JFS Perspectives

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Thank You to Guests for Celebrating the Many Faces of JFS

Thank You to Guests for Celebrating the Many Faces of JFS

Guests enjoying the food stationsMore than 350 people joined us last week at the Grand Hyatt to pay tribute to Gay Curtiss-Lusher and Sam Zaitz at the “Faces of JFS” fundraiser. Everyone enjoyed the festive party, complete with cocktails, delicious international food stations and passed hors d’oeuvres, a photo opportunity from A Custom Look, and upbeat entertainment by Spinphony.

Shepard Nevel addressing the audienceAfter an hour of mingling, guests took their seats for a brief program. Co-chairs Ben Lusher and Stephanie Zaitz welcomed everyone and thanked event sponsors and the committee. JFS president and CEO Shepard Nevel shared more about the agency, who it serves, and what is planned for 2018.

Gay and Sam with awardsBoard chair Charlie Gwirtsman and vice chair Leanna Harris then took the stage to present Sam Zaitz with the inaugural Yana Vishnitsky Leadership Award and Gay Curtiss-Lusher with the Joyce and Kal Zeff Humanitarian Award. The honorees graciously received their awards to much applause and standing ovations as they were recognized for their outstanding work in the community on behalf of JFS.

Actor portrayalA highlight of the evening was the poignant live portrayal of three JFS clients by professional actors, who showed how each life was forever changed thanks to JFS:

  • Darwin got a new job and a second lease on life with help from the JFS Family Safety Net program.
  • Thanks to the Senior Solutions program at JFS, Sara, a Holocaust survivor, is receiving the care and support she needs to thrive in her new Denver home.
  • With a little help from SHALOM Denver, Kalin’s developmental disability hasn’t stopped him from getting meaningful employment and contributing to our community.

The actors were then joined on stage by the actual clients, who were met with tears, applause, and another standing ovation.

Event co-chairsThanks to the hard work of co-chairs Jeremy Abelson, Stephanie Zaitz, Ben Lusher, and Barry Curtiss-Lusher, the event committee, and our honorees, this event netted nearly $375,000!

A special thank-you to all the wonderful community-minded individuals, organizations, and corporations that supported the agency through this event.

View more event photos by Photography by Avital, A Custom Look, and Blacktie-Colorado!


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