Portland, OR. It was high-fives all around as Children’s Cancer Association (CCA) raised $1.4 million at its 17th annual Wonderball gala on October 7th. Leaders Rosemary Colliver, founder Regina Ellis and Andy Lytle celebrated the donations which will fuel CCA’s mission of prescribing joy to seriously ill children and their families. Organizers welcomed nearly 850 supporters to the Oregon Convention Center for an “Age of Aquarius” themed night they say was inspired by the abundant love and optimism of the Woodstock era.
Singer-songwriter, Kyle Craft, sings Bob Dylan’s The Times They Are A-Changin’ and is joined onstage by CCA-served kids and teens.
Regina Ellis, CCA Founder & Chief Joy Officer, stops to thank raffle ticket sellers, Moxie and Aven.
Albert Menashe, CCA Board Member, Attorney & Shareholder at Gevurtz Menashe; Julie Menashe; Grant Feltz, Wieden+Kennedy; John Christianson, Estate Planning Attorney at Gevurtz Menashe
Andrea Corradini, CCA Board Member, Senior Director, Women’s NSW Footwear at Nike; Regina Ellis, CCA Founder & Chief Joy Officer
Party guests included Sandy Bodecker, VP Special Projects, Nike Inc.; Tanya Cerda; Cholee Thompson, Ryan Artists; David Brown, longtime CCA Chemo Pal; and their friends.
Andy Lytle, CCA Board Chair, Division VP – Western US at Jackson Family Wines; Jim Haven, Creative Director; Jessi Duley, CCA Board Member, Founder & Instructor at Burn Cycle; Mary Lytle
Keynote speakers, Andy and Ruth Soria Zuniga, share their family’s story with Wonderball guests.
Chris Funk, CCA Board Member and multi-instrumentalist with The Decemberists, starts the show with a guitar solo guests call, thrilling.
Party guests included Clare Hamill, CCA Founding Board Chair, Vice President, Nike Growth Initiatives at Nike; Heidi O’Neill, President, Direct to Consumer, Nike Inc.; Patrick O’Neill; Marcus Harvey, Owner, Portland Gear; Sarah Marshall, MyMusicRx ATX Champion; and their friends.
Paul Gulick, CCA Board Chair Emeritus, 2008-10, and his table guests
Lead Sponsor PDX Property Group filled the table with guests that included John Powers, CCA Ambassador Board Co-Chair, Broker of PDX Property Group at Keller Williams Realty and Chris Suarez, Principal Broker, CEO of PDX Property Group of Keller Williams.
Presenting Sponsor, Regence Blue Cross Blue Shield’s table, which included Scott Burton, Director, Revenue Management & Portfolio Positioning, Cambia Solutions; Angela Dowling, President, Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon, and Chief Sales Officer; and their guests.
Jeff Nyburg, Regional Director at Carter’s | OshKosh B’gosh; CS Sheffield, CCA Ambassador Board Co-Chair, Senior Therapeutic Specialty Consultant, Pfizer Oncology; Jennifer Nyburg; Angela Sheffield.
CCA staff members welcome guests at registration amid tapestries and Wonderball branded prayer flags.
Macie House, CCA Board Member, Managing Director, Baird, Regina Ellis, CCA Founder & Chief Joy Officer; Suzann Baricevic Murphy, CCA Board Member, Owner/President at (W)here Inc.
Steve Blake, CCA Board Member and former NBA Player; Regina Ellis, CCA Founder & Chief Joy Officer; Kristen Blake, Health & Wellness Coach
Serene Perkins,(center) CCA Board Member, Director of Surgical and Clinical Research, Legacy Research Institute Legacy Health, Regina Ellis, CCA Founder & Chief Joy Officer
Served by CCA as a teen and now a pre-med student at PSU, Sarah Florig shared her emotional story with Wonderball guests.
Guests enjoyed silent and live auctions, a seated dinner, inspiring family speakers and live, Woodstock era music throughout the night. Portland jam band frontman Lewi Longmire’s LT Red and the Hazy Visions kicked off the live performances, which included a rendition of Jimi Hendrix’s “Star-Spangled Banner” performed by Chris Funk of The Decemberists. Other performers included Brandon Nicolai and New York-based cabaret singer Amber Martin.
Décor included Indian tapestries, marigold garlands, and buttons and prayer flags with the reimagined protest slogan “Cancer is not Healthy for Children and Other Living Things”. A Moroccan menu and Summer of Love themed drinks were served to complete the aesthetic. Late night revelers also enjoyed an after-party with DJ Anjali at Spirit of 77.
A record-breaking paddle raise was led by auctioneer Kelly Russell of Artisan Auctions following Regina Ellis’ keynote speech and PSU pre-med student, Sarah Florig’s, inspiring story. CCA-served family, Ruth and Andy Soria Zuniga, also shared the many ways CCA has supported their family during their 2-year-old daughter’s treatment.
“At CCA, we are JOY seekers. For the last 22 years, we have asked ourselves repeatedly: what can JOY do?” said Regina Ellis, Founder and Chief Joy Officer of Children’s Cancer Association in her address. “We are the only organization working to position JOY as best practice in pediatric hospitals across the nation by delivering innovative programs that transform a moment with music, friendship and nature. Because of the generosity in this room, last year we served 31 percent more children and teens, how, when and where they preferred, and delivered over 92,000 service interactions across the United States.”
This event was made possible by the presenting sponsor, Regence BlueCross Blue Shield of Oregon. Additional sponsors included PDX Property Group and Randall Children’s Hospital at Legacy Emanuel.
About Children’s Cancer Association (CCA)
The Children’s Cancer Association knows that for seriously ill children and their families every moment is precious. That’s why our programs leverage music, friendship, play, and resources to create transformative moments of joy for 20,000 children, teens, and their family members each year. We believe kids deserve long, wonderful lives. Or at the very least, short wonderful lives. Unlike many organizations dedicated to the worthy goal of someday finding a cure for cancer, CCA is all about creating joy today. See our programs in action at JoyRx.org.
Portland, OR. The Children’s Cancer Association (CCA) welcomed nearly 800 of their most passionate supporters on September 24th to the 16th annual Wonderball. Analia Earhart, CCA Board Member; Regina Ellis, CCA Founder and Chief Joy Officer; and Jani Iverson, VP, Stand for Children enjoyed the star-studded Havana-themed nightclub experience that raised more than $1.3 million to further CCA’s mission of delivering joy to seriously ill children and their families. Billed as ¡El Baile! (The Dance!), and presented by Regence BlueCross BlueShield, the evening celebrated the vibrant colors, sounds, flavors, and styles of 1950s Havana. (Photo credit, Megan Henson)
Mary and Andy Lytle, CCA Board Chair & Division VP of Western US, Jackson Family Wines
Jeff and Susie Perkins, Andrea Corradini, (CCA Board Member & Women’s Global Senior Footwear Product Director, Nike Sportwear) and David Brown
Regina Ellis, CCA Founder and Chief Joy Officer; Ron and Lynn Penner-Ash, Penner-Ash Wine Cellars; Pieter De Temmerman, CEO, Pacific Data Partners
Tony Starlight, The Starella Sisters and Melao de Cuba get the Havana nightclub-themed party started
Tanya Cerda and Sandy Boedecker, VP Special Projects, Nike
Party guests included Scott Burton, CCA Board Member and Director of Community & Business Relations for Presenting Sponsor – Regence BlueCross BlueShield; Mark Mantei, CEO, Vancouver Clinic; Angela Dowling, President, Regence BlueCross BlueShield; and Sam Burton.
Foundation; David Lucas, Executive Director, Maurice Lucas Foundation; and Kaylyn Jones, Nike
Michelle DeCourcy, CCA Ambassador Board Member and Fashion Designer; and Seann McKeel, MyMusicRx Champion & Creative Director, You Who Rock Show for Kids
Wonderball Lead Partner, Thrivent Mutual Funds fills a table.
Keynote speaker, John Grothe, is the head PGA professional at Willamette Valley Golf Club. His family was served by CCA in 2014.
Chris Funk, The Decemberists; Abby Guyer, CCA VP of Brand; Andy Lytle, CCA Board Chair and Division VP – Western US Jackson Family Wines
Paul Schneider, owner, TWIST; Clare Hamill, CCA Founding Board Chair and VP Global Growth Initiatives, Nike; Doug Fish, President, Fish Marketing; and Morgan Dance
Wonderball Celebration Partner, Alaska Airlines was in the house. Pictured are Sana Gebarin (Horizon Air), Susie Desmond, Liz Skayhan (Alaska Airlines), Lou Ames (Horizon Airlines), Brad Lambert (Horizon Air), Gabby Lambert, Kaylyn Jones (Nike), and David Lucas (Maurice Lucas Foundation)
Katherine Durham, CCA Board Member and Chief Marketing Officer and VP, Individual Disability Insurance, The Standard; and Brad Durham
Latin American singer and songwriter, Edna Vasquez, along with Melao de Cuba, close out the evening
Albert Menashe, CCA Board Member, Co-Founder and Senior Shareholder, Gevurtz and Menashe; Regina Ellis, CCA Founder and Chief Joy Officer; and Michael Preisz, President & Founder, Preisz Financial
Sarah and Cedric Berry; Allison Clarke, CCA Ambassador Board Co-Chair, President, Allison Clarke Consulting; and Todd Dickens
Guests were treated to live music from Son de Cuba, classic cars on display from the Portland Roadster Show, and Cuban-themed food and drink. Tony Starlight, ¡El Baile! nightclub host, channeled Desi Arnaz for a festive conga solo and, along with dancers The Starella Sisters, introduced high energy performances from Melao de Cuba Orquesta, tap dancer Tony Palomino, salsa dancers Jennie Fremont & Rob Hilario, and a special guest appearance by Latin American singer-songwriter, Edna Vazquez, to close out the night.
“For 21 years CCA’s programs have been provided at no cost and today, we serve over 20,000 kids and their families annually,” said Regina Ellis, Founder and Chief Joy Officer of the Children’s Cancer Association in her address. “Make no mistake. With the power of JOY, we are out to change the world.”
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