By Matthew Hacke | Photographs from Variety — The Children’s Charity
WHO: Nearly 480 guests, including Leo Gerard, international president of United Steelworkers and 2017 honoree; Roy Powell, partner at Jones Day and 2017 honoree; Governor Tom Corbett; Governor Ed Rendell; Deb Rice-Johnson, president of Highmark Health Plan and Variety board president; and Rob Kozel, board member of Arsenal Resources and Variety
WHAT: Variety’s 90th Annual Gala raised over $500,000 to sponsor more adaptive bikes, strollers, and communication devices for eligible children with disabilities throughout the organization’s 54-county service area in Pennsylvania and West Virginia.
WHERE: Heinz Field
HIGHLIGHTS: Attendees enjoyed a sit-down dinner of seasonal fare and crème brûlée cheesecake for dessert, as well as a locally sourced bourbon tasting and a silent auction. The gala marked a significant milestone for Variety, as its “My Bike” Program launched five years ago. Since then, it has sponsored more than 1,900 adaptive bikes, strollers, and communication devices for eligible kids!
“At Variety’s 90th Annual Gala, we were truly united together for kids. From the bike parade, which featured eight Variety kids kicking off the evening on their adaptive bikes to cheers from attendees, to Jen Winfield, mother of Tyler, age 6, who spoke about how her son’s communication device has significantly changed his life, the event was truly amazing.”
— Charlie LaVallee, CEO of Variety – the Children’s Charity