Thank you for supporting the Children’s Institute at the 2023 Gala!

May 10, 2023
Pilar Padilla

Thanks to you, we raised $1,050,000 (and counting) for our LA communities! It’s not just a number; it’s hope for 30,000 children and families across our city.

We are deeply grateful to all of you who attended and contributed to our 5th Annual Cape & Gown Gala last night. With the shared goal of creating a more just and equitable Los Angeles, we are thrilled to have raised direct support for programs that create community resilience, thriving families, and healthy children.

We honored four truly heroic individuals:

Paul Kanin, introduced by his three children Maralee, Matt and Max Kanin, was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award for his decades of service to his Los Angeles community as well as many years serving as a trustee and Chair of Children’s Institute’s Board of Trustees.

Anthony “Top Dawg” Tiffith, introduced by Watts Gang Task Force President Donny Joubert and TDE executive Brandon Tiffith, received the Community Champion award for his tireless efforts in his beloved Watts Community.

Derrick Rossi, PhD, introduced by Rob Reiner, received the Children’s Champion Award for his innovative work in stem cell biology and mRNA technology as co-founder of Moderna, saving millions of lives world-wide.

Gelila Assefa Puck, introduced by Wolfgang Puck, received the Children’s Champion Award for her international efforts to provide hope and opportunity to children and families, including through her organization Dream for Future Africa Foundation and as a member of Children’s Institute’s Board of Trustees.

Emceed by actor, director and activist Rob Reiner, the evening featured inspiring stories from CII staff, community members and supporters. Thank you to our incredible Children’s Institute speaker, Adianna Paul, who joined CII’s program for transitional aged foster youth when she was 17 and received the support and mentorship she needed to follow her dreams. Watch Adianna’s incredible journey here. An exciting Live Auction and Fund-a-Future campaign hosted by Emmy winning host Liam Mayclem provided guests the opportunity to take home some fabulous experiences in support of CII’s programs and services. The evening came to a close with an awe-inspiring performance from the LA Inner City Mass Choir.

On behalf of Children’s Institute, thank you to everyone who sponsored, supported and participated in the event.