Ron Perelman, Penny Marshall,
and Ellen Barkin.
Bigger Than Ever
OW is it possible to hold an event, that is strictly SRO, and raise $2.3 million dollars, in the small but elegant grand ballroom of the Plaza Hotel? Impossible, unless you have Sharyn Mann, Todd Slotkin, the most dedicated board of directors, and a powerhouse gala committee on your team.
This was the fourth year for the Food Allergy Initiative gala, and it was bigger than ever.
Daniel Boulud, was this year's honoree for the Joe Baum Lifetime Achievement Award. The announcement was made a couple of days before Boulud was named the city's No.1 Chef, and his namesake restaurant Daniel was chosen No.1 in the city.
The previous Baum winners came to celebrate their confrere. They included Drew Nieporent, Alex von Bidder and Julian Niccolini, and Sirio Maccioni. Dr. Patricia Cayne was honored for her pioneering research work and dedication to causes way beyond her medical expertise.
Broadway's Patti LuPone brought the audience to tears with her emotional rendition of her No. One show-stopping hit, Don't Cry for Me Argentina. Actor, producer, director sister/brother team of Penny Marshall and Garry Marshall had the audience in stitches for their presentation.
Garry, a lifelong sufferer of food allergies, which caused him great distress in his childhood, accepted the first Award named for him by video.
Alex von Bidder and
Drew Nieporent present award to
Sister Penny was there to pick up the award in person. She told the audience she was there because she had the cast iron stomach, but brother Garry had always been sickly as a child.
Garry did a take on what he could and couldn't eat, and once they'd figured out what foods could kill him, he stayed away from them. After all, "dying is bad for you!"
Mary Richardson and Robert Kennedy Jr., led a star studded Gala Committee with Ronald Perelman (chairman of Revlon) and actress wife Ellen Barkin supplying the glamour. It was a magical evening, and one enjoyed by the 600 guests squeezed in tight but happily in the grand ballroom.
Have a fabulous holiday season, and may God (of any and every belief) grant Peace on Earth to all people of good will.