Panache Privee

I Have A Dream Foundation Spring Gala

Honorees and presenters: Lois Steans, Sandra Erdelac, Harrison Steans, Brian Smith, Sheila C. Johnson, April Richards, Eugene M. Lang, Tracy Proctor, George Kettle, Kara Forte, Donna Orender, and Llewellyn P. Haden, Jr.

In this season of graduations and celebrating educational achievement, the “I Have a Dream” Foundation® (IHAD) paid tribute to the pioneers, supporters, and leaders in the national “I Have a Dream” movement and its “Dreamers” – the students served by the foundation through its mission to help at-risk youth stay in school and reach their education and career dreams.  Hosted by Tim Gunn of television's Project Runway, over 300 friends of IHAD gathered at the 2007 Spring Gala on May 8 at the Rainbow Room.

Founded by New York City businessman, Eugene M. Lang, the “I Have a Dream” Foundation® adopts classes of children from housing developments or schools in low-income neighborhoods and provides them with long-term mentoring, tutoring, cultural enrichment and college tuition assistance upon graduation from high school.

This year, IHAD honored Sheila Johnson, education philanthropist and co-founder of Black Entertainment Television, with the Eugene M. Lang Lifetime Achievement Award. Other honorees included Harrison Steans, who adopted 38 sixth graders from the Lathrop Homes Housing Project in Chicago in 1986 as well as George Kettle for his work starting the first “I Have a Dream” Program in Washington DC in 1987.

Honorary chairs for the event included IHAD founder and chairman emeritus Eugene M. Lang, Senator Frank R. Lautenberg, Bette Midler, Hon. Charles B. Rangel, Senator Charles E. Schumer, and Donna Shalala, president of the University of Miami. WNBA president Donna Orender served as Gala chair.

The gala concluded with a special performance by Broadway's Brian Stokes Mitchell, who performed the song, “The Impossible Dream.”

Honoree Dr. Sheila C. Johnson, and IHAD founder and chairman emeritus, Eugene Lang.

Dreamer Award honoree April Richards and her “I Have a Dream” sponsor,
George Kettle.

IHAD interim president and CEO, Kara Forte (center) with  Eugene M. Lang (right) and his wife, Theresa.

Gala host Tim Gunn.

"Sponsor” Harrison Steans, and his “Dreamer” Sandra Erdelac.

Incoming IHAD  president & CEO, Iris Chen with IHAD Board treasurer Kenneth Lewis.

IHAD board member Frank Liddell and IHAD chairman Llewellyn P. Haden, Jr.

Tony Award winner Brian Stokes Mitchell.

Photos: Star Black
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