Friday, April 22, 2011

Businesses and celebrities unite for St. Jude’s Gala por la Vida in New York, April 28th - Few tickets left!

NEW YORK, NY (April 22nd, 2011) – The leadership and influence of recognized Latino business professionals, celebrities and executives in New York has set the tone for the launch of the second annual “Gala por la Vida” (Gala for Life) event, a night of hope for children who are suffering from cancer and other catastrophic diseases at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital®, the nation’s top children’s cancer hospital. The gala will take place on April 28, 2011 at 6:30 p.m. at the exclusive Angel Orensanz Foundation Center for the Arts in New York. This year, the gala will honor prominent minority-owned business and non-profit leader George A. Zeppenfeldt-Cestero, President and CEO of the National Hispanic Chamber of Commerce on Health, for his commitment and dedication to improving the lives of minority groups in the healthcare community. Well-known local news personality, Sandra O’Neill, from Univision 41 will host the evening’s event.

“The members of the committee are putting forth their best resources and contacts to provide hope to the thousands of children who need treatment at St. Jude,” said Liliana Gil, chair of the Gala por la Vida committee and XL Alliance Managing Partner. The committee counts on the generous support of dedicated volunteers such as Chris Valletta, ex NFL player and former cast member of the NBC’s “The Apprentice”; Cesar Camacho, the event's creative director and producer; fashion consultant Valentina Henao, Karen Hoyos, Mark Antonacci, Carlos Vasallo, David A. Chitel, Karla Micalizzi, Diane Rankin, Gabriela Nevez, Michael A. Fernandez, Kelly Ramirez, Martha Llamoza, Mary C. Miqueli, Monica Dias, Warren Peña, Gabriela Poler, Jesús Maldonado and Windy Lopez.

The gala will include an exclusive fashion show by renowned Colombo-Venezuelan designer Raul Peñaranda. Peñaranda, who has worked with world-renowned fashion houses, including Oscar de la Renta, Kellwood and Tommy Hilfiger, will be showing his Fall 2011 collection at the Gala por la Vida. The exclusive fashion show will be sponsored by Vanidades magazine and styled by Camilo Vergara.

“We want to help St. Jude in their continuous quest in helping children fight cancer and our participation in this year’s Gala allows us to be a part of their worthy cause especially as it relates to the Hispanic community,” said Madelin Bosakewich, US and International Sales Director of Televisa Publishing + Digital.

The gala’s 300 guests will enjoy an unforgettable evening accompanied by top Latin music and television stars, and New York’s philanthropic community as they walk the red carpet. The evening’s events will include silent and live auctions featuring items like a personal donation from Gala por la Vida’s supporter, John Leguizamo, who has donated a personal backstage experience to his new Broadway show, Ghetto Klown.

Live performances will feature recording artist Fragancia, former member of the group DLG, new bachata sensation Yunel Cruz and as well as entertainment by DJ Kazzanova, from Univision Radio’s x96.3. Guests will also taste a menu exclusively designed for the gala by Salvadorian celebrity chef and Food Network star Ricardo Cardona. Some of the participating sponsors include Shoprite, Vanidades, Univision, Johnnie Walker, Wines of Argentina, MISSION Athlete Care, Starlite Media, The Kimball Family Foundation, Toma Vodka, Hispanolia Rum, d’expósito & Partners, XL Alliance, among others.

Thanks to events like Gala por la Vida, St. Jude is able to continue providing lifesaving medical treatments to children fighting cancers like leukemia, regardless of a family’s inability to pay. For more information on purchasing tickets to the gala, sponsorships or donating silent auction items, please contact (212) 239-3239 or visit This year, we also ask the community to take part in a text messaging campaign benefiting St. Jude by texting the word “VIDA” to 90999 to donate $10 for the children of St. Jude.

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