“It’s great to be back! were the sentiments resonated throughout the evening celebrating 60 years of Villaand Anniversary. You need a villa The Blue & White Gala took place on Saturday April 30 at the Langham Huntington Hotel. The evening was a great success with 175 attendees raising $300,000 in support of Villa Esperanza programs and services for children, adults and seniors with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Former Board Member and Capital Campaign Co-Chair Lisa Sloan presented Patty Zuber with the Guardian Angel Award for her leadership and fierce commitment to the children, adults and seniors of Villa. “Patty is a doer and isn’t shy about stepping into any role needed,” Sloan explained. “She rolls up her sleeves and always leads with grace and dignity. Patty was described as indispensable and the person to turn to in the event of a problem. She values an emphasis on FUN and brings humor and creativity to everything she does. Patty graciously accepted the award and was quick to share the award with everyone in the room reminding us “it takes all of us, a village or in this case a villa”.
The evening program, hosted by San Marino Tribune editor Mitch Lehman, began with a touching personal story about Lehman’s brother, Gary, who was born with Down syndrome and their close relationship over the years. Lehman shared how his brother brought a lot of joy and wealth to their family. He referenced the song “He’s not heavy, he’s my brother” when talking about his brother and then thanked everyone who considered people with special needs as his brother too.
After dinner, Mitch took the stage and served as auctioneer and entertainer, creating laughs and raising money for Villa’s programs. Committee members for the event included Taylor Casillas, Kathy Cunningham, Sheela Gade, Susan Jackson, Lia Peterson Miller, Marcie Robinson, Sarah Soifer, Casey Solomon, Maryann Seduski, Liz Seitz and Melissa Wu.
Villa Esperanza Services, established in 1961, is a non-profit organization dedicated to the care and education of children, adults and seniors with intellectual, developmental and other disabilities. Villa offers nine programs including a school for children up to the age of 22; a speech therapy center and an occupational therapy clinic offering comprehensive therapies to children, adults and the elderly; employment services; adult day programs; and adult residences in Pasadena. To learn more about Villa’s collaborative approach, log on to www.VillaEsperanzaServices.org.