From Five Acres to Footlighters, All the Good News That's Fit to Print

SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

Among the good people accomplishing good things for good causes in recent weeks:

Audrey Irmas and Harry T. McMahon were honored by Bet Tzedek at its 26th annual dinner. Bet Tzedek, which means "House of Justice" in Hebrew, is a nonprofit law office that defends the indigent, elderly and disabled free of charge. More than $2 million was raised at the Century Plaza Hotel event.

Ray Kurtzman received the Maimonides Touch of Justice Award from the Legal Services Division of the Jewish Federation at its second annual dinner March 14.

UCLA alumni Carol and Jim Collins received the 2000 Honorary Fellow Award at the College of Letters & Science Awards Dinner at the Century Plaza Hotel.

Brad Reaume, Karen Komai Margolis, Liz Stewart, Judith Farrar, Alia Ali and Colleen Nicassio are the dedicated volunteers lauded by Five Acres, an Altadena-based residential center for abused and neglected children.

Kathy Checchi, president of the Trusteeship Board of L.A.'s Best, an after-school enrichment program; Alison Winter, chairwoman of the L.A. Chamber of Commerce; and Jeanne Wolf, television and print journalist, were recognized for their leadership by Pine Manor College at a luncheon hosted by alumnae Wallis Annenberg and Wendi Woods Chandler at the Peninsula Hotel.

One hundred dynamic duffers participated in the USC/Norris Breast Cancer Golf Clinic held at San Gabriel Country Club. Mary Lamb and Lorna Reed were chairwomen of the day, which raised more than $80,000.

Dr. John M. Vierling and Andrew J. Conrad were honored for their research at the first Gala Recognition Dinner "Celebrating Achievement," sponsored by the American Liver Foundation's Greater Los Angeles Chapter. More than 350 guests raised more than $125,000 at the event, at the Beverly Hills Hotel.

Marshall Herskovitz and Edward Zwick, producers of ABC-TV's "Once and Again" weekly drama, received the Anti-Defamation League's Distinguished Entertainment Industry Award at the Century Plaza Hotel.

All-American hoopster Tommy Hawkins received the "Giving New Hope" Award from the Children's Burn Foundation at its fifth annual dinner at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.

Members of SHARE (Share Happily and Reap Endlessly), the Hollywood charity that has supported local causes for more than four decades, donated $1 million to 21 local agencies at the group's annual distribution ceremonies at Paramount Studios.

Rose Gilbert, Palisades High School English teacher, and Vicki Reynolds, mayor-elect of Beverly Hills and a member of the State Board of Education, were honored at the ninth annual Friends of the Fulfillment Fund Spring Luncheon at the Beverly Hills Hotel. Gilbert was named the fund's 1999 outstanding educator. A surprise award was presented to Cherna Gitnick, founder and president of the Friends, the key support group for the Fulfillment Fund, a mentoring program for L.A. youth who demonstrate high potential but lack resources.

Los Angeles Police Department Officers Cynthia French, Misty Goodnight, Ronan Samuels, Andrew Thompson and Sgt. Rob Lerner were honored for their bravery during the shooting at North Valley Jewish Community Center in Granada Hills last summer. Mayor Richard Riordan and LAPD Chief Bernard Parks presented them with Crystal Angel awards during the Los Angeles Police Foundation benefit, at the Greenacres estate in Beverly Hills.

Venerable hoofers Buddy Ebsen and Marge Champion were honored by their peers at the Professional Dancers Society Gypsy Awards at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. A chorus of "boos" from the audience, which included Cyd Charisse, Donald O'Connor, Betty Garrett, Fayard Nicholas, Dick Van Dyke, Miriam Nelson, Tad Tadlock, Janet Leigh, the Savoys, Carol Channing and the Kennedy Tap Co., followed the announcement by society co-chairmen Joni Berry and Bob Sidney that dance numbers had been eliminated from this year's Oscars ceremonies.

Bob Lorsch marked his 50th birthday with a fund-raiser for local charities at the California Science Center, raising $800,000.

Five women were honored by KCET-TV at a luncheon marking Women's History Month: Lillian T. Jeffries, founder of His Sheltering Arms Inc.; Diane Rodriguez, co-director of the Latino Theatre Initiative at the Mark Taper Forum; Agnes Stevens, founder and director of School on Wheels; Dr. Sakaye Shigekawa; and Tessa Carmen De Roy, principal consultant, Urban Resources Inc.

The Luminaires, the premier support group for Doheny Eye Institute, celebrated its 25th anniversary with a black-tie dinner dance at the California Club.

Members of the Footlighters, who have been singing and dancing their hearts out for children's charities in Southern California for 61 years, honored longtime member Sherry Shelley at their annual Cabaret Ball at the Beverly Hilton.

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