwe.
The organization is honored Global Witness and its co-founding Directors Patrick Alley, Charmian Gooch & Simon Taylor — winners of the 2014 Ted Prize and the 2014 Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship. Global Witness. Their work includes investigating and documenting environmental crimes depicted in 2006 blockbuster Blood Diamond and the 2015 Academy Award Nominee for Best Documentary Feature Virunga. 100% of the proceeds from the event will be granted to wildlife protection and human empowerment projects in Africa.

Empowers Africa is a 501(c)(3) that focuses on funding programs in communities that surround protected conservation and wildlife areas or World Heritage sites; programs in urban communities where tourism is a strong source of development; and programs that support the protection of wildlife and land conservation. Visit the organization's website at
Krista Krieger, Nicci Wiese, and Dr. Karl Krieger
Nick De Plessis and Consul Bernard Legodi
Sharon Bush
Leonel Piraino and Patricia Glass
Asa Abdullah and Krista Krieger
Greg Lederle, Nina Griscom, and Jennifer Kennedy
Ilona Quasha, Alan Quasha, Allison Shigo, and Anthony Sheriff
Paola Rosenshein, Karen Klopp, and Mary Judelson
Andy Biggs and Kathryn Maier
Nancy Moon and Ann Marie Cushing
Dana Macy, Andy King, and Bonnie Lynn Pfeifer Evans
Dovile Drizyte and Susan Shin
Krista Krieger, Josh O'Connell, and Michele Gradin
Jennifer Creel and Dayssi Olarte De Kanavos
Frances Schultz, Laura Nicklas, Nina Griscom, and Lucia Hwong Gordon
Ian Snow, Mary Snow, Jennifer Kennedy, and Dayssi Olarte De Kanavos
Laura Nicklas and Brent Nicholas
Allison Shigo, Steve Wilson, and Liz Kelly
Andy King and Dana Macy
Lauren Day Roberts and Tina Storper
Roy Judelson, Mary Judelson, and Jeff Craig
Michael Cominotto, Karen Klopp, Dennis Basso, and Mary Snow
Photographs by Patrick McMullan (El Museo); Eve Vagg/Bruce Gilbert (Grey Matters); Annie Watt (Empowers Africa).