Cystic Fibrosis Foundation’s Fort Lauderdale’s Finest Gala 2014Posted on: June 27th, 2014 by SoFlaNights.com
The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation hosted 2014 Fort Lauderdale’s Finest Gala, held at the Marriott Harbor Beach Resort and Spa. Finest Gala honors young professionals for their success in business, outstanding leadership, and fundraising commitment to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. The 23 outstanding young professionals being honored this year were: Rachel Adkins, Lindsey Bowdouris, Ashley Boxer, Leslie Bravo, Kevin Carey, Marla Chicotsky, Jodi Cohen, Joe Costello, Ted Delcima, Richard Dinh, Nick Dipierro, Bonnie Farmer, Dianna Greene, Dave Mehta, Phillip Montalvo, Alysia Naples, Megan Patena, Jacqueline Romano, Jenna Sacks, Ryan Scarnecchia, Taylor Sherman, Michael Wagner and Robert Wild.
More than 275 guests attended the nautical-themed gala, which feature a silent auction, live entertainment, open bar and dinner. Following a presentation by emcee Joy Taylor, Co Host of The Ticket Morning Show at FM 104.3 & AM 790 The Ticket Miami – WAXY, the Fort Lauderdale’s Finest honorees and guests had the opportunity to mix and mingle with Broward County’s most elite young professionals, while dancing the night away.
Celebrating the outstanding accomplishments of the honorees are many devoted sponsors including: Isle Casino, Wells Fargo, Subway, American Airlines, Ketel One Vodka, Southern Wine and Spirits, Gold Coast Beverage, PSAV and Ironbridge Tools. This year’s event is being chaired by two previous honorees, Joanna Piira and Marisa DeMartino, for whom the CF Foundation mission is very personal.
“I have been a part of the CF Foundation all my life as my younger brother has cystic fibrosis,” said Marisa DeMartino. “When I first moved to South Florida my involvement was still through my friends and family back home. Then, in 2009 I was chosen to be an honoree. It was a great way for me to take over our family fundraising efforts here in South Florida. I then spent the next four years planning along with the committee and watched the event continue to grow and raise money and awareness. So, when I was asked to be co-chair with Jonna, a friend since college, I was more than excited to accept and truly honored to take on the responsibility.”
“I was honored to be selected as an honoree in 2012,” said Jonna Piira. “It was a great experience and wonderful to see my family and friends come together to donate to such a great cause. With their help, I was able to raise over $14,000. This year I really hope to take our event to the next level with creativity, top level silent auction items, and a 20% increase in raised funds. We have also included a gallery exhibit by Leidy Images this year to help separate us from other events.”
Cystic fibrosis is a genetic disease affecting the respiratory and digestive systems of about 30,000 children and adults in the United States. Currently, there is no cure, but through impressive research efforts, CF patients are living in to their 30s, 40s, and beyond. The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation is the world’s leader in the search for a cure for cystic fibrosis. The Foundation funds more CF research than any other organization, and nearly every CF drug available today was made possible because of Foundation support. Based in Bethesda, MD, the Foundation also supports and accredits a national care center network that has been recognized by the National Institutes of Health as a model of care for a chronic disease.