On the Town: 'Bras for a Cause' an uplifting event

Bras, bras and more bras were the order of the evening on Saturday. More than 300 supporters packed a ballroom in the Hilton.

The Glendale Soroptimists offered that special uplift for their 10th annual "Bras for a Cause." This year's theme was "A Decade of Giving." The evening's proceeds, as in past years, will be given to the breast cancer services departments of Glendale's three hospitals — Verdugo Hills, Glendale Memorial and Glendale Adventist.

Soroptimist President Gayle Craig kicked off the program after a reception allowing guests to view and bid on the decorated bras — each of which were in the running for a Bra Award. All bras are decorated by anyone with a passion for bras and a desire to support the cancer community.

Event emcee former Glendale Mayor and current City Council member Laura Friedman welcomed the crowd. Friedman is a breast cancer survivor. Among honorees was Kathy Lefkovits, who dreamed up the imaginative and moneymaking bra concept 10 years ago.

The Soroptimists' 70th anniversary serving Glendale was also recognized. Lynne Raggio and Craig did the honors.

An evening would not be complete without the Zarian twins, sons of the late former Glendale Mayor Larry Zarian. As auctioneers, Gregory and Lawrence Zarian didn't miss a trick collecting any extra dollar that could be had. The boys wheedled and cajoled their audience into higher bids. But bargains were still to be had. A week in a Hawaiian condo donated by Dr. Carol Ann Burton went for $800. It was won by Heal Within's Liza Boubari.

The evening of fun-raising came to a gravity-defying end with the Bra Awards, each bra being duly considered by a trio of judges. News-Press columnist Joyce Rudolph led the pack. "The Most Creative Use of a Bra" Award went to "Jerry Bust"—with bra cups filled with basketballs towering over a torso covered in white netting, straight from the basketball court. The bra was created by and sponsored by the Los Angeles Cancer Network.

Funds raised will go to Soroptimist philanthropies including the hospitals, the Glendale YWCA and the Glendale Commission on the Status of Women.

"Reaching New Heights through Artistry, Music and Dance." That was the lofty theme of the Gala 2013 of the Glendale Adventist Medical Center. The Dolby Ballroom at Hollywood Boulevard and Highland Avenue was the venue on April 14.

Although plenty of entertainment was on tap, it was the honorees that took center stage. Glendale residents Michael and Lynette Davis received the Georgia Abelmann Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Community. Michael Davis is the president and owner of H.L. Moe Co., Inc. plumbing contractors. Sons Adam Davis and Taylor Davis and daughter Chelsea Davis joined their parents at the festivities.

Also honored were Onnik and Armenouhi Mehrabian. They received the Erwin J. Remboldt Founder's Award for Outstanding Individual Philanthropy. The Mehrabians are major donors and support Glendale Adventist's Oncology Department.

Two companies were also honored. Hutchinson and Bloodgood LLP was recognized with the Frank F. Dupper Award for Outstanding Corporate Philanthropy. Glendale Pathology Associates was honored with the Spirit of Life Award for Outstanding Physician Philanthropy.

Event Chairs Annette Ermshar and Silva Hameline welcomed exactly 599 supporters present. Glendale Adventist President/CEO Kevin Roberts then took the podium to offer the blessing.

Table 50 included table sponsors Glendale residents Sandy and Doug Schultz, their son, Scott Schultz, and his daughter, Kristin Schultz, 17. Sandy is a member of the hospital's governing board and the hospital foundation. Glendale resident Cassandra Kreps also graced Table 50. Kreps is the fundraising chairman of Glendale Soroptimists.

Kudos must be given to the gal who ran the show, Gayle Craig. Craig is the hospital's manager of Annual Giving and Special Events. She is also Soroptomist President.

The evening's gross proceeds of $500,000 will support the hospital's Women and Children's Services. Funds will allow the purchase of Panda Warmers for the Labor and Delivery Unit.

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RUTH SOWBY may be reached at ruthasowby@gmail.com.

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