Collaboration, cooperation, and a force for change

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The scene at Cipriani Wall Street for the 26th Annual Samuel Waxman Cancer Research Foundation's Collaborating for a Cure Gala.

The 29th Annual Neighborhood Dinner of The New York Women’s Foundation was recently held in Queens to celebrate the diverse cultures in New York City, honoring exceptional women whose courage and leadership have transformed their local communities for women and families.

An inspiring evening for conversation, connections, and action, the event was aptly held on National Philanthropy Day® (NPD), which is one day set aside each year for the purpose of recognizing the great contribution philanthropy makes to our society and to honor individuals, businesses and support organizations that are active in the philanthropic community. From Latin and Greek, philanthropy means “the love of humankind.”

That love and inspiration was palpable in the room last night, where over 150 guests joined together to honor and support these incredible leaders. It was a Neighborhood Dinner that had a strong feeling of warmth and community. There was an embrace of everyone, inspiring honorees and their speeches, delicious food provided by a local, women-owned catering company, and a beautiful performance by the Bangladesh Academy of Fine Arts.

This year the Foundation gave the Neighborhood Leadership Award to Dr. Althea Taylor, the Executive Director of Hour Children, who has done phenomenal work on incarceration reform and in helping women with substance use and mental health disorders who were formally incarcerated and to Carina Kaufman-Gutierrez of Street Vendor Project, who has as worked to pass city and state legislation to reform the street vendor industry and to create a relief fund for excluded workers. Both organizations are The New York Women’s Foundation’s Grantee Partners.

Dr. Althea Taylor.

The Foundation presented the Spirit of Entrepreneurship Award to Yanki Tshering, Founder and Executive Director of Accompany Capital, whose microlending for immigrants and refugee owned micro and small businesses has enriched the community and demonstrated a deep level of commitment to the neighborhood.

Irma Rodriguez.

Additionally, This year Irma Rodriguez was presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award. Irma has dedicated her life and career to the Queens Community House; she served as its Executive Director of the Queens Community House (QCH) from 2008-2015, after serving more than 25 years as Associate Director.

QCH grew from a locally serving community center into a borough-wide organization with 25 sites in 11 neighborhoods, serving 25 ,000 children, families, and older adults. Under Irma’s guidance, QCH developed expertise in organizing, neighborhood preservation, and community building. She has been acknowledged for her efforts to promote human service provision as a vehicle for social change.

The Jack and Dorothy Kupferberg Family Foundation was honored with the inaugural Queens Champion Award for the family’s dedication to the well-being of Queen’s neighborhoods and communities.

Yanki Tshering.

Carina Kaufman-Gutierrez and Soffiyah Elijah.

“We are privileged to recognize the important work of these honorees who are working to make their communities a better place for all,” said Ana L. Oliveira, President and CEO of The New York Women’s Foundation. “Through their work, they are able to shift our consciousness toward justice and equity, which is essential to bring about the progress that our city so desperately needs.”

Jean Shafiroff.

Notable attendees included: Dr. Althea Taylor, Carina Kaufman-Gutierrez, Yanki Tshering, Irma Rodriguez, Ana L. Oliveira, Councilwomen Linda Lee. Executives from Alstom Group and JP Morgan were also present, while Saeeda Dunstan of Elmcor emceed the event.

The 2023 Neighborhood Dinner event chairs include BJ Sung, Elizabeth Wang, Monique Edwards, Michelle Henry, and Gloria Pitagorsky. They were supported on the committee by Antoinette Ahibo, Zoe Bogan, Dexlene Maxwell, and Victoria Morgan.

The New York Women’s Foundation’s mission is to create an equitable and just future for women and families. It achieves this goal by uniting cross-cultural and community alliances that ignite action.

The Foundation invests in women-led, innovative, and bold community-based solutions that promote the economic security, safety, and health of the most underserved women. The Foundation has distributed more than $114 million in its 36-year existence to over 500 organizations, impacting millions of women and girls across New York City and beyond.

To learn more about The New York Women’s Foundation’s work to transform lives, families, and communities, visit

Victoria Chu Pao, Dexlene Maxwell, Elizabeth Wang, Ana L. Oliveira, BJ Sung, and Victoria Morgan.
Irma Rodriguez and Neighborhood dinner guests.

The 26th Annual Samuel Waxman Cancer Research Foundation’s Collaborating for a Cure Gala, one of New York City’s much-anticipated autumn charity events, was held on Thursday, November 16th, 2023, at Cipriani Wall Street.

The annual fundraiser supports more than 60 scientists around the world funded by the Waxman Foundation. Additionally, dollars raised this year will help launch the Foundation’s newest initiative — the SWCRF Mission Possible Grants.

These highly competitive projects will be focused on improving healthy longevity with less risk of cancer as we age. SWCRF plans to add five to six mission possible grantees to its growing, international network in 2024.

Michael Nierenberg and Dr. Samuel Waxman.

“The only way to end cancer as we know it, is by working together,” said Dr. Samuel Waxman. “This has been the SWCRF philosophy since its founding nearly 50 years. It is why our scientists are required to work with other labs, sometimes across oceans, in order to collaborate and speed up the pace of scientific breakthroughs. And it is why events like this gala are so important.”

This year’s event honored artist and humanitarian, Ariela Wertheimer, Guido Campello, co-CEO at Journelle, and first CEO of luxury lingerie brand Cosabella & Dr. Sapna Palep, co-CEO at Journelle, Founder of Spring Street Dermatology, Mt. Sinai Clinical Professor, and CBS New York News Anchor, Chris Wragge.

Valeria Campello, Ugo Campello, Sapna Palep, and Guido Campello.

Notable attendees included: SWCRF Founder and CEO Dr. Samuel Waxman, Marion Waxman, Board Chairman Michael Nierenberg, honorees Ariela Werthiemer, Chris Wragge, Sarah Wragge, Dr. Sapna Palep and Guido Campello, emcee John Elliot, fashion designer Kobi Halperin, Tamir Gilat, Orital Karelic, Bobbie Lloyd, Mark Petraca and Robin Lathrop.

The event was produced by Robin Lathrop of ByRobin Event Management and Design.

The Collaborating for a Cure Gala included both a silent and live auction during the night’s festivities of which one of the highlights was a seven-day stay at a private villa in Tuscany for 18 guests. There are several additional exclusive items available on for public participation until Wednesday, November 29th.

A live performance by Tedeschi Trucks “Fireside Live.”

Known for its history of top-notch live musical guests, this year’s gala was no exception with a special live performance by Tedeschi Trucks “Fireside Live.”

This past year, SWCRF expanded its International Network on Aging and Cancer Research by launching new collaborative research projects with the Mark Foundation for Cancer Research, the Israel Cancer Research Fund, and Albert Einstein Medical College. Events such as the gala and other fundraisers like the Hamptons Happening and Waxman Luncheon make this crucial funding possible.

For more information, visit

L. to r.: Emcee John Elliot; James and Jennifer Rutha, with Sarah and Chris Wragge.
Jonny Nierenberg, Ali Nierenberg, Ellen Nierenberg, and Michael Nierenberg.
L. to r.: Kobi Halperin and Ariela Wertheimer; Ariela Wertheimer and Dr. Samuel Waxman.
Spencer Waxman, Sarah Waxman, Samuel Waxman, Marion Waxman, Scott Waxman, and Julie Waxman.
L. to r.: Dr. Sapna Palep and Guido Campello; Marc Bouwer and Anna Zaiachkivska.
Tamir Gilat, Ariela Wertheimer, Marion Waxman, Kobi Halperin, and Orital Karelic.
Susan Tedeschi, Derek Trucks, and Mike Hamilton.
Brooke Pomerantz, Matthew Siegel, Luke Rizzo, and Lauren Ambos.
Katya Tolstova.

A formal launch reception for the Quadrille Ball was held at 1014 Fifth Avenue to pay tribute to the upcoming 63rd Annual Quadrille Ball, a white tie charity event. The Annual Ball is due to take place on February 24th, 2024, at 583 Park Avenue in New York City.

Notable Attendees included: Irmintraud Jost, JB Kresser, Dr. Barbara Elling, Jean Shafiroff, Sofie Mählkvist, Tijana Ibrahimovic, Paola Bacchini, Keiko Aoki, Nadja Sayej, Eva Maria Marks, Nina Smith, Prof. Dr. Claudia Breger, Paulina Simkin, Dr. Katja Wiesbrock Donovan, Dr. Bill Radin, Matthew Yokobosky, Allison Baroness von Arnim, Dagmar Grimm, Steven Brezzo, Bettina Bennett, Heide Herz, Simone Bye, Radwa Saad, Ahmed Elgammal, Margaret Zawadzka.

Stephanie Wilson, Nick Salcedo, Ella Grace Morgan, Daniel Mazza, Ana Barbu, Lopo Neto, Mary Kate Grohoski, and Dumond Austin.

The gala next February will showcase an elegant night where guests will experience a cocktail reception and a three-course dinner followed by dancing until 4:00 a.m. in the morning! The premier highlight of the evening is the Quadrille performance itself. The elegant Quadrille remains one of the very few white tie events in New York City

The annual ball is a fundraiser for scholarships awarded to highly qualified students enrolled at U.S. or German universities. The Quadrille was founded decades ago to enhance and strengthen transatlantic relationships through education and exchange. Through its non-profit parent organization, the Germanistic Society of America, the Quadrille supports undergraduate, Master and PhD students.

The Quadrille dance itself is performed by young professionals from various nationalities and backgrounds who volunteer their time to rehears during the winter and eventually perform the dance at the Quadrille Ball.

The Quadrille Ball is organized by volunteers to ensure that the tax-deductible contributions from sponsors, advertisers, donors, and ball guests benefit the stipend fund.

Recent Sponsors have included the Full Scholarship Sponsor, The Mejean Family Foundation; Platinum Sponsors Max Kade Foundation, Inc., The Bye Family, and Dr. William Radin; as well as Diamond Sponsors, The Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation and Dr. and Mrs. Andrew Shiva.

L. to r.: Irmintraud Jost and JB Kresser; Tijana Ibrahimovic.
L. to r.: Stephanie Heintzeler and John Vricella; Dr. Barbara Elling.
Paola Bacchini and Keiko Aoki.
L. to r.: Nadja Sayej; Allison M. Ecung.
L. to r.: Katya Donovan; Sofie Mählkvist.
Bill Radin.

Photographs by Shutterstock / Andrew H. Walker (NYWF); BFA / Rupert Ramsay (SWCRF & Quadrille).

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