Little Hearts Luncheon and Fashion Show 2018


Really, they should be calling this event “big hearts.” Because that’s what abounded on Thursday when adorable children, dogs, firefighters and supporters gathered at Wings Over the Rockies for the Children’s Hospital Colorado Little Hearts Luncheon and Fashion Show.

This event has been going strong for over three decades, with amazing advocate Lyn Schaffer chairing the event for the 20th time this year. The chance to see the children and their families in a happy and festive setting is what this celebration is all about.

Kim Christiansen expertly took the helm again as emcee–always making things light-hearted and fun. Julie Neva of Chewy’s Bonetique was given the Maxwell Doud Paws of Praise Award, and John Mancheras and Dr. Neil Wilson were given the Sam and Fern Primack Heart Who Cares Award.

There wasn’t a dry eye in the house as Ryan and Amanda Blanchfield took the stage with their kids Cash and Adrina and told the story of how CHC saved Cash’s life.

The kids invariably took the chance to shine when the time came for the runway presentation. A well-deserved platform for joviality, this fashion show provided the opportunity to drop inhibitions and to show that once these kids got through their treatment at Children’s Hospital Colorado, anything else is cake.

National Jewish Health Presents Beaux Arts Bollywood Ball


The Beaux Arts Ball is arguably the kickoff to the philanthropic season in Denver and sets the bar high for imagination and creativity. This year was no exception as guests were virtually transported to India for the “Bollywood Ball.”

Attendees, dressed in colorful and glittering garb, were treated to energetic music, vibrant colors and high-spirited dance performances of Bollywood. Grand Marshals Michelle & Mike Fries, Gail & Jack Klapper, Karen & Michael Long and Susan Juroe & Michael Schonbrun presided over the festivities and were given an award for their leadership by National Jewish President and CEO Dr. Michael Salem.

The annual gala, presented by the Morgridge Family Foundation, benefits research and care at National Jewish Health, the nation’s leading respiratory hospital. The Beaux Arts Ball is the largest fundraising event for National Jewish Health in Denver. Each year, the black-tie gala raises $2 million or more to benefit patients with respiratory, cardiac, immune and related diseases and to support groundbreaking research conducted at National Jewish Health. Every day, millions of children struggle to breathe because of lung disease. Many other children go from doctor to doctor trying to find out why they can’t breathe. The National Jewish Health Silverstein Family Department of Pediatrics draws children and families from all over the world. There, they receive care from world-renowned pediatric specialists who are setting the guidelines in respiratory medicine.

For more information on this magical event and programs of National Jewish Health, visit

Children's 21st annual Classic Golf Tournament at Sanctuary



“Children are not adults. Their bodies are physiologically different from an adult,” said Dr. Rob Kramer, explaining the importance of research funds needed for children with health issues. Most research is done on adult diseases nationwide, he continued, but, while those studies do help with childhood diseases, much is needed to specifically help children with heart disease and intestinal problems.  Dr. Kramer emphasized this at the brunch preceding an exclusive day of golf at Sanctuary Golf Course and the 21st Annual Children’s Classic Golf Tournament. The Children’s Hospital Colorado Foundation depends on events like the Classic Golf Tournament to remain current with the latest in children’s diseases.

When it was founded in 1908 in Denver, Children’s Hospital Colorado set out to be a leader in providing the best healthcare outcomes for children. That calling has consistently made it one of the top children’s hospitals in the nation and a place parents across the Rocky Mountain region have come to trust.

In 1978, Children’s Hospital Colorado Foundation was formally established as a separate charitable 501(c)(3) organization dedicated solely to advancing the mission of Children’s Hospital Colorado.

The Foundation believes all children should have the chance for a healthy future. They are committed to community engagement and facilitating philanthropic support on behalf of the children and families Children’s Colorado serves.

Sancturary Golf Course in Sedalia was built by Dave and Gail Liniger, who for more than thirty years have supported numerous non-profits in Colorado. The Sancturary is private, a members only course, which has two members, Dave and Gail Liniger. Their generosity is unsurpassed. Their golf course and club house are dedicated to fundraising and hosting events that benefit their home, Colorado.

The Children’s Golf Classic on August 7, 2017, hosted approximately 124 supporters. The golfers took to the immaculately manicured golf course for an exceptional day of golf, friendship, philanthropy, magnificent food and a staff that would see to one’s every need. Even the golf carts are exclusive, state-of-the-art machines.

Sanctuary is a gift to the senses from Jim Engh of Castle Rock.  America’s brightest new rising star in golf architecture. Except for rattlesnake warnings, Engh and the Linigers have created an ideal setting for charitable events. For those who haven’t had the privilege of an invitation to this ‘little bit of heaven on earth,’ the fairways look like one big exquisite green designed with indigenous rock walls, water falls; cart paths that twist and wind to heights unparalleled on even the most expensive courses in the world.

The all day event included a morning brunch before the shotgun start at 11:30 a.m. On finishing eighteen holes the golfers were met with a post-golf cocktail reception with culinary stations and a tasting with Leopold Brothers fine bourbon. The day was wrapped up with musical entertainment, awards and thank yous to all who participated in this fun day for children across Colorado.

To learn more about CHC please go to:

Children’s Hospital Colorado Foundation
Phone: 720-777-1796 | Fax: 720-777-1799
Anschutz Medical Campus | 13123 East 16th Avenue, B045 | Aurora, Colorado 80045





Little Hearts, Big Hearts


The cause is to benefit “little hearts” but there were some really big hearts present at the 32nd annual “Little Hearts Luncheon and Fashion Show” on Friday.

This heart-warming fashion show and luncheon featured models, who have been treated at the Children’s Hospital Colorado Heart Institute, walking the runway with their heroes – their doctors, firefighters and pets. This unique event benefits the Heart Institute at CHC.

There’s the old saying “dance like no one is watching” and many of the models did just that, taking advantage of their 15 seconds of fame by strutting and dancing with abandonment and just plain enjoying the day through and through.

To kick off the program, longtime Chair and supporter Lyn Schaffer welcomed everyone and introduced Marilee and Ben Doud, who presented the Maxwell Doud Paws of Praise award, in honor of the late dog Maxwell, who was an integral part of the program for many years. The honor was given to Kathleen McBride.

Dr. Michael Schaffer then presented the Sam and Fern Primack “Heart Who Cares” award to Dawn Schmeck and Caitlin Brateng.

Dr. Jeff Darst told a heartwarming yet not uncommon story about a child at CHC who went into trauma recently, and because of the teamwork and legendary talent present, the child was saved and is doing very well now.

The real stars of the day were the models, who have all been patients at CHC and have treated things like open heart surgery and transplants as not a big deal. But it is a huge deal and the huge hearts at CHC are there to make sure the care is the very best of the best.

Hoops & Hoopla: Always a Winner


He shoots. He scores! And that’s just one of the guests playing a hoops game. Never mind 1,600 square feet of wall-to-wall gigantic TV screens showing action in the two men’s college basketball semifinals games. You don’t have to be a basketball fan to have a great time at Hoops & Hoopla, but if you are…wow, you’re in hoops heaven. This year’s event was another winner, raising nearly $145,000 National Jewish Health’s Morgridge Academy.

Fun at the roulette table

On Saturday, April, 1, nearly 400 guests (basketball fans and fans of fun) at Infinity Park Event Center were treated to the best watch party in town. The event began with snacks everywhere, passed hors d’oeuvres, an open bar and games ranging from hoops-shooting to air hockey to a for-fun-only casino area with poker and roulette. Meanwhile, the walls were covered with live nonstop TV basketball action, and the silent auction tables were full of enticing items up for bid. Spotted in the crowd were former Denver Nuggets stars Walter Davis, Ervin Johnson and Mark Randall. Occasions Catering provided a hearty dinner buffet just before the end of the first game.

(l to r): Former Denver Nuggets Walter Davis and Ervin Johnson, with Chauncey Billups Basketball Development’s Nick Graham

Event emcee and former Bronco Ryan Harris flashed his Super Bowl 50 ring for all to see (hard to miss!) while presiding over a short program between basketball games. National Jewish Health’s K-8 Morgridge Academy for chronically ill children, the event beneficiary, was spotlighted with an insightful video and a short talk by Jennifer McCullough, director of education. Team Greiner Electric members were recognized with the coveted MVP trophy after raising more than $60,000 in sponsorships, ticket sales and donations for the event. Craig Gallogly, a first-year solo coach of Team CED received the Rookie of the Year award and Kathy Hartzley, Team Jet Linx coach, was honored with the Heart of a Champion award for helping to make an impact among Morgridge Academy students.

Guests could buy mini-basketballs worth dollars and place them in a basket corresponding to select Denver classrooms, who received all donations in their basket. Brandon and Taylor Bergholz toss a few balls to make a donation.

Morgridge Academy is a unique day school program for approximately 90 students in grades K-8 who require medical assistance during the normal school day. The school is approved by the Colorado Department of Education and is located on the grounds of National Jewish Health in Denver. Children who attend the school have medical problems, which have caused frequent absences from regular school. The children at Morgridge Academy suffer from serious respiratory diseases, including asthma. Others have juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, sickle cell anemia and heart problems. Because of their serious illnesses, these children require immediate access to medical attention. The majority of the children are from low-income and minority neighborhoods in Denver’s inner city.

For more information about Morgridge Academy, please visit:

To learn more about the programs and services at National Jewish Health, please go to:

Beaux Arts Ball Celebrates 20 Years With Revolutionary Flair


When you’re one of the most prolific fundraising events in town—one that typically raises $2 million—how do you celebrate your own 20th anniversary? This year’s Beaux Arts Freedom Ball rose to the occasion, infusing its annual big, bold bash with American Revolution spirit, to the delight of 1,200 guests—all supporters of the programs and services of beneficiary National Jewish Health. The evening included Broadway-worthy performances drawn from “Hamilton,” including costumed dancers, singers, rappers and flag-wavers, along with a dance-inducing live band. And that was just the call to dinner.

Spirit of ’76

On Saturday, Feb. 25, Wings Over the Rockies Air & Space Museum was transformed into a Colonial village for a cocktail reception full of period décor, live characters from “Hamilton,” servers in Paul Revere hats … all with red, white and blue touches, of course. One side of the room was bordered by a floor-to-ceiling tarp, hiding the dining area. Just after 7 p.m., it was dramatically lowered after a song-and-dance presentation, and guests followed performers to their seats. Several partygoers hit the dance floor with the Bobby Attiko Band blaring out a musical invitation, even as dinner service was beginning.

John and Carrie Morgridge, recipients of this year’s Arthur B. Lorber Award for Distinguished Service

Board chair Blair Richardson began the program singling out well-known people in the audience, including Denver Mayor Michael Hancock, Rep. Ed Perlmutter and Ken Salazar. Honorary chair Barry Hirschfeld was recognized onstage, and Michael Salem, M.D., president and CEO, talked about National Jewish Health’s singular programs and services. Carrie and John Morgridge were recognized as recipients of the 2017 Arthur B. Lorber Award for Distinguished Service. The couple are vice president and president, respectively, of the Morgridge Family Foundation, which has supported major projects at NJH, as well as other noted Denver institutions. The award is the highest honor bestowed by National Jewish Health, and recognizes individuals who show leadership that has impacted the reputation, service science or mission of the institution. This year’s grand marshals were recognized from the stage: Debbie and Michael Feiner, Cathey and Richard Finlon, Mary Lou Blackledge Kortz and Donald Kortz, and Julie and Brent Morse.

The Bobby Attiko Band kept everyone dancing before and after the dinner program.

A live auction segment with auctioneer Christian Kolberg included a trio of package experiences: Bon Jovi and Faith Hill/Tim McGraw concerts, a trip to the CMA Awards in Nashville and an ultra-luxe excursion to Napa Valley. At the program’s conclusion, guests had the opportunity to once again take over the dance floor to kick up their heels, urged on by the Bobby Attiko until the building had to lock its doors.

National Jewish Health is the leading respiratory hospital in the nation. Founded in 1899 as a nonprofit hospital, NJH today is the only facility in the world dedicated exclusively to groundbreaking medical research and a treatment of patients with respiratory, cardiac, immune and related disorders. Patients and their families come to National Jewish Health from around the world to receive cutting-edge comprehensive, coordinated care.

Salem writes: “Through your participation in this event, you share in (NJH) success, ensuring that important programs continue to transform lives, our scientists make groundbreaking discoveries to cure diseases and our physicians can care for all patients regardless of ability to pay. At National Jewish Health, we are focused on innovation and the future. The work we do today will shape health care tomorrow. And the future of patient care lies with the kinds of teamwork for which we are known. Pulmonologists consult with rheumatologists, cardiologists, gastroenterologists and allergists to make the right diagnoses and to develop a complete picture and plan for their patients. As a result, we diagnose diseases earlier and we also focus on prevention and precision medicine.

“We would appreciate the opportunity to show you in person what makes National Jewish Health the leading respiratory hospital in the nation. Please let us know if you are interested in a Behind the Scenes visit.” For more information, please visit

Children's Hospital Colorado Foundation fundraiser at J. McLaughlin's


Dozens of Children’s Hospital Colorado (CHC) Foundation donors and supporters attended an informal fundraiser at J. McLaughlin, 2701 E 3rd Ave in Cherry Creek Wednesday, October 26 in support of hospital programs.

Thanks to hosts Cille Williams and Serena Robinson, Special Projects Manager for the Children’s Hospital Colorado Foundation, the get together provided a weekday break for a very good cause.

Cherry Creek retailer J. McLaughlin donated 15% of sales to support the Children’s Hospital Colorado, a part of the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals–a nonprofit organization dedicated to raising funds and awareness for children’s hospitals nationwide.

Philanthropists Cille and Ron Williams are well-known and long-time benefactors of various community-based non-profits in the Denver metro area including healthcare and educational institutions. Serena Robinson manages logistics and coordinates CHC Signature Events year-round including third party community-based events such as the annual Children’s Gala and Courage Classic Bicycle Tour. Among other CCH Foundation fundraising events coming up in November are:

Creating Ties Dinner / November 4, 2016
9th annual auction and fundraiser benefiting the Burn Camps Program.

Costume Craze / November 5, 2016
Themed costume party

Extra Life / November 5, 2016
A day of gaming

Merry Miracles Fun Shoot / Dec 3, 2016
Clays fun shoot and toy drive

To make a donation, volunteer or learn more about how you can help CHC please call 720-777-1700 or email

5th Annual Expressions of KINDness Gala


The Kids in Need of Dentistry (KIND) 5th Annual Expressions of KINDness Gala was held Friday, Sept 16 at the The Studio Loft at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House in downtown Denver. This year’s event was called “Denim and Diamonds” and included bolo ties, fancy leather vests, stylish cowboy boots and other western wear.

KIND is the oldest dental charity in the United States and the recognized leader in promoting the oral health of Colorado’s children. The evening featured auctioneer Gary Corbett and live music by the Narrow Gauge band with key Sponsors: UMB, Henry Schein, Dr. Jennifer Thompson, Commerce Bank, and Patterson Dental. Guests enjoyed a silent auction and an engaging cocktail hour before the event’s festivities.

Executive Director Julie Collett and Board President Kerrie Bunce– VP/Relationship Officer at sponsor UMB Bank thanked guests and sponsors for their support. The evening of celebration was dedicated to honoring individuals who have supported KIND’s mission through volunteerism, providing services, financial support and partnerships. The annual Gala also recognizes families who have benefited from KIND services in the communities the organization serves.

This year’s Award Honorees are:
Randy and Alexa Kowalczyk
Dr. Nellie Barr & Dr. Sean Whalen
Mental Health Center of Denver
MHCD-Dahlia Campus for Health and Well-Being
• KIND Family Award Winner Isaiah Alfonso with parents, Pete & Dawn

KIND is always looking for volunteers. Whether you’re a dentist that would like to spend a day in one of our clinics or a supporter that wants to give their time to helping with an event, please contact the KIND office at 303-733-3710 or visit the web site at

Wine and Wags Highlights Pet Prescription Program


The power of the love of an animal can never be underestimated.

Friends, wagging tails and supporters of the Prescription Pet Program of Children’s Hospital gathered for the annual Wine and Wags celebration at Kuni Lexus in Greenwood Village, and that point was very evident.

Special guest was former Captain Luis Carlos Montalvan and his dog Tuesday. Capt. Montalvan was a 17-year veteran who was injured many years ago, but only recently lost his leg. “Tuesday provided, and still daily provides, joy, guidance and confidence,” he beamed, as Tuesday patiently waited for his master to do whatever he needed him to do. Montalvan is the New York Times best selling author of “Until Tuesday: The Wounded Warrior and the Golden Retriever Who Saved Him.” 

Dr. Sara Mark and Lyn Schaffer welcomed guests and thanked everyone for their continued support of the Prescription Pet Program.

The Prescription Pet Program (the first in the nation) is a dog-assisted therapy and visitation program that began in 1984 as a cooperative effort of Children’s Colorado and the Denver Area Veterinary Medical Society (DAVMS).

As part of the program, specially-trained volunteer dog owners take their dogs on rounds at Children’s Colorado Hospital. All Prescription Pet dogs have passed a vigorous screening and have been approved by veterinarians who volunteer their time. The dogs’ visits with patients can range from a few minutes to 15 minutes or longer, depending on the child’s response. The dogs also assist the medical staff in the psychiatric units and, as needed, in the physical rehabilitation department.

Log on to to find out how you can participate or assist.

Kids In Need of Dentistry 29th Annual Strokes of KINDness Golf Tournament


What better way to usher in the first day of summer than with a non-profit supporting kids! On a sunny Monday morning, June 20th, some 140 golfer-philanthropists took part in the 29th Annual Strokes of KINDness Golf Tournament benefiting Kids In Need Of Dentistry (KIND), a non-profit that provides quality, comprehensive dental care and education for children from uninsured and low-income families.

Founded in 1912 by a committee of dentists from the Denver Dental Society (now called the Metropolitan Denver Dental Society or MDDS), KIND is the oldest dental charity in the United States and the recognized leader in promoting the oral health of Colorado’s children.  Additional clinics were opened in the mid-1960s and in 2003 and mobile services were added in the late 1990’s.

The annual event was held at Bear Dance Golf Course in Larkspur, which is always a treat for players especially since Bear Dance was named the No. 1 golf course along the Front Range in 2014 and 2015.

Executive Director Julie Collett and Board President Kerrie Bunce– VP/Relationship Officer at sponsor UMB Bank–were on hand with volunteers to guide participants through the rules and awards ceremony later in the day.

This year’s winners are:
1st Place: Gary Field, Scott Reiter, Matt D’Addario, Brett Buller
1st Place Co-ed: Bryan Dahler, Lis Baros, Brian Deken, Brandon Veverka
2nd Place: Fred Guerra, Laura Guerra, Michael Guerra, Steven Guerra
3rd Place: Nick Zavolio, Kerry Fowler, Max Breslow, Adam Trenan
Men’s Longest Drive-Wiley Kowlaczyk
Ladies Longest Drive-Naomi Lane
Men’s Closest to the Hole-Marc Shirazi
Ladies Closest to the Hole-Sarah Clark
Long Putt-Alexa Kowlaczyk

Special thanks to this year’s sponsors: Gold Sponsor – UMB; Breakfast Sponsor – Henry Schein; Hole In One Sponsor – UMB; Beverage Cart Sponsor – CTC Associates; Cart Sponsor – Denver Metro OMS / Drs. Patterson & DiPasquale.

Through its Chopper Topper Program the organization sends dental hygienists to elementary schools to apply sealants to children’s teeth, a cost-effective preventive measure preferred over fillings. Launched in 1997, the program offers screening and preventive treatments to 90 schools in 11 metro Denver school districts.

The annual golf tournament is one of KIND’s two major annual fund-raising events. Their next fundraiser called Expressions of KINDness GALA will be held Friday, September 16. KIND is always looking for volunteers. Whether you’re a dentist that would like to spend a day at a clinic or a supporter with some spare time to help with an event, please contact the KIND office at 303-733-3710 or visit the web site at

Little Hearts Luncheon Is A Big Success For CHC Heart Institute


Put kids, dogs and firefighters in the same place, and you’re guaranteed to experience nonstop cuteness and charm. At Little Hearts Luncheon & Fashion Show, it’s augmented even further when you know the kids are past heart patients, the dogs are part of the Children’s Hospital Colorado pet-therapy program, firefighters remain our heroes—and because funds raised from the luncheon go to the Children’s Hospital Colorado Heart Institute. No wonder the event has continued to grow in its 31 years of existence. This year Little Hearts sparkled once again on Friday, April 15, with more than 400 guests who enjoyed a delightful weekday respite at Wings Over the Rockies Air & Space Museum.

Representing sponsor First American State Bank in style

Representing sponsor First American State Bank in style

The event began with a busy silent auction and reception, and music provided by singer-keyboardist Charlotte Sass. Kids had the added bonus of meeting beautiful Denver Broncos mascot, Thunder, just outside the museum’s entrance. In a convivial atmosphere, doctors, former patients and families, sponsors and supporters all mingled together with hugs and laughter. As guests enjoyed a tasty lunch provided by Biscuits & Berries, emcee Kim Christiansen took the stage to preside over the afternoon program. Sara Mark, D.V.M., was completely surprised as the recipient of the inaugural Maxwell Doud Paws of Praise Award (Maxwell is a lovable Bernese Mountain service dog); and for his wellness-program efforts, CHC pediatric cardiologist Jeff Darst, M.D., was honored with this year’s Fern Primack Heart Who Cares Award. Event chair Lyn Schaffer recognized sponsors and volunteers for their assistance and support, as well as Mark Neff, who underwent heart surgery at CHC 60 years ago and traveled from Texas to attend this event.

Izabella strikes a pose in her pretty spring dress.

Izabella strikes a pose in her pretty spring dress.

The accompanying fashion show, with apparel provided by Dillard’s, featured CHC pediatric heart patients escorted by South Metro Fire Rescue and Denver Fire firefighters, plus well-known personalities such as Colorado’s former First Lady Frances Owens and society editor-reporter Joanne Davidson, as well as doctors and family members. Several were also accompanied by adorable dogs from the CHC Prescription Pet Program. As models hit the runway, Christiansen told the story of each one, including her son Tanner as well as that of her sister Keri. Camera phones were required equipment as proud family members and friends recorded their favorite models posing, dancing or just happily waving to guests from the runway.

Children’s Hospital Colorado’s Heart Institute is ranked among the top 20 pediatric hospitals in the nation for heart care and surgery by U.S. News & World Report. It is one of only eight stand-alone pediatric research centers in the nation and one of the fastest-growing pediatric cardiac programs in the country. Its doctors, surgeons and nurses have experience diagnosing and treating all types of heart disease. Because of this expertise, CHC Heart Institute offers a consistent care team for patients, from the developmental years into early adulthood. Special services are offered, such as the Welcome Program, to help families manage their non-medical needs. A multidisciplinary care team ensures all of the services each child may need are in one place. Combining the resources of some of the world’s most qualified and experienced heart specialists, every patient receives a more complete level of care. For more information, please visit: .

Darby Kelly with Prescription Pet Program participant, Cormac

Darby Kelly with Prescription Pet Program participant, Cormac

The Prescription Pet Program (the first in the nation) is a dog-assisted therapy and visitation initiative that began in 1984 as a cooperative effort of Children’s Colorado and the Denver Area Veterinary Medical Society (DAVMS). As part of the program, specially-trained volunteer dog owners take their dogs on rounds at Children’s Colorado. All Prescription Pet dogs have passed a vigorous screening and have been approved by veterinarians who volunteer their time. To learn more, please visit: .

Children's Gala

Kevin and Ann Reidy shared their family’s story about the life-saving treatment and the unparalleled support they received from Children’s Colorado when their daughter Diana was diagnosed with cancer in 2007.  “It’s an amazing place, the physicians and the nurses are second to none.  You don’t need to take your kid anywhere else if he or she is sick.  We should cherish this place, as I do, because it saved my daughter’s life,” said Kevin Reidy.  Children’s Hospital Colorado board chair Kevin Reidy and longtime volunteer Ann Reidy were excited to host this year’s Children’s Gala and share insight from their medical journey during their daughter Diana’s cancer treatment.

Ann & Kevin Reid sharing their family story

Ann & Kevin Reid sharing their family story

A video showed Diana’s treatment, Rachel Platten’s hit single “Fight Song” served as the emotional soundtrack during the video.  American singer and songwriter, Rachel Platten was the opening act at this year’s Children’s Gala.  Her 2015 single “Fight Song,” the first single from her Columbia Records debut, is an uplifting anthem that embodies a “don’t give up” message, perfect for the night’s program.  While performing “Fight Song,” Diana Reidy joined Platten on stage to accompany Platten on the flute.  Platten hugged Diana Reidy after the song as everyone in attendance cheered the wonderful performance.

Platten performing

Platten performing

Children’s Gala benefiting Children’s Hospital Colorado, is one of Denver’s premier black tie charity events. This year’s event was held Saturday, Oct. 17, 2015, at the Hyatt Regency Hotel at the Colorado Convention Center at 5:30 p.m.   For the 38th year, Children’s Gala brought together guests for an elegant evening to support the hospital. The ever-changing and always crowd-pleasing event included mission-focused live and video programming, dinner, dancing, and a silent and live auction. Children’s Gala has raised more than $33 million and continues to be one of the largest annual fundraising events to benefit the hospital.

Dance floor and stage

Dance floor and stage

Returning for the second year, 9News anchor Kyle Dyer was the master of ceremony.  Dyer has a special place in her heart for the care providers at Children’s Colorado who helped to save her youngest daughter’s life. She frequently profiles the medical challenges and triumphs of families at Children’s Colorado and her own experiences have helped her to bring unparalleled compassion to her storytelling.

After Rachel Platten took the stage, this year’s headliner was Super Diamond.  Super Diamond has been embraced by the long time Neil Diamond fan-base and also found huge popularity in the hip rock clubs of America.  They performed the timeless classics including “Sweet Caroline,” “America” and “Cherry Cherry.”

Super Diamond performing

Super Diamond performing

Children’s Hospital Colorado’s mission is to improve the health of children through the provision of high-quality, coordinated programs of patient care, education, research and advocacy.


Restoration Hardware opens its Old World doors to Cherry Creek


Elegance, good taste and manners dominated the evening of October 14, 2015.

When Restoration Hardware opened its door, they were not just any doors, mind you. They were large as castle doors that opened onto a marble foyer sparkling with exquisite chandeliers enhanced by subtle low-lighting. On entering, one simply followed the arched entrances into each differently well-decorated library, living room, den, bedroom, or sitting room. To the non-royals invited, it was like entering a royal villa in Monte Carlo.

The invitation-only guest list was dotted with local celebs known for their business, talent and philanthropic endeavors. The evening was for show and appreciation, RH wanted to show off this magnificent work of art to the public, that is now part of the Cherry Creek Mall. Though it was elegant and over-the-top, it was not a total for-show evening or, for that matter, one for successful profiling. Guests came to support the evening’s benefactors which were Children’s Hospital Colorado and The Denver Art Museum.

The new Restoration Hardware store is hands-down one of the most elegant and tasteful stores ever built – anywhere. Cherry Creek deserves this honor while the mall’s many shoppers will soon be completely in love with the store’s look and concept.

It’s not every day there’s a party in Denver that blows everyone’s minds. The Restoration Hardware opening will go down as one of the most awesome events ever. Guests were treated to live music, endless Bellinis, fresh appetizers of tuna, lobster, prime rib, gourmet chocolates and donut holes filled with ricotta cheese. They were out of this world.

What a party, what a place, what gracious loveliness and class. Congratulations to Restoration Hardware and Cherry Creek Mall. This is a very good friendship indeed.






Expressions of KINDness - September 18, 2015

KIND, Kids In Need of Dentistry, provides high quality, comprehensive dental care and education to kids in need throughout Colorado.  Expressions of KINDness is the annual gala fundraiser.  The fourth annual event was held on Friday, September 18, 2015 at the University of Denver, Joy Burns Center.  “We are a dental non-profit that has been providing dental care for kids in Colorado for over 103 years,” said Julie Collett, KIND Executive Director.  “Tonight we’re going to honor Tri County Health Department for all they’ve done as our partner for over 25 years.”

KIND has three dental clinics two in the Denver area and one in Colorado Springs.  “We raise funds and we provide dentistry for underprivileged kids in the inner city,” said Paul Luchau, one of the KIND Board of Directors.  “We provide cleanings, sealants, extractions when needed. Very rarely do they have to pay anything, there’s a lot of financing through grants that takes care of that. We’re really excited the direction that it’s taking.”

Kids In Need of Dentistry’s mission is to increase the health and happiness of Colorado’s children in need by eliminating dental disease through treatment and education.  In 1912 a group of Denver Dentists recognized a need for affordable dental services among children of low-income miners and railroad workers and decided to form a non-profit organization aimed at addressing that need.  While much has changed in the over one hundred years since KIND began its first clinic in Denver Public Schools, KIND’s mission has not.  Through KIND’s programs, staff, faithful volunteers and supporters, they continue to provide quality, comprehensive dental care and education to Colorado’s kids in need.

Kids in need of Dentistry’s vision is to be the recognized leader in promoting the oral health and education of Colorado’s children of need.

The gala was sponsored by DentaQuest, UMB and Dr. Jennifer Thompson.


8th Annual Grapes Against Wrath benefiting F.A.C.E.S.


More than 200 guests attended the Family Advocacy, Care, Education, Support nonprofit or F.A.C.E.S. 8th Annual Grapes Against Wrath signature event September 17 at the regal Magnolia Hotel in downtown Denver.

A silent auction, appetizers and cocktails provided a back drop for enthusiastic supporters with music provided by solo musician Jimmi Nasi and a live auction led by Doug Tisdale.

Executive Director Rita Harding and Development Director Kendell Aitchison circulated throughout the night with support from board members and staff.

Among the highlights of the event was the live auction of an autographed hockey stick from Colorado Avalanche Forward Nathan MacKinnon‘s with the winning bid by Board Member and long-time supporter Sarah Stoneking.

F.A.C.E.S was developed to provide parenting education, support and advocacy services for the prevention of child abuse, neglect and family violence nearly 40 years ago.

The mission of F.A.C.E.S. is to prevent child abuse, neglect, and family violence. Since its founding in 1974 the organization has served more than 6,000 families in the Denver metro region through its home visitation program, community-based parenting classes and professional family counseling.

For more information visit


Wags and Wine Bring Happiness


Sometimes the things that are the best for us are unspoken.

Dogs have an extra-sensory way of knowing when we need love and guidance and encouragement. Just being around man’s best friend gives a sense of calmness and well-being, and this is why the Prescription Pet program at Children’s Hospital Colorado has been successful and growing for the past 31 years.

“Over the next two years our dogs will be interacting in a controlled manner with patients on the autism spectrum,” says one of the original founders, Dr. Sara Mark. “The study is carefully designed to measure psysiologic changes in children when they are in the presence of dogs.”

There was no question how happy dogs made attendees at this year’s Wags and Wine event at Kuni Lexus in Greenwood Village on Tuesday night. Smiles abounded and tails wagged and friends hugged. This event brings awareness of the Prescription Pet program that started with 4 dogs and has grown to 40 teams.

Volunteers are always welcome: check out the program at

Aurora Vistas Annual Mayor's Cup Golf Tournament


The Aurora Vistas 22nd Annual Mayor’s Cup Golf Tournament received a capacity crowd this year in support of mental health services for children and families.

The “Fore Our Kids” Mayor’s Cup Golf Challenge was held Monday, August 17th on a spectacular sunny Colorado day along the rolling slopes of Aurora’s Murphy Creek Golf Course.

Aurora Mayor Steve Hogan, Arvada Mayor Marc Williams, and Sheridan Mayor Dallas Hall participated in the 18-hole event with some 120 philanthropic golfers. The event began around sunrise with a 6:30 a.m. breakfast and a 7:30 a.m. shotgun start.

Event organizer Debbie Stafford — with help from Tawney Bass, Troy Bowman, Tim Huffman and Golf Chair Terry Todd — coordinated the presentation of several golfing awards including men’s and women’s longest drive, longest putt, and closest to the pin. The challenging 18-hole course kept the event competitive with certificates and prize drawings awarded after a luncheon of grilled chicken breasts and hamburgers.

Aurora Mental Health Center staffers Cindy Bohl and Heather Dolan were on hand to help coordinate planning and media coverage. Presenting Sponsor Citywide Banks were represented by Senior VP Stephan Ghadaifchian and VP Debra Neeley.

The Aurora Vistas Foundation raises awareness and funds to support Aurora Mental Health Center’s programs for children and their families. Aurora Vistas President Sandy Sweeney and Aurora Mental Health Center Executive Director Dr. Randy Stith thanked generous supporters for their long years of sponsorship and in-kind donations that make this annual end of summer event possible.

Aurora Vistas seeks community support throughout the year to make a difference in the lives of Aurora’s children. Among the several ways to help support the organization is by individual and in-kind individual donations of products and services, applying to serve as an Auxiliary, Committee or Board member, or by providing sponsorship for one of the organization’s annual events.

For more information on helping out the organization please visit or call 303-617-2361.


CU School of Medicine's Bow Tie Ball honors Dr. Richard Krugman


cropped bow tie


Dr. Richard Krugman served as the Dean of the University of Colorado School of Medicine for 25 years. In his honor on Saturday night, November 15, 2014, (what looked like) the entire medical community came out to celebrate the man, who leaves behind him an insurmountable legacy to the state’s medical community and the CU School of Medicine.

Event Chair Jamie Angelich, created the lovely tribute evening to celebrate and highlight the charming, gregarious, kind, intelligent and generous man. Krugman’s league of friends and colleagues readily took to the podium to remember the many years spent in his company.

Emcee Matt Iseman led the accolades throughout the evening. Iseman, a former practicing MD and CU School of Medicine alumnus, left his medical career and headed to Los Angeles years ago.  The former doctor is now an accomplished working actor, writer, Emmy Award winner and host of NBC’s American Ninja Warrior…talk about a career change. His Hollywood presence and familiarity to Denver, and the school, served to keep the ball rolling with humor and well deserved respect for Dr. Krugman throughout the night.

The evening honored the Dean by hosting a live auction, led by Iseman. Among the unique and beautiful items auctioned was a autographed painting of Peyton Manning by Malcolm Farley, bronze sculptures by Georgene McGonagle, an exquisite Lady Rolex diamond watch from Hyde Park, a dinner for ten at Elway’s Cherry Creek with Dean Krugman (Iseman added one more to the $1,000 dollar a pop dinner.) Eleven friends will sit down at Elway’s to enjoy a steak dinner. Last but not least, from Hollywood, tickets to the 2015 People’s Choice Awards in Los Angeles at the NOKIA Theatre, January 7, 2015.

Sharing memories and respect for a long career were Darrell Kirch, MD, President and CEO, Association of American Medical Colleges. Lilly Marks, Vice President for Health Affairs, University of Colorado, Executive Vice Chancellor, Anschutz Medical Campus, and Donald M. Elliman, Chancellor, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus.

Dean Richard Krugman’s family honored their father and husband by unveiling a beautiful portrait by Benjamin McCready.

Dr. Richard Krugman is a man who did his job with quiet ease for 25 years. He will be greatly missed in the Dean’s office at CU Medical School. Dr. Krugman thanked his staff, the school and Jamie Angelich for the wonderful send-off by adding,  “I’m not retiring. I’m going to finish the work I started 25 years ago.” Krugman spent the better part of a medical career, before becoming Dean, on efforts to ending child abuse.


Children's Hospital Colorado Gala


Anicee didn’t seem to get the memo that most 11-year-old little girls are usually shy and reserved when talking on stage in front of hundreds of strangers. Instead, she has such a bright, vivacious and engaging personality that guests at the Children’s Hospital Colorado Gala on Saturday instantly fell in love with her.

Anicee is one of the precious patients at Children’s who receive the world class care that consistently puts the hospital in the top ten ranking in the nation in the US News & World Report and Parents Magazine. Founded in 1908, Children’s Colorado has more than 2,000 pediatric specialists and more then 5,000 full time employees who all have as their mission and utmost concern the best care possible for children. When area physicians need to find a place to care for their loved ones, Children’s Colorado is the top choice.

Anicee has catapulted to celebrity status herself, as she is an accomplished artist who began painting at age 3. Her paintings are not the average cute drawing that parents tape to their refrigerator. They are beautiful masterpieces, two of which were auctioned at the gala for $50,000 apiece. Look at her artwork at

Well-heeled guests, who have come to expect the same calibre in a gala for the Foundation every year as the hospital reputation, were not disappointed this year. The meal was outstanding, the auction was superb, the camaraderie unparalleled. A former patient at Children’s, Noah, treated attendees to “Noah’s Concerto” and the evening ramped up even higher with Canadian band Barenaked Ladies, who are this year celebrating their 25th anniversary with their 12th album, “GRINNING STREAK.”