The Spirit of East Harlem Gala is is an occasion for supporters to celebrate the impact and contribute toward the success of LSA Family Health Service’s programs for children and families. Founded by the Little Sisters of the Assumption, LSA has been an anchor of the East Harlem community since 1958, serving over 2,000 families annually through health, education and family support programs that strengthen families and help children reach their full potential.
We’re thrilled to announce our 2017 Spirit of East Harlem gala honorees!
Corporate Spirit Award
The Deerfield Foundation
Supporting healthcare initiatives that benefit children from underserved communities and all people that have disease or need healthcare services
Lifetime Spirit Award
Actress, Dancer & Singer
Recipient, Presidential Medal of Freedom
Community Spirit Award
Ralph A. Siciliano, Esq.
LSA Board Member & Former Board Chair, 1987 – present
Partner, Tannenbaum, Helpern, Syracuse & Hirschtritt LLP
As role models and advocates, the honorees at our Spirit of East Harlem gala on October 16th have each made unique contributions to the well-being of families in New York City.
We invite you to join us in celebrating their spirit!
A Tribute to Chita Rivera
Performed by Doreen Montalvo
Guests at the Spirit of East Harlem will enjoy a Tribute to Chita Rivera, featuring songs from her ground-breaking career performed by Doreen Montalvo.
Doreen Montalvo is a theatre/ television/ film performer and recording artist, currently playing Gloria Estefan’s mother “Gloria Fajardo” in the hit Broadway musical “On Your Feet” at the Marquis Theatre. She recently released a solo album “American Soul/ Latin Heart,” a song from which was pre-selected for 2017 Latin Grammy consideration. She was an original cast member of the Tony Award winning “In The Heights,” and is a recipient of a 2007 Drama Desk award for best ensemble.
Broadway Legend Chita Rivera to Receive Lifetime Spirit Award at the Spirit of East Harlem Gala
LSA Family Health Service event expected to raise $1 million for health and education programs for low-income New Yorkers
New York, NY – Broadway legend Chita Rivera will be presented a Lifetime Spirit Award on October 16th at the Spirit of East Harlem gala for LSA Family Health Service. Also being honored that evening are Ralph Siciliano, Esq. and The Deerfield Foundation. The event is expected to raise over a million dollars to improve the health and wellbeing of families living in poverty in East Harlem and surrounding communities.
“I’m thrilled that the Little Sisters of the Assumption (LSA) Family Health Service have chosen to honor me with their Lifetime Spirit Award,” said Ms. Rivera. “This steadfast organization stands for so many things that I believe in—strength of families, diversity, dignity, justice and so much more.”
“Chita Rivera’s ground-breaking career is deeply inspirational and important to people of Hispanic descent everywhere, but particularly in our community of East Harlem where families, especially children, face profound obstacles to success,” stated Reada Edelstein, CEO of LSA Family Health Service. “Her accomplishments stand as an example of what can be achieved when innate talent is nurtured in a supportive environment and brought to fruition through hard work and commitment.”
The evening will include a musical tribute to Chita Rivera, performed by Doreen Montalvo. Doreen Montalvo is a theatre/ television/ film performer and recording artist, currently playing Gloria Estefan’s mother “Gloria Fajardo” in the hit Broadway musical “On Your Feet” at the Marquis Theatre. She recently released a solo album “American Soul/ Latin Heart,” a song from which was pre-selected for 2017 Latin Grammy consideration. She was an original cast member of the Tony Award winning “In The Heights,” and is a recipient of a 2007 Drama Desk award for best ensemble.
The Corporate Spirit Award will be presented to The Deerfield Foundation for its commitment to healthcare initiatives that benefit children from underserved communities and all people that have disease or need healthcare services. It has been a long-time supporter of LSA’s environmental health and nursing programs, which seek to reduce the disproportionally high rates of asthma and infant mortality in East Harlem.
Ralph Siciliano, Esq. will be presented the Community Spirit Award. Mr. Siciliano served for many years as the chairman of the board of directors of LSA Family Health Service and remains an active board member, helping to lead the agency through a period of transition and growth. Mr. Siciliano is a partner at Tannenbaum, Helpern, Syracuse & Hirschtritt LLP.
John Capetta and Virginia Chambers, LSA board members and co-chairs of the event, commended the contributions of the honorees. “In addition to her accomplishments as an entertainer and role model, Chita Rivera has given her time and support to AIDS-related organizations and campaigns for public health throughout her career,” said Mr. Capetta. “The Deerfield Foundation has been a steadfast partner with LSA in improving health outcomes in the East Harlem community, and Ralph Siciliano is a tireless advocate for children and families.” Ms. Chambers added: “LSA Family Health Service is honored to recognize the impressive contributions that the Spirit of East Harlem honorees have made to New York.”
The Spirit of East Harlem is endorsed by a number of elected and appointed officials, including Diego Gomez Pickering, Consul General of Mexico in New York, and United States Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand.
The gala will take place on the evening of Monday, October 16, 2017, at Guastavino’s in Manhattan. More than 400 guests are expected to attend the event, which raises essential funding for LSA Family Health Service’s health, education, and family support programs.
Event information and detailed honoree bios can be found at the event website: SpiritofEastHarlem.com.
CONTACT: Asari Beale, Director of Communications 646-672-5200.
LSA Family Health Service, founded by the Little Sisters of the Assumption, strengthens and empowers vulnerable families and children by meeting their basic needs for food, healthcare, education and a safe home, in the belief that affirming families in their own dignity improves the entire community. It reaches some of the most marginalized families in New York City and helps them overcome the barriers that poverty and isolation pose to family health and wellbeing.