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Opinion

The Crowd: ‘The Innovators’ turn out for Discovery Cube

Discovery Cube Board member James Ray, Janet M. Ray, ILC Chair, Rick Baily, Discovery Cube Board Chair with Carol Lee.
Discovery Cube board member James Ray, left, with Janet M. Ray, ILC chairwoman, Rick Baily, Discovery Cube board chairman, and Carol Lee attend “The Science of Magic” party benefit at the Pacific Club in Newport Beach.
(Ann Chatillon)

Organizers called it “The Science of Magic.” Discovery Cube’s dedicated supporters came together under the leadership of Chief Executive Joe Adams to mark the 10th anniversary of an auxiliary known as the Innovators. Innovator leadership chairwoman Janet Ray welcomed a crowd of several hundred for wine and light supper at the Pacific Club, Newport Beach.

Formed in 2009, the Innovators raise significant funds for student scholarships in Orange County.

The theme of the Science of Magic presentation featured magician John Guastaferro, a celebrated member of the Hollywood Magic Castle family, who performed and discussed some of history’s more famous magicians.

Spotted at the celebration were Catherine Thyen, Carol Lee, Heidi Miller, Rick Baily, Carole and Del Stagg, and the Youshida family.

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For information, visit discoverycube.org.

Hope and help for Autism

The UC Irvine Center for Autism & Neurodevelopmental Disorders held its fifth annual Hope & Help Gala at the Resort at Pelican Hill, Newport Beach. The sold-out evening in September raised some $400,000 for autism center projects.

Byron Scott
Byron Scott speaking at The UCI Center for Autism & Neurodevelopmental Disorders “Hope & Help” gala raising significant funds for their programs.
(Courtesy of UCI)

Among the special guests was former Laker Byron Scott, a three-time NBA champion, and his fiancée, Cece Gutierrez.

Also front and center was Kodi Lee, a former finalist on “America’s Got Talent.” Lee presented a live musical performance on the piano and gave a heartfelt talk about his experience with autism, bringing the crowd to its feet.

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The exceptional gathering was chaired by Jaril Tudo and Krystine Solomon. Major recognition was paid to the Orange County Trial Lawyers Assn. for its advocacy on behalf of individuals with autism.

Also honored were longtime autism center supporters Chace and Anne Warmington. Funds raised at the gala will support Transition to Adulthood, which was created to help young adults, and other programs.

To learn more, visit thecenter4autism.org.

Everyone needs a Second Chance

The Newport Beach Civic Center welcomed 100 guests in support of Second Chance Orange County, which helps individuals experiencing homelessness recover from drug addiction and alcoholism.

“I started this organization with a very simple premise — fill in the gaps in services that no one else was doing and do it extremely well,” said Executive Director Deb Johnson.

Second Chance Orange County
Second Chance Orange County’s Executive Director Deb Johnson and Mayor Pro Tem of Newport Beach Will O’Neil at recent fundraiser raising significant funds to help recovering addicts and individuals experiencing homelessness, placing them in customized jobs.
(Courtesy of Rebekah Martinek)

Results have been impressive. To date, more than 200 individuals have been successfully transitioned through the group that started in 2015. One hundred percent of them are alive and have not used emergency rooms for drug and alcohol issues. Sixty-seven percent of full-service clients have jobs. Some 98% are not in jail.

In the crowd: Newport Mayor Pro Tem Will O’Neill and Councilman Kevin Muldoon, Huntington Beach Councilwoman Kim Carr Newport Beach Chamber of Commerce President Steve Rosansky.

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To learn more, visit secondchanceoc.org.

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