2011 Beaux Arts Ball Raises Over $2 million for National Jewish Health
Denver event transported guests to Ibiza, Spain, at the Hyatt Regency Denver at Colorado Convention Center
National Jewish Health drew more than 1,200 people from across the nation including New York and Los Angeles on Saturday, March 19, for the 2011 Morgridge Family Foundation Beaux Arts Ball. The white-tie gala raised more than $2 million for the institution, including $400,000 for the Kunsberg School for chronically ill children.
The Beaux Arts Ball, held at the Hyatt Regency Denver at Colorado Convention Center, is one of the most anticipated events in Denver and the largest annual National Jewish Health fundraising event in Denver. This year’s theme, “Ibiza: A Holiday on the Spanish Mediterranean,” featured flamenco dancers, a DJ, Spanish guitar music, models in swimwear and traditional Spanish dress, face-painters and a live band. Students from the Denver School of The Arts passed out glow-in-the-dark necklaces and brought people to the dance floor in conga lines.
Dr. Michael Salem, president and CEO, honored Iris and Michael Smith with the Arthur B. Lorber Award for Distinguished Service for their many years of support for National Jewish Health. Grand Marshals Carrie and John Morgridge, Linda and Richard Schierburg, Viki and Jack Thompson and Joni and Scott Wylie were also honored and acknowledged for their generosity, spirit and hard work that ensured the success of the event.
The event included a live auction and paddle-raising Fund-a-Need reverse auction, which raised funds to operate Kunsberg School, a unique, free day school that combines world-class medical care, small classes and daily physical exercise for 90, kindergarten through eighth-grade students who are learning to manage their chronic illnesses. Beaux Arts Ball attendees heard the story of Kunsberg student Alesha Anderson, a young child who suffered from life-threatening allergies and couldn’t attend school until her parents found Kunsberg. Today, Alesha is thriving academically and has learned how to manage her allergies.
Kunsberg School at National Jewish Health is a free day school for about 90 chronically ill students in kindergarten through eighth grades. Its mission is to provide a safe, friendly and healthy school environment where students succeed academically, medically and socially. Many students are minorities, and most families are at or below poverty level. Typically, they have fallen behind their peers in school because of illnesses including severe asthma and/or allergies, sickle cell anemia, diabetes, HIV/AIDS and other respiratory and related disorders. Kunsberg students receive care and learn to manage their illnesses from three nurses and National Jewish Health pediatricians. They eat nutritious meals, exercise daily, and practice positive social interaction. The students learn in small classes from teachers with advanced degrees using the latest educational technology tools and demonstrate their knowledge by showing steady improvements on the CSAP test and outpacing their peers in similar schools. Upon graduation, Kunsberg students have the skills to lead healthy, productive, meaningful and active lives.
National Jewish Health is known worldwide for treatment of patients with respiratory, cardiac, immune and related disorders, and for groundbreaking medical research. Founded in 1899 as a nonprofit hospital, National Jewish Health remains the only facility in the world dedicated exclusively to these disorders. Since 1998, U.S. News & World Report has ranked National Jewish Health the #1 respiratory hospital in the nation.