They held the 2022 HeartShare Spring Gala on Monday, March 21st at the Ziegfeld Ballroom. A celebration of the HeartShare Family, the event drew more than 400 HeartShare supporters, board members, corporate sponsors, partners, and celebrities. The Gala was also viewed online by more than 100 virtual attendees.
Co-hosted by Emmy-winning “Good Day New York” host Rosanna Scotto and legendary Q104.3 DJ Jim Kerr — both longtime HeartShare Board Members — the 2022 HeartShare Spring Gala featured remarks by President and CEO Bill Guarinello and Board Chair Paul J. Torre and honored the achievements of three caring and compassionate individuals committed to helping people with autism and other developmental disabilities live their best lives.
Cynthia McFadden, Senior Legal and Investigative Correspondent, NBC News, was the recipient of the Heart of a Champion Award. She was introduced by 13-time Emmy winner, “60 Minutes” correspondent Lesley Stahl. Michael W. Castellano, co-owner of Staten Island’s Supreme Italian Market, accepted the Catherine White Achievement Award. Douglas P. Catalano, Esq., partner with Clifton Budd & DeMaria, was recipient of the HeartShare Visionary Award.
VIPs in attendance, in addition to Rosanna Scotto, Jim Kerr, Cynthia McFadden and Lesley Stahl, included: Linda Dano, Ines Rosales, Mike Woods, Jeff Marchetti, Dan Grimaldi, Harry Lennix, Maysoon Zayid, Niko Koutouvides, Stephen Schnetzer, Gina Naomi Baez, Sam Carrell, along with Tinkerbelle the Dog and Belle the Dog.
HeartShare board members attending the gala in-person included: Rosanna Scotto, Jim Kerr, Arleen Baez, Paul J. Torre, Joseph R. Benfante, Esq., Angelo J. Del Giudice, Craig A. Eaton, Esq., Peter E. Pisapia, Esq., Frank J. Maresca, Joseph A. Malone, Renee V. McClure, and Michael W. Castellano. Board members attending the gala via the virtual gala option included: Christine E. Strehle, Dr. Raymond J. Mollica, DPM, Matthew Lipsky, Christopher G. Jones, and Rev. Patrick S. Flanagan, C.M.
Founded in 1914, HeartShare is New York’s premier nonprofit dedicated to New York’s most vulnerable, empowering individuals with autism and other developmental disabilities to reach their full potential through education, life skills and vocational training, as well as residential, recreational, family support and long-term therapy services.
The third time was the charm for the Palm Beach Police & Fire Foundation, which held its annual Palm Beach Policemen’s & Firefighters’ Ball on March 19, 2022 and raised more than $2 million after two pandemic-related postponements.
The Mar-a-Lago Club set the scene for the sold-out, black-tie gala. Event Chairs Monika and John Preston; Honorary Chairs Linda Gary and Michael Belisle, and Palm Tree Award recipients, Annie and Michael Falk, headlined the event. Tom Mathieu & Co created the spectacular Crystal Ball décor design.
The event began with a poolside cocktail reception, then guests went to Grand Ballroom, where Foundation Co-founder and President Tim Moran announced the program that began with Palm Beach Pipes & Drums and the Presentation of the Colors by the Palm Beach Police and Fire Departments’ Honor Guards. Mr. Moran and John F. Scarpa, the Foundation’s CEO, Chairman and Co-founder welcomed the guests, and introduced a surprise guest, former President Donald Trump, who gave words of welcome, and praise to the town’s public safety workers.
Afterwards, Mr. Scarpa introduced the Prestons, who presented the annual Palm Tree Award to Annie and Michael Falk. Then Vice President David Mack, First Vice President Michael Belisle, Palm Beach Police Chief Caristo, and Division Chief Sean Baker joined on stage for the Police Officer and Firefighter of the Year Award Presentations.
Officer Gabrio Badolatti won Police Officer of the Year Award, sponsored by Devon and Tom Roush. Firefighter of the Year Award winner was Lt. Kristen Ruest, sponsored by Janet and Mark Levy. The inaugural People’s Choice Police Officer and Firefighter Awards were presented to Officer Tom Machate and Chief Sean Baker, respectively.
Bill Bone conducted the live auction. Then Mr. Moran made a surprise announcement that Michael Belisle and Linda Gary granted the Foundation a $1 million gift. Guests were spellbound by an aerial acrobatic performance by Eye on Events, and The Danny Beck Band kept the crowd dancing until the party was over.
All proceeds raised remain in Palm Beach and benefit the Palm Beach Police and Fire Rescue Departments. Event sponsors included The Palm Beach Police & Fire Foundation, Inc., Palm Beach Illustrated, Lugano Diamonds, Devon and Tom Roush, and Mark and Janet Levy.
And over on the West Coast at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Orange Country CA, Elizabeth Segerstrom, Jane Fujishige Yada, and Betty Huang recently hosted a very special evening with Lang Lang.
An exquisite dinner and a private concert for just 130 guests announced a new partnership between Lang Lang International Music Foundation and Elizabeth and Henry Segerstrom Foundation, the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, and their resident companies, the Pacific Symphony, Pacific Chorale, and Philharmonic Society of Orange County. Over the next 12 month Lang Lang’s foundation will create five new piano labs for schools in Costa Mesa and Garden Grove, expanding the following year to at least nine schools and over 4,000 children in La Habra, Anaheim, Santa Ana, Garden Grove, and Costa Mesa, California.
Elizabeth Segerstrom spoke from her heart recalling how she and her husband presented Lang Lang for the first time in Orange County and the close friendship that has grown between them. It was a touching tribute to her late husband and their joint commitment to musical culture. The chair of the Segerstrom Center for the Arts Jane Yada, and the Director of the Board of the Segerstrom Center for the Arts Betty Huang stood beside Elizabeth Segerstrom as she received alcaldes from Lang Lang and the president of his foundation, Lukas Barwinski-Brown.
Lang Lang’s performance included a four-hand duet with his wife, Gina Alice. Guests included Yue Sai Kan who flew in from her Hawaii home as well as Lang Lang’s parents.
The evening was a precursor for the coming Lang Lang International Music Foundation Gala in New York September 21st chaired by John Paulson and Amanda Taylor.
For more information see: https://langlangfoundation.org/news/2022-gala-celebration/
Photographs by Monica Schipper/Getty (HeartShare); Capehart (Palm Beach Police & Fire Foundation).