Last Wednesday evening, more than 800 leaders in entertainment, business, healthcare and philanthropy came together for the 2017 Cedars-Sinai Board of Governors Gala.
The event raised over $1.3 million for the Cedars-Sinai Board of Governors Regenerative Medicine Institute, which focuses on research into restoring function in diseased or aged tissues through revitalizing existing cells or transplanting new cells, including disease modeling using a patient’s own stem cells.
Los Angeles Rams Owner/Chairman E. Stanley Kroenke was honored with the Board of Governors Visionary Award, which was presented by Kevin Demoff, LA Rams COO and EVP of Football Operations.
“Thanks to Cedars-Sinai and the Board of Governors,” said Kroenke. “My family and I are inspired by the work of Dr. (Clive) Svendsen and the Regenerative Medicine Institute. We are so happy to partner with Cedars-Sinai and the Board of Governors to support them as we all work toward new paths to help those in need and their families.”
Emmy Award-winning producer Gordon Gray and his wife Kristen were presented with the inaugural Luminary Award. The Grays founded The Charlotte and Gwyneth Gray Foundation to Cure Batten Disease in honor of their two young daughters who are both suffering from the fatal and rare disorder, for which there is currently no cure. Dr. Svendsen, Director of Cedars-Sinai Board of Governors Regenerative Medicine Institute, presented the Grays with their award.
“In March 2015, we were told our daughters had Batten disease. Like many of you, we had never heard of it. We were told it was fatal. We could not accept that,” said Gordon Gray. “Without the collaboration of Cedars-Sinai, we never would have come this far,” added Kristen Gray.
The festivities commenced with a lively performance by the LA Rams Cheerleaders. Jim Hill, sports director for CBS Los Angeles, served as master of ceremonies for the event. Guests also enjoyed a spirited live auction, which featured a trip with the Rams on their team charter plane to an away game, tickets to Super Bowl LII in Minneapolis, the opportunity to act as coin-toss captain at an LA Rams home game, and more. The evening also featured a heartfelt acoustic set from Boyz II Men, which included their hits “I’ll Make Love to You”, “End of the Road”, and “Water Runs Dry”, as well as a special tribute to Tom Petty with a performance of “Free Fallin’”. The gala was co-chaired by Lisa DeBartolo Miggs and Don Miggs, and Nikki DeBartolo and Chad Chronister.
The Cedars-Sinai Board of Governors (BOG) is an energetic community of philanthropic leaders who are helping define the future of healthcare. Established by the Board of Directors in 1971, the BOG has become the primary fundraising and leadership group at Cedars-Sinai.