Houston Galveston Institute Delivers Knock-Out Event
November 10, 2014 -- The Chocolate, Champagne & Charity event, benefiting Houston Galveston Institute, aka HGI Counseling Center, was recently held at the magnificent estate home of Dr. Gerard and Kym Gabel. A capacity crowd attended the event co-chaired Dr. Richard and Barbara Strax.
The evening began with a reception and VIP tour of the magnificent art collection of the Gabels. Following the champagne reception, guests were escorted to the Gabels private, full size basketball court on the property, which was magical transformed by Linda McIgnvale of A Memorable Event. McIngvale created a wonderland of lighted trees, a vision of ivory and champagne and linens, glowing candles, and all white, fresh flowers.
Dr. Carolyn Farb received the Second Annual Champion of Change Award, for her dedication, hard work and contributions to Houston and beyond. She received a standing ovation as she made her way to the podium. To quote Dr. Carolyn Farb: “These children deserve hope for a brighter future and a belief that their life dynamics can be changed for the better.”
Prior to Dr. Farb receiving the award, local singer Gail Best, dedicated the song, "Its a Wonderful World" to Farb, and the applause was overwhelming and long lasting.
Judge Eric Andell was at the helm of the live auction. He engaged numerous guests in dueling bids – one where the signed electric guitar of Beatles’ Paul McCartney exceeded the bids for the signed guitar of The Boss, Bruce Springsteen. Sakowitz Furs created quite a buzz, with one bidder buying all the furs. Lee Slataper’s much coveted Houston Rockets’ floor seats and complete package went to Dr.Carolyn Farb, hc, the high bidder. The Italian Villa in Tuscany, Italy sold three times and the Napa Valley trip, made this event the highest grossing in HGI’s history. Denis Debakey, Lavonne Cox, Zarine and Dr. Meherwan Boyce, Don Hooper and Rachel Palmer Hooper, Dr. William (Bill) and Teresa Reading, Board Member Lily Foster and husband Charles, Indrani and Hemant Goradia, and others filled this sold out event.
The raffle items, which also contributed to the evenings’ success, included a stunning mink hat from Sakowitz Furs, a super Lexus Package. George Demeris of Demeris Catering, provided a scrumptious dinner, and a totally decadent chocolate dessert.
When the program was over, all remained seated, continuing to enjoy the atmosphere and conversations. Guests slowly made their way to the reception room for brandy and chocolate on the fabulous, statue clad and fall-flower covered patio, and it did not take long before an after party was born. Guests are already on board for next year, and the planning has begun.