Friday evening October 8, 2010 was a beautiful night in NYC for our 2nd Mark of Beauty Gala. The weather was perfect, the music (songs by our own soloists and the cast from Wanda’ s World) was amazing, there were over 220 in attendance and we were able to sponsor a number of families for our next conference due to the net proceeds from the event. Everyone commented that it was an incredible experience. We were also thrilled to announce that we have reached over 50,000 families who have been networked into treatment since 1994.
VBF was proud to announce that Dr. Gregory Levitin was honored as our 2010 Physician of the Year at our gala. In addition, our 2010 Service Awards were presented to: Saige Cavayero (VBF Student Rep), Dr. Geronemus’ s staff at the Laser & Skin Surgery Center of NY, Donna and Evan Ducker for their Buddy Booby Read-a-Thon, and Dr. Geronemus was presented with the Buddy Booby Award for his outreach to children and adults with birthmarks all over the world.
The Hudson Theatre was once again the host site for this year’ s Mark of Beauty Gala. Our chairs were Marc and Hyleri Katzenberg. Thanks to the Katzenbergs, we had a wonderful auction on line through Charity Buzz, the leading on-line celebrity auction house. Many thanks to the wonderful soloists: Jennie Legary, Christine Shannon with Kristen Melendez on violin, Carleigh Jurofsky (daughter of our PR Director Hyler Katzenberg) and the entire cast and crew from the wonderful off-Broadway production of Wanda’ s World.
The following morning we headed to NYU for our annual Vascular Birthmarks Conference. There were over 225 in attendance and we had over 15 presentations from the top medical experts in the field of vascular birthmarks and tumors. After the presentations we head to Dr. Geronemus’ s office where we had over 103 clinic appointments with 4 different medical teams between 1 and 6pm. We also had concurrent specialty sessions with insurance and legal experts, psychotherapists, make up artists, and an orthodontist. Following the conference, the VBF Board of Directors held their annual planning session.
Many who attended the conference were in awe at the families who came from all over the world to get an accurate diagnosis and an informal treatment plan. Even the physicians were amazed at how well the conference ran and how we were able to fit in 103 clinic appointments in 5 hours.
This has been our lowest year for donations but it has been our highest year for helping families. If you have not decided where to make your 2010 annual donation, please consider VBF because we are making a difference in the lives of families affected by a vascular birthmark or tumor. Your donations will go directly to Sponsor a Family so that they can attend our next conference (2011 in Irvine, California in October). Without the sponsorships, the families could not attend our conference and obtain accurate information and proper medical treatment.. We are the only charity that we know of that actually pays for the food, hotel, conference fee, and clinic appointments for our families through our Sponsor a Family program. Help us to continue to make a difference. You can make your 2010 donation by clicking on the DONATE button at the top of our main page. Thank You and a big thank you to all of our volunteers who made the gala and conference a huge success this year!