The New Orleans Advocate
Raintree Children & Family Services made brush the rush. The annual gala, Paint the Town Green, took place in a new venue, Generations Hall, with Deborah Alciatore-Empey (with husband John Empey), Lana Duke and Cindy Paulin (with Ron) as the chairwomen and a committee of 15. More top names are executive director LaShawna Schofield, board President Kenneth Malter, auction committee Chairwoman Olivia Ventola with Chad, master of ceremonies Mike Hoss, and Valero honoree Selah Parra. Valero Energy Foundation was honored for its years of support of Raintree, a “nonprofit agency providing meaningful assistance to children and families in the Greater New Orleans area” and founded in 1926.
Partying started with the patrons, who savored hors d’oeuvres by sponsor Ruth’s Chris Steak House and music by the John Doheny Quartet. At the gala, 15 fine eateries did the catering, providing nourishment as folks perused auction enticements. In the silent one, there was a tremendous variety of items, including modern art, jewelry, and hotel and restaurant experiences. When live bidding got going, a charter fishing trip, a parure from Anton’s Jewelers, a James Michalopoulos giclee, and an all-inclusive trip to Atlanta for a Saints vs. Falcons game revved up the competitive $pirit.
Milling about, and admiring decorations of white gardenias in lit-up flower pots and jars, were James Michalopoulos, Jamie Moreau, Patricia Starnes, Connie and Thomas Kitchen, Dr. and Mrs. Kamran Khoobehi, Joan and LaMarr Ingram, Christine and Price LeBlanc, the David Halperns, the Mann Deynoodts, Cory James, Whitney Armentor, and lots more. Adding the musical momentum were the Wise Guys, who produced “smart” sounds that got everyone on the dance floor.
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