SportsBall 2018, the 24th Annual Black Tie & Sneakers Gala benefiting the Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health (AAIUH), will take place on Thursday, October 11th at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in New York City.

Renowned guests representing sports, philanthropy, business, entertainment, and medicine will gather to celebrate the legacy of tennis champion, activist and humanitarian Arthur Ashe. The SportsBall features interactive games, dinner, dancing, entertainment, an awards ceremony, and a silent auction. Each guest receives a complimentary pair of sneakers from Rack Room shoes.

This year’s gala will be co-hosted for the first time by Craig Melvin, news anchor on NBC News’ “TODAY” and an anchor on MSNBC, and his wife Lindsay Czarniak, anchor of CNN’s Bleacher Report and former host of ESPN’s SportsCenter.

The 2018 gala will honor Beverly Bond, Women’s empowerment leader and Founder of Black Girls Rock!, Bob Roth, CEO of the David Lynch Foundation; Tracey E. Wilson, PHD – Professor SUNY Downstate Medical Center School of Public Health; and Mike Woods, Meteorologist, and Reporter on FOX 5’s Good Day New York. Dr. Marilyn A. Fraser, CEO of the Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health, will once again preside over the gala.

SportsBall 2018 is a celebration with a purpose. Each year, the Institute honors individuals and organizations that are making significant contributions to urban communities in the areas of health, education, medical research, community service, and philanthropy. The funds raised at SportsBall support the Institute’s innovative community health education programs and research initiatives. Arthur Ashe founded the Institute in 1992, just two months before his death from AIDS, in response to the disproportionate amount of illness and death in urban communities from preventable diseases. Arthur knew that many of these diseases, such as diabetes and hypertension, were the result of inadequate health care delivery systems, late detection, and insufficient health education.

In 1992, Arthur Ashe established the Institute in partnership with SUNY Downstate, moved by the institution’s long history of serving immigrants and low-income Brooklyn residents, as well as its staff and faculty’s research. The Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health, located in multi-ethnic Brooklyn, collaborates with community members to design and conduct neighborhood-based interventions that address health conditions that disproportionately affect minorities. Recognizing the complexity of the economic and social determinants of health, the Institute partners with a wide variety of grassroots and institutional organizations to provide after-school science enrichment, outreach initiatives in trusted venues, and research and advocacy. Community Health Empowerment guides and unifies all of the Institute’s work.

For additional information about SportsBall 2018 and the Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health, go to: www.arthurasheinstitute.org.

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