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Sunday, Apr 14, 2024


Time to Celebrate

Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Orange County held its annual CASA Celebration on Aug. 27, at Vea Newport Beach. Event sponsors included Karen Jordan, community philanthropist, Diamond Sponsor; Lucy Donahue, chief strategy officer, By Light Professional IT Services, Emerald Sponsor; Lugano Diamonds, exclusive jewelry sponsor; and 1500 Sound Academy, entertainment sponsor. Disc Sports & Spine Center/Dr. Robert Bray; South Coast Plaza; Doug Hodge and Kylie Schuyler, executive chairman and founder, Global G.L.O.W.; Mango House Media; and Modern Luxury were additional underwriters.

This year’s gala netted more than $1.4 million, the highest in the event’s 37-year history, which included an anonymous matching donation from an event guest for $250,000. The funds will support CASA’s ongoing mission to help provide a consistent adult in the life of a young person in the foster care system, which has been shown to improve their grades in school, increase their connections to siblings and extended family, and ensure access to services that will impact their future success.

The event was attended by 267 guests, who enjoyed a silent auction, live auction, a Fund-the-Mission paddle raise, which by itself garnered $727,000, and an awards ceremony. BLT Enterprises was recognized at the event as this year’s Outstanding Corporation. Capital Group Foundation received the Outstanding Foundation award and Linda and Burton Young, principal and founder, Sperry Equities & Sperry Commercial, were lauded as this year’s Children’s Champions. Additional honors were bestowed on several other supporters who have shown for exceptional commitment and support of CASA’s organization and mission.

Zoo for Me and You

More than 300 guests attended the Starry, Starry Zoofari gala on Aug. 20, hosted by The Friends of Santa Ana Zoo (FOSAZ). The event netted more than $100,000. Sponsors included James Howe on behalf of Bert L. Howe & Associates Inc.; Caribou IndustriesMike Harrah/Nathan Hittle; Katrina Foley, Orange County Supervisor; Republic Services; Newmeyer Dillion; and Payroll Payrunner Inc. Henry DiCarlo, Emmy Award winning meteorologist and sportscaster, KTLA 5 Morning News, served as emcee and auctioneer for the evening.

Snakes, a centipede, an armadillo and donkeys and their handlers greeted guests as they entered the Santa Ana Zoo. Attendees were encouraged to tour the zoo grounds and the newly completed butterfly enclosure, as well as view the new Giant River Otter Habitat and Primate Trails Experience, currently under construction. The Golden-Poppies Elephant sculpture by artist Jeff Carillo was on display as part of Elephant Parade, a social enterprise that runs the world’s largest decorated elephant statues created by artists and celebrities to raise awareness for the protection and conservation of elephants.

“The Santa Ana Zoo is unique because it gives kids an appreciation for animals and wildlife they wouldn’t be able to see, and it gives great service to the community by providing educational opportunities,” said John Harper, partner, Harper & Burns LLP and new FOSAZ board president.

Carefree Day

On July 30, Illumination Foundation held its Ninth Annual Carnival for Kids at La Palma Park in Anaheim. The once-a-year experience included Stormtroopers, Ghostbusters, Wild Wing from the Anaheim Ducks, stilt walkers, folkloric dancers, carnival rides, food and children’s live music. Families enjoyed a variety of activity booths and games, including bean bag toss, corn hole, coloring station, and selfie station as well as water safety, helmet safety, and dental hygiene booths hosted by local companies, community organizations, and volunteers

“Carnival for Kids provided an opportunity for underserved families to enjoy a carefree day they might not otherwise be able to experience,” said Jack Toan, co-CEO, Illumination Foundation. “It was amazing to see the joy on children’s faces. We are grateful to partner with so many community organizations, sponsors, and volunteers who helped make this day possible.”

Sponsors included F&M Bank, Bracken’s Kitchen, Prospera Hotels, CalOptima, West-Tech Materials, West Coast University, Edwards Lifesciences and Kaiser Permanente.

Bits & Pieces

In June, Antis Roofing & Waterproofing was named 2022 Business Philanthropist of the Year by the Greater Irvine Chamber. … The 35th Annual Lobsterfest held by the Rotary Club of Yorba Linda on May 21 raised $115,000 to support For Families of Active Military, Orange County Teen Challenge, Higher Ground Youth & Family Services, Make-A-Wish of Orange County & the Inland Empire, Providence St. Jude Medical Center, Rising Above Disabilities and YMCA of Orange County.

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