June xx, 2023: A constellation of stars, including Tony and Four-time Emmy Award-winning actor and activist David Hyde Pierce, and Grammy Award-winning artist and producer Q-Tip, of A Tribe Called Quest shone brightly at CaringKind’s 27th annual Forget-Me-Not Gala on Monday, June 12th, at the iconic Pierre Hotel in NYC.
CaringKind raised an astonishing 1.3 million towards supporting the organization’s mission. All proceeds of the event benefited CaringKind. CaringKind is New York City’s leading expert on Alzheimer’s and dementia caregiving. PURIST and Schneps Media served as media sponsors for the evening.
A multitude of esteemed sponsors from various sectors joined forces to make this glamorous event a remarkable success. Visionary Level Sponsors included Elaine Thomas and Joseph Healey, while Trailblazer Sponsors featured The Bristal, 305 West End Assisted Living, Coterie Hudson Yards, Kathy Ferguson & Mark Zurack, Inspir, KPMG, Linda LaGorga, and Tami Schneider.
Prominent Leader Sponsors counted Sandra Baron & Gregory Diskant, Biogen, Michelle Walker & Steve Boxer & The Boxer Family Foundation, Eisai, Jeffrey N. Jones, Sharon Kilmer, The Shami Family, and Lilly among their ranks. Pioneer Sponsors for this year’s highly-anticipated Forget-Me-Not event included Betsy Billard, BioVie, Bloomberg Philanthropies, Jane & William Brachfeld, Betty Brennan, Cure Alzheimer’s Fund, CareAbout Health, Gayatri Devi, MD, The 80th Street Residence, Elderhood, Pam and Jon Henes, Paul Weiss, The Hirsh Family, Kirkland & Ellis, LCB Senior Living, Alan Patricof, Q-Tip, Renewal Memory Partners, Social Impact Partners, United Federation of Teachers, and The Watermark. The attendees captured cherished memories with Beacon40 as the phenomenal Photo Booth Sponsor.
David Hyde Pierce, who received the Tony’s Isabelle Stevenson Award for his longtime advocacy and support for Alzheimer’s care and research, served as the Master of Ceremonies for the evening. Guests anticipated an unforgettable experience, beginning with a cocktail reception at 6:30 pm, followed by dinner, a special presentation by Reverberation, an inspiring awards ceremony, and a live auction. Pearl Scarlett Gold, actor, singer, and dancer who is currently performing in Leopoldstadt on Broadway gave a special dedication to Tony Bennett and his family by singing a medley of Tony Bennett songs. The festivities closed with an exclusive afterparty that started at 9:30 pm.
At the cocktail reception, Spotlight Kids, a group of gifted young artists, brought their unique blend of song, dance, and theater to the reception, providing an unforgettable experience for attendees while elevating awareness for Alzheimer’s and dementia care.
At the Gala, CaringKind honored three outstanding individuals and groups for their significant contributions to the Alzheimer’s community. Honorees included:
- Peter Gabriel, Anna Gabriel and Michael Hermann were honored as cofounders of their media and tech studio, Reverberation, for their unwavering commitment and contribution to music and its impact on cognitive health. Reverberation develops scientifically rooted musical interventions to solve systemic and chronic global issues. They are closely partnered with several world-class research institutions, scientists, musicians, technologists, and media companies. They were honored with the “Commitment to Music and Brain Health Award.”
- Gayatri Devi, MD Director of Park Avenue Neurology, Clinical Professor of Neurology and Psychiatry at Zucker School of Medicine, and an Attending Physician at Lenox Hill Hospital | Northwell Health, was honored for her groundbreaking work on Alzheimer’s as a spectrum disorder, allowing patients with Alzheimer’s to continue to be productive members of society, from artists to professionals. In recognition of her transformative work, Dr. Devi received the “Innovation in Healthcare and Biosciences Award.” Anderson Cooper, CNN reporter and personality introduced Doctor Devi’s award with an introductory video.
- Q-Tip is a Grammy Award-winning artist renowned for his innovative beats and impactful lyrics. Q-Tip’s work has been instrumental in bridging cultural, linguistic, and generational gaps, demonstrating the unparalleled power of music as a unifying force. Inspired by his personal experience as a caregiver to his mother who lives with Alzheimer’s, Q-Tip has created a heartfelt musical playlist in her honor. In recognition of his profound impact and dedication to raising awareness, Q-Tip was presented with the “Caregiver Awareness Award.”
The 27th Annual Forget-Me-Not Gala was an evening of celebration and inspiration that strengthened the resolve of CaringKind and its supporters in their ongoing mission to provide essential Alzheimer’s care and support to those facing the challenges of this devastating disease.
Funds raised from the Forget-Me-Not Gala bolstered CaringKind’s mission: providing vital resources, support, and education to families affected by Alzheimer’s and dementia, as well as furthering groundbreaking research in Alzheimer’s and dementia care.
The gala showcased Dr. Li-Huei Tsai’s significant discovery at MIT on the positive effect of 40Hz light and sound exposure for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease.
Dr. Li-Huei Tsai, Ph.D., Picower Professor and Director of The Picower Institute for Learning and Memory at MIT, shared her enthusiasm: “We are thrilled so many people are excited about our discovery at MIT that specific 40Hz light and sound exposure could be a safe, non-invasive therapy for Alzheimer’s disease. While more clinical testing and fundamental research are needed and underway, our approach shows clear promise. We’re proud to be working on behalf of patients and caregivers to meet this urgent health need.”
CaringKind’s mission is to create, deliver and promote comprehensive and compassionate care and support services for individuals and families affected by Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. The organization achieves its mission by providing programs and services for individuals with dementia, their families, and professional caregivers. CaringKind is also committed to generating public awareness, collaborating with research centers, and informing public policy through advocacy.
In 2022, CaringKind responded to 5,400 helpline calls, initiated 1,285 social work consultations, and hosted 90 different support groups facilitated by trained leaders both virtually and in person.
This year’s Gala featured celebrated comedian Seth Herzog as the auctioneer, along with the captivating Lydia Fenet, CEO and founder of Lydia Fenet Agency, who led the Paddle Raise. Exceptional auction lots were auctioned at the Gala.
Among the notables who attended the event are Q-Tip, David Hyde-Pierce, Alan Patricof, Susan Benedetto, Gayatri Devi, Anna Gabriel, Patricia Duff, Heather Berlin, Montgomery Frazier, Ben Mindich, Eleonora Tornatore-Mikesh, John Moore, Consuelo Vanderbilt Costin, George Vradenburg, Anne Fontaine, Florence Fabricant, Richard Edelman, Claudia Romo Edelman, Gillian Tett, Peter Frishauf, Tamryn Shami, Frederick Anderson and Commissioner Lorraine Vásquez-Cortez.
For further information about the Forget-Me-Not Gala, including donations, please visit www.caringkindnyc.org/gala or contact Courtney Dawson at 646-744-2932 or CDawson@cknyc.org.
CaringKind* is New York City’s leading expert on Alzheimer’s and dementia caregiving. With over 40 years of experience, CaringKind works directly with its community partners to develop the information, tools, and training to support individuals and families affected by dementia. They offer a CaringKind Helpline (646) 744-2900 run by professional staff; individual and family counseling sessions with licensed social workers; a vast network of support groups; education seminars and training programs; early-stage services and a wanderer’s safety program. CaringKind believes in the power of caregiving and seeks a world where everyone dealing with dementia has the support they need when they need it.
*Formerly Known As Alzheimer’s Association, New York City Chapter.
About Eleonora Tornatore-Mikesh, CEO
With nearly two decades of experience in senior living and health care, Eleonora Tornatore-Mikesh has revolutionized long-term care, residential living, and memory care centers throughout her illustrious career. As a former CEO of the Alzheimer’s Association’s Connecticut Chapter, Mrs. Tornatore-Mikesh achieved remarkable milestones during her 7.5 years at the helm. Under her transformative leadership, she more than doubled the organization’s revenue and spearheaded statewide dementia training initiatives that reached over 140 facilities, all in collaboration with the Department of Labor.
Beyond her operational achievements, Eleonora has been a trailblazer in early-stage care. Her tenacious drive led to the creation of a statewide early-stage group while also securing much-needed funding for the state. Fully dedicated to enriching knowledge and improving industry standards, Eleonora held the position of chairperson at the Connecticut Assisted Living Association (CALA), where she developed an Executive Director course with a comprehensive, statewide curriculum.
Demonstrating a relentless pursuit of excellence, Mrs. Tornatore-Mikesh served as a representative for CALA on the Department of Public Health committee for seven years. There, she pursued crucial revisions of regulations for assisted living and contributed to the Institute of Senior Living Education. Earning well-deserved recognition, Eleonora has been named to the 2022 City & State Health Care Power List 100 for the second consecutive year. This prestigious list honors key public health officials, hospital executives, labor leaders, and activists making a positive impact within the healthcare sector.
Currently, as President and CEO of CaringKind, Eleonora Tornatore-Mikesh continues to break new ground in Alzheimer’s caregiving. Her unwavering commitment to championing quality care, advancing education, and driving innovation makes her a true leader and visionary in her field.