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By Vanessa Showalter                              Photography courtesy of Vanessa Showalter and Susan Haraikawa

“We hope to put Susan G. Komen out of business soon by finding a cure,” declared Harald Herrmann, the special honoree at the 6th Annual Pink Tie Ball held last Saturday at the historic Festival of Arts/Pageant of the Masters in Laguna Beach.

Approximately 400 attendees helped raise $360,000 (net) to provide vital breast health services for uninsured and underserved women in Orange County.  Susan G. Komen for the Cure is a non-profit organization dedicated to ending breast cancer at every stage from the causes to the cures.

“Our ultimate goal is to first help women at every stage of the breast cancer journey and second, to let these women understand that they are not alone,” said Lisa Wolter, executive director of Susan G. Komen for the Cure – Orange County affiliate. “Unfortunately, breast cancer touches all women, all races, all cultures and all socio- economic groups.  This is why we are so fortunate and grateful to receive such amazing support from individuals and businesses in our community.”

As patrons sampled tantalizing hors d’oeuvres provided by Bluewater Grill and drank pink champagne, the sparkling paper lanterns that hung above illuminated the evening.  The night was electrifying as guests could feel the love, hope and support for this worthy cause.

“We are all here for three common objectives – to raise funds, promote awareness and to find a cure,” said Sue Parks, president of the Susan G. Komen Board of Directors – OC affiliate.  “We are also here to give hope to our mothers, daughters, neighbors and friends and to give thanks to all of our generous supporters.”

The funds raised during this event will be divided accordingly.  Seventy-five percent will be invested in local breast cancer awareness and education programs, medical and diagnostic services for uninsured and underserved women, and other unmet community needs through grants to community breast health organizations in Orange County. The remaining 25 percent will be dedicated to the Komen Award and Research Grant Program, which funds groundbreaking breast cancer research.

During the four-course cuisine (sponsored by Crème de la Crème), the following 2012 Pink Tie Guys were honored at the event for bringing awareness of breast cancer to the forefront of the business world:

  • Bob Abbott (artist known as Jerome Gastaldi) – Fine Art Communication Technologies and artist creator for The Yard House Art Collection
  • Glenn Gray – Sunwest Bank, CEO
  • Dr. Gary Levine – Hoag Breast Center, Director of Radiology
  • John Miller – The Page Group, Executive VP and Partner
  • Kenneth McFarland – Mission Hospital, President and Chief Executive Officer
  • John E. Stratman, Jr. – Kaiser Permanente – Orange County, Director of Public Affairs
  • Scott Wheeler – Experian North America, CFO

The 2012 Pink Tie Ball sponsors included: The Allergan Foundation, The Canaday Group, Harald Herrmann, The Yard House Restaurants, Saks Fifth Avenue, Julia and George Argyros of the Argyros Family Foundation, Kaiser Permanente, Angels Baseball, Experian, First American Financial Corporation, Michael C. Gates (Wells Fargo Wealth Management), Veronica Gray, Sue Parks, Greenberg Traurig, LLC, Haskell & White, LLP, Ingram Micro, MemorialCare Health System, Mission Hospital, OC Fiat, Palmieri, Tyler, Wiener, Wilhelm & Waldron, LLP, Parker Aerospace, Marica Pendjer, John Miller and Coast Magazine.

“I made a promise to my late wife Kathie to help support families struggling with this disease,” said Herrmann.  “We all can make a difference – what we need is your support, passion and resources.”