On Monday, November 2, 2015, the Elton John AIDS Foundation (EJAF) raised more than 3.3 million at its 14th annual An Enduring Vision benefit gala to support HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment, and awareness programs across the United States, the Americas, and the Caribbean.
American Airlines, Robert K. Kraft, The Lauder Foundation- Leonard & Judy Lauder Fund, Mylan, Pablo and Nathalie Salame, Sands Bethlehem, and Wells Fargo served as the Presenting Sponsors of the benefit. The star-studded evening was held at Cipriani Wall Street in New York City.
As part of the evening’s program, EJAF Founder Elton John and Chairman David Furnish presented Enduring Vision awards to three outstanding Foundation supporters – M. Michele Burns, Robert J. Coury, and Tracey Emin.
M. Michele Burns is an internationally recognized corporate and philanthropic leader, played an integral part in EJAF’s inception, and has served as an Executive Board Member from the very beginning. Robert J. Coury, Executive Chairman of Mylan, continues to be a visionary in leading the company into areas where it can make a difference, such as improving global health and helping to end the AIDS epidemic. Tracey Emin is one of the most renowned and respected living artists today and is also a fierce humanitarian and tireless advocate for human rights causes.
CNN anchor Anderson Cooper emceed the gala dinner for an eighth time. Darren Walker, President of the Ford Foundation, spoke eloquently about the Foundation’s achievements and the role of philanthropy in ending the AIDS epidemic. KC and the Sunshine Band took the stage for a rollicking performance of disco classics. And guest auctioneer Alexander Gilkes of Paddle 8 conducted a live auction featuring such one-of-a-kind items as a neon work of art by honoree, Tracey Emin, a 1999 print of Elton John by photographer David LaChapelle, the opportunity to create bespoke champagne with HATT et SÖNER, a group of unique archival pigment prints by Joel Meyerowitz and fine jewelry by Lily Gabriella.
“I cannot begin to express how incredibly grateful I am to all of the amazing donors and friends who support and attend An Enduring Vision year after year,” said Elton. “Their generosity helps to make our lifesaving work possible and brings us closer to achieving our vision of a world without AIDS.”
Through the impeccable credibility and reputation attained based on more than two decades of extensive work, EJAF has emerged as a significant leader in the field of AIDS. The Foundation advances public dialogue on critical and controversial issues related to the epidemic and challenges misguided policies and attitudes that block progress in HIV prevention. Proceeds from An Enduring Vision will help support these efforts, as well as EJAF’s grant-making initiatives across the U.S., the Caribbean, and the Americas.