The Smile Gala LA 2015
OPERATION SMILE HONORS SELMA BLAIR, HENRY NGUYEN AND THE RODOSKY FAMILY AT 2015 SMILE GALA IN LOS ANGELES
The Smile Gala Raised More Than $1.1 Million to Benefit Operation Smile
Special Performances by Natasha Bedingfield and Eric Hutchinson
Los Angeles, CA – Operation Smile, the international children’s medical charity, honored actress Selma Blair; Henry Nguyen, Managing General Partner, IDG Ventures Vietnam and Managing Partner of Los Angeles Football Club and long time Operation Smile supporters the Rodosky family at its 2015 Smile Gala, Friday, October 2, at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel, Beverly Hills. The evening featured special performances by singer/songwriters Natasha Bedingfield, Eric Hutchinson and dancer Jim Nowakowski (So You Think You Can Dance). DJ Mix Master Mike of the Beastie Boys entertained guests at the after party. Kevin Beggs, Roma Downey and Mark Burnett, Jennifer and Henry Salke, co-chaired. The 2015 Smile Gala raised more than $1.1 million to benefit Operation Smile.
Following a pre-dinner cocktail reception, guests were ushered into the ballroom to the lively harmony of Musyca Children’s Choir. Operation Smile Ambassador, actress, author and TV personality and for the third year, the evening’s host, Brooke Burke-Charvet welcomed guests, providing a moving overview of the mission of Operation Smile, noting that the organization “has transformed lives across the globe via an operation that can happen in as few as 45 minutes and cost as little as $240. Their track record is unmatched.”
“Our organization is so fortunate to have such extraordinary and dedicated supporters who are making a difference in children’s lives,” said Operation Smile Co-Founder and CEO, Dr. Bill Magee. “We are honored to celebrate these remarkable individuals for their generosity and support to enable our programs to provide exceptional surgical care for children around the world so that no child suffers from lack of access to safe surgery.”
Operation Smile provides free surgery for children worldwide suffering from facial deformities, to heal their smiles and transform their lives. Every three minutes, a child is born with a cleft lip or cleft palate. The Smile Gala is a premier event, helping Operation Smile provide hope and healthy futures for children worldwide.
Award-winning actress Selma Blair was presented the Universal Smile Award by photographer Brian Bowen Smith. Best known for her performances in pop culture classic films such as Cruel Intentions and Legally Blonde, Blair has built an acclaimed and diverse career in Hollywood. She will portray Kris Jenner in FX’s highly anticipated series American Crime Story: The People vs. OJ Simpson. The actress turned fashionista has also worked with a roster of high-end designers and has appeared in numerous campaigns including Chanel, Miu-Miu and Marc Jacobs. Although she has had impressive acting and fashion careers, Blair credits motherhood as her most rewarding accomplishment. She has dedicated many of her efforts towards charities that benefit the betterment of children and their hopeful futures including Children Mending Hearts, Cure Batten, Stomp Out Bullying, Safe Kids USA, Fistula Foundation, No Kid Hungry, Fairy Gay Mother and STARS, among others.
Henry Nguyen, Managing General Partner, IDG Ventures Vietnam, a private equity firm focused on consumer, technology, media and telecom investments in Vietnam, received Operation Smile’s John Connor Humanitarian Award. Nguyen is also the Developmental Licensee for all McDonald’s restaurants in Vietnam as well as the Chairman and Publisher of Forbes in Vietnam. With a deep passion for sports, he established the Saigon Heat pro basketball team and is also the Managing Partner of the Los Angeles Football Club (LAFC), the newest club in Major League Soccer. Nguyen is Chairman of the Board of Advisors for Operation Smile Vietnam and is a member of the Advisory Board of ASEAN Business Club, the regional business platform to support Southeast Asian economic integration. He currently serves on the Board of VC Corporation, Vega Technology Group, BHD Media and Goldsun FocusMedia. Operation Smile’s John Connor Humanitarian Award honors those who have demonstrated concern and love for their fellow man through their actions and deeds.
The Rodosky family was presented the 2015 Founders Circle Award, which honors unique supporters who have made outstanding contributions as a family or group of committed individuals by their friend and long-time Operation Smile supporter Daneia Sanadiki and Operation Smile Co-Founders Dr. Bill and Kathy Magee. Steve Rodosky is Managing Director, Pacific Investment Management Company, and Kim is owner and co-founder of 503found, a California design showroom selling home furniture, décor, lighting, art and accessories located in Newport Beach. As parents of six children, the Rodoskys have helped underwrite several of Operation Smile’s Park City Celebrity Ski & Smile Challenge events held in Park City, Utah. Kim and their two oldest boys, Charlie and Jack, went to China on an Operation Smile medical mission. While the experience is always life changing, their trip had special significance since they were able to visit the country where their sister Annie was born. In August, Steve and their youngest son Matthew went on an Operation Smile medical mission to Mexico.
A glittering addition to the festivities…a raffle of exquisite diamond jewelry pieces from the Le Dragon d’Or collection. The Universal Smile Award, Founders Circle Award and the John Connor Humanitarian Award were all donated by Lladró, the world renowned creator of the finest in porcelain art. Operation Smile’s 2015 Smile Gala was produced for the 11th consecutive year by Scott Mauro Entertainment, Inc. For more information, please visit www.operationsmile.org/lagala.
For updates on Operation Smile’s global efforts, visit the daily blogs on www.operationsmile.org, follow on Twitter at www.twitter.com/operationsmile, and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/operationsmile.
About Operation Smile
Operation Smile is an international medical charity, which provides free surgeries to children in developing countries who are born with cleft lip, cleft palate or other facial deformities. It is one of the oldest and largest volunteer-based organizations dedicated to improving the health and lives of children worldwide through access to surgical care. Since it was founded in 1982, Operation Smile has developed expertise in mobilizing volunteer medical teams to conduct surgical missions in resource-poor environments while adhering to the highest standards of care and safety. Operation Smile helps to fill the gap in providing access to safe, well-timed surgeries by partnering with hospitals, governments and ministries of health, training local medical personnel, and donating much-needed supplies and equipment to surgical sites around the world. Founded and based in Virginia, Operation Smile has a presence in more than 60 countries and a global network of credentialed surgeons, pediatricians, doctors, nurses, and student volunteers.
2015 Smile Gala Photo Gallery
2015 Smile Gala Highlights