Senior Care Network Thanks Anderson

Times Staff Writer

A corporation is a "reflection of the man at the helm," and that was why "ROA" (as Robert O. Anderson, chairman of Atlantic Richfield, is known to friends and employees) got a big black-tie thank you from prominent Long Beach residents interested in the aged at the Hyatt Regency.

U.S. Sen. Pete Wilson (R-Calif.) and his vivacious wife, Gayle, flew out from Washington to be special guests at the request of Noel Gould and Melva Miller, past president and president of SCAN (Senior Care Action Network) Foundation. Wilson was tapped as keynote speaker because he started and pushed the SCAN Health Plan (a social/health maintenance organization), now in a pilot stage in Long Beach and Portland, Me., and two other cities. Arco and the Bank of America contributed about $5 million to put the program on track.

Said Wilson: "You get old because you are wrongly forced to give up things that you should not . . . living in your own home, going to your own doctor, going to the grocery store around the corner, going to your neighborhood church or synagogue."

Said Anderson: "Pete did the legislation to make it all happen," referring to the program that combines Medicare and Medicaid money and low premiums paid by members 65 or older.

The double dais included dinner co-chairmen Joseph A. Ball, Edwin Bechler, Michael Choppin, Marvin Haney, Allan R. Ide, Daniel Ridder (and his wife, Frani), Debby Shey, Larry Bonzer, Hiram Bond and Rudy Munzer. And prominent in the audience were Dr. James Serles, chairman of the SCAN Health Plan; Sally Brant, Marty Wilson and Otto Bos of Pete Wilson's staff; the Kenneth G. Walkers (he's a banker who plays polo); the James A. Worshams; Supervisor Deane Dana; and Ted and Helen Roelfsema.

Glamorous in a red chiffon tiered gown, Gayle Wilson earlier in the day had lunched on Cobb salad at Francisco's in the Arco towers, wearing her Senate Wives pin (a birthday present; the first one was stolen from a hotel room).

The next day she was prepping for her "reverse news conference" before the California Newspaper Publishers Assn. in San Francisco. There, she, Assemblywoman Maxine Waters (D-Los Angeles), Sandra Farha, president of California NOW, and Dolores Huerta, vice president of the United Farm Workers Union, put publishers and editors including Frank McCulloch (Sacramento Bee) and Ignacio Lazano (La Opinion) on the line.

Then, while the senator attended the Republican Party convention in San Francisco, met with Jewish leaders, and spoke to the Lincoln Club at the California Club, she spent some time in San Diego with the intent to work with her good friends Jean Chapman and Toni Michetti on the script for "The Party's Not Over," the political roast in San Francisco next month where the senator's expected to do a song and dance (Dianne Feinstein, Gov. George Deukmejian and Willie Brown perform, too). Mort Sahl is emcee.

A Phi Beta Kappa at Stanford, Gayle Wilson's big interest is mental illness, particularly Alzheimer's disease. She was in charge of arrangements for Tuesday's seminar for Senate Wives featuring two Johns Hopkins doctors speaking on the disease.

"My particular interest is the family," she said. "The whole family is affected emotionally by this disease. I'm not going to lobby government to give more money, but we need to be aware of the devastating effects." Along with Jane Denton and Nancy Domenici, wives of senators from Alabama and New Mexico, she's become involved with the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill in Washington.

Donna E. Shalala, president of Hunter College of the City University of New York, flew in to keynote the Hunter College Alumni Assn. 115th birthday celebration luncheon Saturday at the Toluca Lake Tennis Club.

Actress Victoria Principal hosted the kick-off party for Group Effort's sixth annual auction Saturday afternoon at Chaya Brasserie Restaurant. The affair called for "high tea" with scones, warm strudel, tea cakes, caramel custards and fresh fruit.

Nonprofit Group Effort aids Cedars-Sinai Diabetes Unit, the Arthritis Foundation, Leukemia Society of America and Loyola Marymount University.

The benefit comes April 20 at the Beverly Wilshire. Bob Abell will conduct an auction.

The Parents Guild of Louisville High School in Woodland Hills presented the "Mad Hatter's Tea Party" on Saturday, a mother-daughter fashion show and luncheon at the Universal Sheraton Grande Ballroom with fashions from Nordstrom.

Chad Everett was master of ceremonies.

The Opera Buffs Inc. staged what was billed as "a most unusual concert" Friday evening at Vari McCormac's mansion, once purchased by John G. Bullock (of the department store) as a gift for his daughter.

Thomas Hampson, accompanied by Armen Guzelimian, sang both operatic arias and songs of George Gershwin and Cole Porter for a bit of fund raising.

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