Dinner Raises $425,000 to Support Blindness Research
(New York, NY) – The Foundation Fighting Blindness (FFB), the world’s leading private funder of research aimed at preventing, treating and curing blindness caused by inherited retinal diseases hosted its annual Fashion and Finance Ball on Tuesday, May 16 at New York’s Plaza Hotel. To date, the dinner has raised $425,000 for inherited retinal disease research and donations are continuing to be made.
Inherited retinal diseases, including retinitis pigmentosa and macular degeneration, affect more than 10 million Americans and millions more worldwide. The FFB funds research by vision experts around the world in the search for cures including support for 150 researchers at 61 institutions.
The dinner chair was Mr. Evan Mittman; Co-chair was Ms. Brenda Palmer. Mittman is a member of the Foundation Fighting Blindness Board of Directors. He is the former chief executive of Cipriani, the fashion accessories company.
“I was honored to chair this special event and humbled by the participation of so many leaders from the fashion and finance industries. The research on cures for blindness caused by inherited retinal diseases is making tremendous progress. With the help of people who attended this year’s ball we can move this research even closer to the finish line,” said Mittman.
Palmer is an industry leading business consultant in brand development, extensions and licensing. Before creating her own consultancy, she held marketing and executive positions at Ralph Lauren, Liz Claiborne, Jordache, Coach, Nautica and Reebok.
The evening’s emcee was Heather Thomson, founder of Yummie by Heather Thomson and a former member of the cast of Real Housewives of New York.
Richard Richman, the chairman and founder of The Richman Group, Inc., and Deidre Quinn, the CEO and Co-Founder of Lafayette 148, received the Foundation’s Visionary Award during the dinner event.
The Richman Group is the 7th largest apartment complex owner in the U.S. with nearly 1,400 housing properties in 49 states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Richman has been recognized by the National Housing Conference as its Developer of the Year and by the Urban League of Southwest Connecticut for the Richman Group’s commitment to diversity.
Richman is a member of the Dean’s Council of Columbia Law School, serves on the Board of Overseers of the Columbia University Graduate School of Business, and the Board of the University of Pennsylvania’s Urban Research Institute. Mr. Richman is also a Trustee of NYU Langone Health System. Through a family foundation, he and his wife Ellen established the Columbia University Richman Center for Business, Law and Public Policy.
Deirdre Quinn is the CEO and co-founder of Lafayette 148 New York, a women’s apparel company named after the Soho Street where it is headquartered. Lafayette 148 New York designs for the modern, accomplished woman. Lafayette 148 clothing is known for its quality, style and fit; pieces that provide women confident solutions to their wardrobe needs.
Quinn serves on the Board of the School of Dreams, an elementary school near Lafayette 148’s production facility in Shantou, China, serves on the Board of Trustees of the Fashion Institute of Technology and is an Associate Partner with the Partnership for NYC.
The evening’s principals are available for interview upon request.
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The Foundation Fighting Blindness was established in 1971. It has since raised more than $700 million for research aimed at preventing, treating and curing blindness caused by retinal degenerative diseases. In excess of 10 million Americans, and millions more worldwide, experience vision loss due to retinal degeneration. Through its support of focused and innovative science, the Foundation drives the research that has and will continue to provide treatments and cures for people affected by retinitis pigmentosa, macular degeneration, Usher syndrome and other inherited retinal diseases.
For more information: www.FightBlindness.org