Jean And Martin Shafiroff

Kevin Hughes With Jean Shafiroff And Charles-Edouard Catherine

Jean Shafiroff And Flo Anthony

The Surgeons of Hope Foundation (SoH), dedicated to providing every infant and child with a damaged heart an equal opportunity to receive life-saving surgery, held its Annual Hope Charity Gala at Brasserie Ruhlmann in Rockefeller Plaza on Sunday, May 4. Honoring philanthropist Jean Shafiroff and Kevin Hughes, clinical cardiovascular specialist for Edwards Lifesciences, the event afforded the 130 guests in attendance an exclusive opportunity to sample a delightful six-course spring menu created specifically for the occasion by Master Chef Laurent Tourondel. The Hope Charity Gala raised nearly $200,000 in donations that will support the construction of a new cardiac center in Managua, Nicaragua as well as increased surgical missions to treat children in developing countries around the world.

Highlights of the evening included a champagne toast and welcome led by pediatric cardiologist and SoH Board President Eduardo da Cruz, MD.; a brief film demonstrating the progress on the new Cardiac Center with patient updates from surgeon Michelle La Mothe, MD.; a special presentation to evening honorees Jean Shafiroff and Kevin Hughes by SOH Vice President Michel Longchampt. The evening concluded with words by SoH Executive Director Charles-Edouard Catherine and a Live and Dutch auction overseen by Antoine Treuille.

The Art Deco setting of Brasserie Ruhlmann’s main dining room and elegant terrace were accented by beautiful floral designs donated by Alix Astir, founder of New York’s Trellis Fine Florals. Guests were welcomed with Champagne Paul Goerg Premier Cru and chocolates by La Maison du Chocolat. This was followed by a six-course dinner, with each course paired with choice wines to create the ultimate gastronomic experience. The spirited live auction featured an array of experiences that celebrate the joie de vivre, including luxury stays at a chateau in Burgundy and a week in Bordeaux with airfare provided by Air France. Silent auction items ranged from three cookbooks signed by Laurent Tourondel to a round of golf and four-person cart at Trump National Golf Club Bedminster.

Grand Sponsors of the evening included: Mr. and Mrs. Michel Berty; Mr. and Mrs. Michel Longchampt; Jean Shafiroff and Martin Shafiroff, and, Publicis Group. Individual Benefactors included: Mr. and Mrs. Jeanne-Pierre Altier; Mr. and Mrs. Bruno Bich; Mr. Yann Coatanlem; Mr. Jean Denyor; Mr. and Mrs. Donald T. Fox; Dr. Karin Hehenberger; James Jaggers, MD.; Michelle La Mothe, MD., and Jean Karoubi; Mr. and Mrs. Gerard Klingman; Mr. Douglas Krehbiel; Mr. and Mrs. Charles-Henri Mangin; Ms. Catherine Van Milders; Mr. Robert Pine; David Sadroff; George Sape; and, Mr. Maged Shenouda. The evening’s Donors included: Mr. Rene-Pierre Azria; The Raymond Debbane Family Foundation; Ms. Beatrice DuPont; Y.A. Istel Foundation; Mr. and Mrs. Francois Maisonrouge; The Poses Family Foundation; Mr. Patrick de St. Aignan; Mr. and Mrs. David Walentas; and, Mr. Jed Walentas.

Among the other influencers in attendance showing their support of Surgeons of Hope were: Florence Anthony; Alix Astir; Unik Ernest; Dawne-Marie Grannum; Penny Grant, MD.; Walter Greene; Shannon Hales; Anne-Sophie Jaume; Odile Longchampt; Richard Ortoli; model-activist Nykhor Paul; Martin Shafiroff; Helen Shelton; and, Laurent Tourondel.

About Surgeons of Hope

The Surgeons of Hope Foundation (SoH) is a New York City- based nonprofit established in 2002. The organization aims to provide every infant and child with a damaged heart an equal opportunity to receive life-saving surgery. In 2008, Surgeons of Hope decided to focus on the Central American region. SoH established a program in Nicaragua, the second poorest country in the Western Hemisphere. Since then, SoH has constructed an advanced cardiac center, provided training to local medical teams and treated over 500 children in Nicaragua.

It is an unconscionable loss that a child dies anywhere in the world from a heart defect (congenital or acquired) due to lack of resources for proper care, when a child living in the most remote area of the U.S. or Europe with the same heart defect would be easily cured.  Surgeons of Hope seeks to narrow that disparity by living up to its motto: “It’s Not What We Bring.  It’s What We Leave Behind”. 

Surgeons of Hope approaches the need on three key fronts by giving urgently needed care, cultivating skills in local medical teams, and constructing centers of care in developing countries. The long-term goal is to expand into other developing countries to provide critical care for children with heart issues, as well as create sustainable medical infrastructures in each country visited in order to ensure the well-being of future generations.