A Night of Giving, Gratitude, and Get Your Rescue On®
The Grand Hyatt in New York City was abuzz on Friday, December 1, as North Shore Animal League America celebrated 73 years of rescue at our 2017 Get Your Rescue On® Gala. The glamorous evening was filled with memorable inspiring moments fueled by hundreds of animal lovers coming together in support of Animal League America’s lifesaving mission to create a no-kill world.
Hosted by Hot 97 and ESPN radio personality, World Wrestling Entertainment commentator, and loving Mutt-i-gree adopter, Peter Rosenberg, with Animal League America Volunteer, Foster Parent, and National Spokesperson, Beth Stern, and her adoring husband and co-foster parent, Howard Stern, serving as Honorary Co-chairs, the event helped raise money in support of Bianca’s Furry Friends Feline Adoption Center. Just two days prior, Animal League America celebrated an important milestone in the capital project as Beth helped to break ground on the highly anticipated 14,000 square-foot facility that will soon serve as a cage-free sanctuary to so many homeless cats and kittens awaiting adoption.
“I am so excited and grateful to all of you for your encouragement and continued support. Because of you, so many cats will have the best care possible. They’ll enjoy a cage-free world where they can be easily socialized, given plenty of TLC and emotional support, and have an even better chance at finding the responsible, loving homes we all want for them,” said Beth of the facility that will enable Animal League America to rescue many more animals by adding a second floor to the existing shelter. “To everyone in this room tonight – and those who are here in spirit – thank you for caring about these precious lives as much as Howard and I do. Congratulations to all of you. You’re building a miracle!”
Joining Beth and Howard on the Gala Committee were Lisa Alexander, Steven Bautista, Jacquelyn French, Beth Harrison, Megan McGlinn, VMD, Matthew Purpura, Jeffrey Schick, and Vin Vergara.
Scenes From the Blue Carpet
Friends of Animal League America took to the blue carpet in style at the Grand Hyatt in New York City.
Images courtesy photographers Lisa Anselmo, Ted Lim, and Rob Rich.
Animal League America President J. John Stevenson was joined at the podium with board member, Dr. Gerald Tirozzi, to present a special Mutt-i-grees award to New York City Department of Education Chancellor, Carmen Fariña for her admirable work incorporating the Mutt-i-grees Curriculum and the Comfort Dog Program into 37 city schools since it launched last year. He also gave a special thank you to two valued partners in animal welfare and rescue – Nestle Purina PetCare and Zappos.com.
“I’d like to take this opportunity to extend my personal thanks to this generous company for sharing and steadfastly supporting our vision through the years. Thank you, Purina® for everything you do to help improve the lives of pets everywhere,” said President Stevenson. “This year we also worked with Zappos and our national rescue partners to hold special adoption events, including “Friends On Us Fridays,” and Home For The Pawlidayz.” Thank you Zappos, for saving so many lives through your “Zappos for Good” philanthropic arm, and being the lead sponsor of tonight’s Gala.”
After a short video showing Animal League America’s rescue work across the country and around the world – more specifically our work to aid our shelter partners in Florida, Texas, Puerto Rico, and the Caribbean with recovery efforts from the catastrophic hurricanes that ravaged the areas – Senior Vice President of Operations, Joanne Yohannan presented the prestigious Crystal Collar Award® to Nestle Purina PetCare for nearly two decades of supporting our no-kill mission. Patrick Mullen, Vice President of the Purina Professional Engagement Team, accepted the award on behalf of the company.
Fun in the Purina® Photo Booth
“I hope you realize that we could never do this expensive lifesaving work without your financial support. You – our friends and partners – give us the resources to save precious animals who would otherwise be helpless and lost forever,” Joanne said. “Just moments ago you saw photos of our Mobile Rescue Units stacked with emergency supplies, including bags and cartons of food from our partners at Purina. As dedicated, and longtime partners, they have been here for us and our Mutt-i-grees since 2000, when they recognized the power of our mission and began donating food and cat litter for our residents. Since, they’ve donated literally tons of food and litter, saving us millions of dollars we used to develop and support our lifesaving programs.”
After a delicious meal, a hilarious set by Comedian Scott Blakeman, and a fun filled silent auction, which included flashing neon cat ears being handed out to every guest who made a donation, the night was capped off by an amazing performance by Bee Gees Gold, a tribute to the iconic pop trio. Much to the pleasure of the audience, the band played all of the Bee Gees signature classics – from Stayin’ Alive, You Should Be Dancing, Night Fever, and many more – Bee Gees Gold transported the entire audience back to the ‘70’s and ‘80’s to close out a successful lifesaving night.