The Houston transplant community and its supporters were transported to a night at the supper club during the 2018 Nora’s Home “Best is Yet to Come” Gala on Saturday, April 7, 2018 at the Post Oak Hotel. The annual gala honored Linda and the late Jerry Strickland for their selfless commitment to the home’s mission and to spread awareness about organ donation and the needs of transplant patients. Emcee Lisa Malosky welcomed more than 550 guests that helped to raise over $750,000 for Nora’s Home facility and programs that provide care, education, and support for transplant patients and their families.
The evening began with a cocktail reception where guests placed their bets in the casino room or raced to the dancefloor for live music by the David Caceres Band. Guests were also given the chance to partake in the raffle for a chance to win a $10,000 AMEX gift card. Lucky winner Linda Strickland claimed the gift card.
Guests were welcomed to the ballroom to begin dinner. Emcee Malosky took the stage to offer guests a warm welcome and to introduce Nora’s Home with a video highlighting the story of Nora Gaber and her parents’ love for their daughter. Drs. Lillian and Osama Gaber were applauded by the audience for the conception of Nora’s Home. Board Member Jerry “Babu” Patel was recognized with the Nora’s Home 2018 Ambassador of the Year award for his efforts in securing donations of material, furniture and fixtures for the phase two expansion.
Emcee Malosky then proudly welcomed Gala Chairs Paige and Todd Johnson, Ashley and Curt Langley, and Ann and John Smither to the stage. The couples recognized and thanked the Nora’s Home staff and Drs. Lillian and Osama Gaber for welcoming them to the Nora’s Home family. The couples spoke of their involvement with Nora’s Home and excitement for Nora’s Home to open its door of phase two in the summer of 2018. The expansion will more than double in size with the addition of 16 rooms, communal kitchen, and multiple family areas and meeting rooms.
Honorees, Linda and the late Jerry Strickland, were highlighted and thanked for their continuous support. Linda Strickland took the stage to speak of her experience with Jerry’s organ failure and her vision and role as a Nora’s Home Board Member.
After dinner, guests were given the best of classics with a performance by the Rat Pack before emcee Malosky introduced the transplant experience of one of Nora’s Home transplant patients, eight year-old Ximena, and an update on her recovery post-transplant with the help of Nora’s Home.
Guests then had the opportunity to take part in a contest of Heads or Tails where auctioneer Stephen Lewis asked everyone to “place their bets” by either holding their bracelet(s) over their heads or behind their “tails.” The auctioneer then flipped a coin and those who were right remained standing and the process continued until the last one remaining won a 1.24 CTS 14K White Gold Inside/Outside Round Brilliant Diamond Hoop Earrings.
The evening concluded with guests dancing to live music on the dance floor after the live auction, which included club-level tickets to an Astros game of choice during the 2018 regular season along with a signed Altuve jersey, a dove hunt trip in Argentina for four, a getaway to New York City to see Margaritaville on Broadway, and a new puppy. The focus of the night drew attention to the needs of transplant patients and the proceeds benefitted the Adopt-A-Family fund, which provides financial support for families who cannot afford to pay the minimal nightly fee. The evening concluded with a final performance by the David Caceres band and an invitation to continue the fun at the mission market and casino.
Saturday’s Gala was supported by many individuals, community partners and generous underwriters, including Paige and Todd Johnson, Ashley and Curt Langley, John and Ann Smither, Linda Strickland, Catherine and Walter Christopherson, Allison and Jack Jensen, Mary Lee and Jim Wallace, Colleen and John Kotts, Drs. Lillian and Osama Gaber, The Honorable Khaled Rady and Dr. Manal Affara, Maria and John Zerr, Caroline and Eddie Kuntz, Laura and Mark Hobeika, Casey and Will Hedges, Gayle and Tom Kennedy, Linda and Steve Webster, Jennifer and Travis Fitts, Dr. Stephanie Yi and Terence Padden, Eric Boerwinkle, Elizabeth and Alex Dwyer, Geer and Libba Blalock, Matt and Jennifer Girotto, Dan and Virginia Steppe
If you would like to learn about Nora’s Home, visit www.norashome.org or call 832-831-3720.