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Red Cross Announces Annual Red Cross Gala on March 11, 2017

SAN FRANCISCO, CA (March 1, 2017) – The American Red Cross of the Bay Area will host its annual Red Cross Gala, “Heroes Among Us,” honoring military service members, veterans and families who have selflessly served and those who are currently serving our nation as well as those who tirelessly support them while raising funds to support the Red Cross mission to prevent and alleviate human suffering during emergencies. Chaired by Kate Smith and Ezra Garrett, this year’s red-tie affair will be held on Saturday, March 11, 2017, from 6:00 p.m. to midnight at the historic Julia Morgan Ballroom at the Merchants Exchange Club in beautiful downtown San Francisco.

The American Red Cross of the Bay Area will recognize and celebrate four honorees – Dr. Russell Lemle, Founder of Pets for Vets; Jake Harriman, CEO of Nuru International; Major General James M. “Mike” Myatt, President and CEO of Marines Memorial Association; and Mary Louise Chapman, Red Cross Volunteer – for their outstanding dedication, service and contributions on behalf of service members, veterans and military families.

“For our military, service does not end with retirement,” said Ezra Garret, gala co-chair and American Red Cross of the Bay Area board member. “Those who faithfully served for twenty or more years demonstrate a dedication unrivaled by any other profession, and they continue to serve as members of our communities even after the uniform has been retired.”

“As a committee, we have worked tirelessly and passionately to bring together a meaningful mission-driven theme, Heroes Among Us,” added Kate Smith, gala co-chair. “This year’s Red Cross Gala is for all who have served in our armed forces. Their service is voluntary and often requires decades of extreme personal sacrifices. They work on the front lines and behind the scenes each and every day in honor and duty to our nation, so it is with great pleasure that we celebrate an evening of recognition and gratitude.”

The event will feature a cocktail reception, live auction, hosted wine and spirits bar, three-course dinner, dancing, inspiring program, and an after-party, featuring live music by local favorite Notorious. EMMY award-winning broadcast personality and KCBS “Foodie Chap,” Liam Mayclem, will emcee the night and auction off once-in-a-lifetime experiences from dining with cast members from Broadway’s hit production, Hamilton to being spoiled by some of Napa Valley’s finest food and wine experts. Proceeds from the Red Cross Gala support the American Red Cross of the Bay Area’s disaster preparedness, response and recovery programs, and services to armed forces.

Corporate Sponsors include PG&E Corporation, Wells Fargo, 49er’s Foundation, The Clorox Company, Deloitte, Franklin Templeton Investments, Dignity Health, Kaiser Permanente, Oportun, Raiders, SalesForce, and Union Square Advisors. Patron Sponsors include: Anonymous, Kelly and Ted Murphy, Nielma and Kirby Hock, Lillian Phan, V'Anne Singleton and Robert Elfont, Renee and Sebastian Bea, Bill and Janie Fountain, Ezra Garrett, Michael Gallagher, Elizabeth Sevilla and Ron Lavelle on behalf of Seiler, LLP and Theo Schwabacher. Entertainment is being underwritten by Jay Siegan Presents.

The 2017 Red Cross Gala committee includes co-chairs Kate Smith and Ezra Garrett; vice-chairs Nielma Hock, Alexandra Pastor, Lillian Phan, Kirsten Strobel, Eva Voisin and Julie Yarbrough; and committee members Renee Bea, Cassandra Boyer, Judy Davies, Janie Fountain, Sally Fowler, Ann Cheney Haslup, Michael Hoy, Breanna Johnson, Jennifer Lujan, Uli Martinez, Lauren McLaughlin, Kelly and Ted Murphy, Theo Schwabacher, and V’Anne Singleton.

Individual gala tickets are available for $495; after party only tickets for $95/person. Sponsorships are still available at

In fiscal year, 2016, the American Red Cross around the world:

  • Provided nearly 385,000 emergency communication services to 125,000 military members and their families.
  • Trained more than 9,200 family members in improving coping skills and resiliency.
  • Trained nearly 400 dental and medical assistants on military installations.
  • Distributed nearly 659,000 care, comfort and therapy items at military hospitals and medical facilities.
  • Served 160,000 individuals through rehabilitation and morale programs.
  • Reached 705,000 individuals through “Get to Know US Before You Need Us” briefings.
  • In Red Cross offices and military and VA medical facilities around the world, more than 12,600 volunteers dedicate their time and talents.
  • Volunteers gave 1.3 million hours, worth more than $31 million in service to the members of the military and veteran community.
  • Follow us on Twitter at #redcrossgalasf for more Red Cross Gala information and updates.

    About the American Red Cross of the Bay Area

    The American Red Cross shelters, feeds, and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please call 1-888-4-HELP-BAY (1-888-443-5722) or visit to learn more. You may also find us on Facebook and Twitter.