25th Anniversary Gala A Passage to India
Friday, October 14, 2016
Coral Gables Country Club
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2016 Gala

Coral Gables Community Foundation 25th Anniversary Gala ‘A Passage to India’ a Great Success

November 1, 2016

by Jade Lleonart

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (Oct. 17, 2016) –  The Coral Gables Community Foundation celebrated its 25th anniversary at the annual gala, A Passage to India, on Friday, October 14th at the Coral Gables Country Club. Nearly 400 of Miami’s philanthropic, social, civic and business influencers turned out in saris and sherwanis to celebrate the evening’s distinguished honorees and the Foundation’s accomplishments over the past 25 years.

The gala, co-chaired by Sissy DeMaria and Mary Young, was the most successful in organization history, raising funds earmarked for worthy Gables High School students pursuing dreams of a college education among other passionate projects the Foundation champions.

“It was a pleasure to co-chair this year’s 25th Anniversary gala. As a Foundation Board member I see firsthand the good work we do in the community throughout the year. The Indian theme set the tone for a fun and vibrant evening enjoyed by so many of the Gables’ top civic, business and community leaders,” said Sissy DeMaria, gala co-chair.

The evening kicked off as guests received henna tattoos and were treated to a dazzling performance by dancers in authentic Indian costumes presented by FECi. Chef Richard Hutton tempted the notables with a dazzling array of Indian-themed appetizers and dishes. Guests bid on priceless vacations and gifts, including stays at a mountaintop villa in Costa Rica courtesy of NPI, the Rosemary Cottage on exclusive Fisher Island, a sprawling home in Asheville, North Carolina, the Al Capone suite at the Biltmore Hotel, as well as a stunning diamond necklace and earring set by Montica Jewelry.

Armando Codina received the prestigious Legacy Award, Rick and Margarita Tonkinson were awarded the Philanthropy Award, Mayor Dorothy Thomson was honored with the Jerry Santeiro Community Award, Trish and Dan Bell were recipients of the Arts & Culture Award, Robert “Bobby” Martinez received the Education Award and longtime Miami Dolphins player and executive Nat Moore received the Sports & Wellness Award presented by Doctors Hospital and the Miami Orthopedics & Sports Medicine Institute.

“We are so proud of the success of this year’s 25th Anniversary gala! Funds raised will support bright local students attend college through our 4-year Scholarship Program as well as deserving non-profit organizations through our Community Giving initiative,” said Mary Snow, Executive Director of the Coral Gables Community Foundation.

Event sponsors included Platinum Sponsors Southern Audio Visual, Baptist Health South Florida and Doctors Hospital and Trish and Dan Bell; Gold Sponsors Kreps De Maria, Bacardi and Rick and Margarita Tonkinson; Live Entertainment Sponsor: FECi, Valet provided by Mercedes-Benz of Coral Gables; Media Partners South Florida Luxury Guide and the Miami Herald; and In-Kind sponsors The India-U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Pantry Liquors and iZOOM Productions.