Location: James Burden Mansion, New York, NY 10128
CSF Night of Light Children's Gala Raises Over Half a Million!
2011 CSF Night of Light Children's Gala Photo Albumand Video
"It was such an honor for me to be included in the CSF events this past weekend in New York. The patients and their families were inspiring, as is the grit and determination of the medical professionals to advance the work of treating and finding a cure for Chiari, syringomyelia, and related disorders. I came away with a much better understanding of the scope of CSF and the many people worldwide who are affected by it, as well as a sense of hope and admiration for all of you who have made it your life's work. Congratulations on the great success of the weekend!" writes Marcia V. Mayo, guest at the 2nd Annual CSF Night of Light Children's Gala. This magical event was hosted by CSF at the James Burden Mansion in New York City on November 12, 2011.
New York City Piper Jerry Dixon welcomed everyone at the carriage entrance with bagpipes summoning guests to climb the grand marble spiral staircase to The Banquet Hall. The champagne cocktail hour featured the Clueri String Quartet filling the room with elegant music while guests mingled with Patrons and Honorees and sampled delectable hors d'oeuvres. Famed photographer, Gay Cioffi captured the evening's festivities in pictures.
The twelve foot high doors paneled with oblong mirrors opened to the Grand Ballroom, modeled after the Galeries des Glaces of Versailles as our Piper beckoned the 90 guests to enter the formal dining area for dinner. Canard Inc. caterers did a magnificent job with the delicious dinner and impeccable service. Andre Shearer of Cape Classics generously donated the wine for the event. Dr. Fraser Henderson formally welcomed the guests and led the Invocation.
Paul Farrell, Chairman of CSF, presented the CSF vision and mission while guests enjoyed the amuse-bouche of Peking duck paired with Kanu Kia Ora 2005. Dr. Fraser Henderson followed with an update of CSF's current research progress while guests enjoyed a Lobster Napoleon paired with Buitenverwachting Chardonnay 2009.
Dr. Ulrich Batzdorf gave an eloquent toast to patients and spoke about the work and mission of CSF.
Dr. Alexander Mark introduced Meghan McCall, soprano, and Marcos Galvany, composer/pianist, our very special guest artists for the evening. They captivated the room with their extraordinary performance of arias from "Oh My Son" an opera written by Mr. Galvany and performed at Carnegie Hall. While guests dined on Horseradish Crusted Filet of Beef paired with De Toren Z 2008, Meghan's "bell-like clarity" enveloped the room with an angelic treatment of Marcos' beautiful arias, The Kingdom of My Joy and My Baby. The performance finished with a moving rendition of "Danny Boy" which garnered a standing ovation.
The Pumpkin Ginger Meringue Cake dessert was paired with Klein Constantia Vin De Constance 2006, a sweet treat, while Dorothy Poppe, CSF's Executive Director, presented awards to our Patrons and honored guests. Lord Nicholas Fairfax of Cameron accepted his Night of Light Medal and spoke on the importance of charitable giving. Senator Lindsey Graham was unable to attend due to the Presidential debate in South Carolina, but sent a video message for the evening which will be available on our website shortly. His award was accepted by his sister, Darline Graham and niece, Emillie Boggs, who brought the crowd to tears with their testimonial. Dr. Paolo Bolognese gave a very moving testimonial thanking the giants of neurosurgery who brought research to the point it is today.
The keynote speech of the evening was given by Lord Mark Malloch-Brown, Chairman of Europe, Middle East & Africa for FTI Consulting. He had previously served as Deputy Secretary General and Chief of Staff of the UN under Kofi Annan. But tonight, he spoke as a father, looking for answers for his daughter. Focusing on how his daughter's illness has changed the family dynamic, his heartfelt speech gave us a glimpse into a father's perspective of having a chronically ill child.
The "piece de resistance" of the evening was a very generous gift of 100,000 shares of stock donated by Dr. Steven Victor of Intellicell, followed by a champagne and petit four reception providing a chance to speak to old friends, new friends and honored guests in the Banquet Room.
A very special thank you to those who made this evening possible:
The Gala Steering committee, Mr. Christopher Burnham, Mr. Paul Farrell, Mr. Scott Gregerson, Dr. Fraser Henderson, Lady Trish Malloch-Brown, Ms. Dorothy Poppe, and Mr. Randy Theken. The committee would like to give special thanks to Mrs. Becky Henderson who was involved in every detail of the event. We couldn't do it without you!
CSF had many people underwrite this event in donations and sponsorships. We are very grateful for their time, treasure and talent!