Hillsides, a Southern California mental health and foster care agency, raised more than $470,000 during its first-ever Virtual Gala, Raising Hope, which was live-streamed on February 27, 2021 via YouTube.
Hundreds of supporters tuned in to view the live broadcast that benefits the 17,000 children, youth, and families Hillsides serves. Raising Hope was chaired by Hillsides’ President and CEO Emeritus Joseph R. Costa, who is retiring in June after more than 11 years of service to Hillsides. Portions of the show were recorded and available for viewing at our event site.
Highlights of the program included a welcome message from Sir Elton John, a live auction emceed by retired NBC4 weathercaster Fritz Coleman, and after-show performances by Nancy Wilson of Heart and Davey Johnstone and John Mahon of the Elton John Band. Costa was also presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award for his 30-plus years of public service by new Hillsides President and CEO Stacey Roth.
During the live auction portion of the program, guests bid on many exciting packages, including vacation packages to New York, Montana, and Mexico, celebrity meet-and-greets, and lavish dinner packages. The program also included touching video stories of clients who have received services from our Family Resource Centers and Youth Moving On program.
The gala was made possible by many generous sponsors, including the lead sponsor The Donald Zonshine Family Foundation. The other major sponsors are Willis Towers Watson, Ayrshire Foundation, Claudia Calandrino, Don and Sally Clark, The H. Leslie & Elaine S. Hoffman Foundation, Kim and Rob Shepherd, Sherm and Marge Telleen, and Western Asset Management.
The gala committee consisted of Honorary Gala Chair Joseph M. Costa, Edison Barbosa, Armida Baylon-Stelzer, Cathy Brennan, Donna De Mond, Bill Eichler, John S. Gong, Bernie Gore, Katie Hamrick, Ava Herrera, Stacey Hoppe, Sara Jennings, Ana Maarse, Pamela Mahon, Susan Noce, Susan Pinsky, Sara J. Simpson, Lyn Spector, Maureen Staley, Chelisa Vagim, Uyen-Uyen Vo, Kim Weleba.
Hillsides, with its affiliate Bienvenidos, is dedicated to healing children and young adults, strengthening families, and transforming communities through quality comprehensive services and advocacy. Headquartered in Los Angeles, the agency serves over 17,000 children and families in Southern California throughout more than 40 sites, including school-based mental health offices in Los Angeles, Pasadena, and Baldwin Park. Foster care and adoptions services are offered in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, and San Bernardino Counties. To learn more about Hillsides, please visit www.Hillsides.org. Visit Hillsides on Facebook @hillsideschildren, on Twitter @Hillsides, or on Instagram @HillsidesPasadena.