An emotional tribute to a beloved wife and mother lost to breast cancer 12 years ago was the catalyst for an outpouring of both tears and donations at Susan G. Komen Orange County’s 10th annual Pink Tie Ball, held last weekend at AV Irvine.
Father and son duo, Harald Herrmann and 20-year-old Austin, touched the hearts of the nearly 550 guests and helped raise more than $700,000 for local breast health care services and groundbreaking research.
Themed “Carrying the Promise into the Future,” the signature event marked the nonprofit’s 25th anniversary as a local Affiliate. It was also the most successful Pink Tie Ball to-date.
The sold out-fundraiser was filled with many special touches, including the gift of a bronze calla lily that each guest received from the Herrmann family to memorialize Kathie Herrmann. The flower, commissioned by artist Jerome Gastaldi, symbolized the frailty of life and power of a promise: a world without breast cancer.
Newport Beach Resident Julie Ann Ulcickas, a former Tournament of Roses Princess, served as co-chair along with
Denis Kalscheur, Khanh T. Tran, and the Herrmanns.
It was Harald Herrmann who, along with Ulcickas, launched the Pink Tie Ball after losing his wife to breast cancer in 2004.
The event mobilized dedicated supporters and educated guests on the impact Komen Orange County’s critical work has made in Orange County over the last quarter century. Seven prominent businessmen also were named Pink Tie Guys – a title given every year to men who promote breast cancer awareness within the business world and the community.
The distinguished men join 70 others chosen over the last ten years as Pink Tie Guys. They are Reginald Gilyard, dean, Chapman University’s Argyros School of Business; Craig Glorioso, shareholder of Real Estate Practice, Greenberg Traurig; Douglas S. Ingram, CEO, Chase Pharmaceuticals Corporation; Lupillo Ramirez, MBA, hispanic product/private label and differentiation director, Northgate Markets; Mark Rutherford, senior vice president, human resources, First American Financial Corporation; Philippe Schaison, EVP and president, Allergan Medical; and Joe Stein, consultant, Simply Innovative.
Attendees included Orange County community and corporate leaders, breast cancer survivors, Komen Orange County Pink Tie Guys and breast health advocates.
Guests walked a pink carpet and enjoyed pink cocktails before a sunset reception. Hors d’oeuvres were kindly donated by Newport’s own Bluewater Grill, a Pink Tie Ball donor since the event’s inception.
Dinner was prepared by 24 Carrots Catering and Events. The event went smoothly thanks to the hard work of more than 150 Komen Orange County volunteers.
The inspiring gala also included silent and live auction items and one-of-a-kind experiences contributed by local
businesses and Komen supporters.
The opportunity drawing donated by Black, Starr & Frost and Kendra Scott (both with boutiques in Newport Beach) valued at $7,160 included several fine jewelry pieces.
The Ignite Your Promise pledges raised more than $180,000. Additional funds were raised through sponsorships, ticket sales and other opportunities during the gala.
In addition to the Pink Tie Ball, Komen Orange County hosts additional annual initiatives, including ongoing breast health outreach in Orange County and major fundraising events such as Race for the Cure, to be held Sunday, Sept. 25, at Fashion Island in Newport Beach. The early bird registration price of $25 will end on June 30.
To register or for more information, visit komenoc.org.