Thanks to Ted Dealey’s Grandson Rusty Dealey’s Surprise Announcement At The Fur Ball, The Family Support Of The SPCA Of Texas Continued

With loads of animals hitting the SPCA of Texas facilities thanks to hurricanes and abusive situations, a black-tie crowd of more than 800 guests rallied in the Omni Dallas’ Dallas Ballroom on Saturday, September 30.

But before that happened, the crowd at the “Reigning Cats and Dogs” was shoulder-to-shoulder with tiaras topping coiffured heads in the lobby. As Barbara and Jim Moroney headed to the registration table, other members of The Dallas Morning News family like longtime DMN photographer David Woo were already partying. Only seemed appropriate, as the DMN was to receive 2017 Spencer Humanitarian Award.

Russell “Rusty” Dealey and Debra Burns*

But there was still more news to come during the meal. SPCA Development Director Debra Burns recalled how before moving to the state-of-the-art Jan Rees-Jones Animal Care Center on I-30, the SPCA had occupied much smaller facilities just off of then-Irving Blvd., now known as Riverfront Blvd. It was named the G.B. “Ted” Dealey Animal Care Center. Debra told how on her first day with the SPCA, she had discovered a photo of Joe Dealey and George Jalonick at the opening of the facilities back in the 1970s. That set her sights on continuing the family’s involvement in the 21st century SPCA. Sure, the late Betty Moroney Norsworthy’s estate had contributed a $1M gift to kick off the fundraising in 2003 for the future Rees-Jones facility. But that was more than a decade ago, and the SPCA’s programs and services had grown dramatically. She got together with Ted’s grandson Russell “Rusty” Dealey and the two of them pulled off a major surprise that was only revealed at the gala — Rusty’s gifting $1M for the 41,000 square-foot rescue center that opened in 2015. According to Debra, not even the family nor Rusty’s accountant knew about his generous gift.

Amy Bailey and little fella

Lynn McBee, Joe B Clark and Paige McDaniel

But before the announcement of the gift was made at the dinner, the cocktail reception continued with Amy Bailey cuddling up with a “boy toy” looking for a permanent hug… Lynn McBee may have been solo because husband Allan McBee was out of town, but she soon ran into Paige McDaniel and Joe B ClarkKaty and Lawrence Bock reported that they were still getting rave reviews from the Cattle Baron’s Ball Live Auction preview at their home base in Preston Center. Katy, who will be co-chairing the 2018 CBB, said things were moving along, but she sorta hated the thought of just one more year with the organization. Seems CBB bylaws require old CBB chairs to retire from hands-on involvement. Lawrence comforted Katy by saying there would probably be other organizations in her future…. Checking out the acres of silent auction items were Mary Frances Burleson and Lori Ferguson ….Alas, longtime animal-loving Diane Brierley was a no-show. But, she had a valid excuse. Earlier in the day she had hurt her paw foot and was homebound. 

Lawrence and Katy Bock

Mary Frances Burleson, James Bias and Lori Ferguson

Once the ballroom doors opened, the fundraising ramped up. Here’s a report from the field:

Each beautifully appointed table was graced with gorgeous floral centerpieces complete with golden crowns thanks to Dr Delphinium. The delightful dinner included a salad of butter lettuce and seasonal greens salad with spiced pecans, goat cheese, and pancetta served with a Sherry Vinaigrette along with entrees, either Beef ‘Wellington’ petite filet and slow roasted salmon with mushroom duxelle, puff pastry, Pomme Dauphinois, green bean bundle, baby carrot, roasted radish and acorn squash bordelaise or Herb Creamed Spinach Stuffed portabella mushroom with steamed rice, green bean bundle, roasted vegetables baby carrot, acorn squash and radish in red pepper sauce. The delicious dessert was a Black Forest cheese cake with chocolate and vanilla sauce with a gold-flecked cherry garnish.

Subbing in for WFAA’s Ron Corning, who had to bail out due to a previous commitment was “Good Morning Texas’” Alanna Sarabia wearing her glittering Fiesta Queen crown. As past reigning Miss San Antonio and Fiesta Queen, her platform was the importance of responsible pet ownership as well as spaying and neutering pets to curb overpopulation for the health and safety of the community. Ms. Sarabia spoke about the importance of pets in all our lives, remembering that pets were furry siblings as she grew up and an important part of her life ever since. She thanked guests for their support and partnership to help the SPCA of Texas rescue, heal, and find homes for abandoned and abused animals.

SPCA of Texas President and CEO James Bias, welcomed guests, staff and volunteers, thanked sponsors and shared with guests the important work the SPCA of Texas is able to perform thanks to the community’s support, such as saving animals on a cruelty case like the 100 dogs seized from a puppy mill the previous Monday, providing spay or neuter services to tens of thousands of pets in Southern Dallas and all of North Texas, and, most recently, saying yes to caring for over 600 animals in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. James also thanked the SPCA of Texas’ board of directors for their guidance and spoke about how the SPCA of Texas’ staff, volunteers and partners are intently focused at all times on saving lives, making a difference and never resting until the organization makes our community a better place for people and their pets. 

Jocelyn White and Katy Murray

James and SPCA of Texas Board Chair and Chief Financial Officer for A. H. Belo Corporation Katy Murray presented the 2017 Spencer Humanitarian Award to The Dallas Morning News for their comprehensive, ongoing coverage of the loose dog problem and subsequent suffering of animals and people in Southern Dallas. Publisher of The Dallas Morning News Publisher/A.H. Belo CEO Jim Moroney accepted the award, and was joined by several members of the editorial staff. The Spencer Humanitarian Award, named for warm-hearted entrepreneur and long-tenured, past SPCA of Texas Board member Mary Spencer, recognizes an individual, company or group whose extraordinary efforts have made a positive difference for animals. The Dallas Morning News has and continues to shine a light on the heartbreaking issue of suffering on the part of people and pets taking place in the most underserved area in Dallas. Their coverage in no small part contributed to the subsequent funding of the largest-scale spay/neuter, vaccination and microchipping effort in the nation to date by many of the most prominent charities in North Texas. Their voice, calling attention to animal issues, is loud, clear and unwavering, and the pets and people of North Texas are fortunate indeed for this.

SPCA Senior VP for Development Debra Burns wrapped up by thanking guests, and announcing a surprise $1 million gift from Russell E. Dealey. The SPCA of Texas is grateful for Mr. Dealey’s tremendous gift, and has re-named its Animal Rescue Center in Dallas the “Russell E. Dealey Animal Rescue Center.”

Guests then bid often and bid high on the evening’s nine fabulously over-the-top live auction items and “Pony Up for Paws” raise the paddle feature. High-rolling patrons won delicious dining experiences, glamorous getaways to Telluride and New York City, a decadent “Girls Just Want to Have Fun” spa and shopping package and more. The top three live auction items of the evening were all once-in-a-lifetime experiences. One of these was a two day, two night package for four to the world-renowned animal sanctuary, the Cleveland Amory Black Beauty Ranch in Murchison, Texas, complete with personalized tours and more. Others were a getaway to Mountain Lodge in Telluride, Colorado and a fabulous Thanksgiving Day in New York, New York.  

Fur Ball 2016 then brought the high-voltage fun with headline entertainment by Dallas’ ultimate party band, Limelight. Guests rushed the dance floor and partied until after Midnight. 

Fur Ball 2016 was a tail-wagging success thanks to Event Chair Cindy Lindsley; Event Co-Chairs Laura Floyd, Allie Jarvie and Jennifer Lindsley; Auction Chair Sandra Fite and Auction Co-Chair Cameron Gummer.

The SPCA of Texas sincerely thanks special partners, including 

  • Diamond sponsor: Russell E. Dealey;
  • Sapphire sponsors: Barefoot Wine and Bubbly, Lydia and Bill Addy, Colin and Sandra Fite, Marsha Pendleton-Gray and Richard Gray, H/3 Foundation, Northern Trust, Trevor and Jan Rees-Jones and Sewell Automotive;
  • Ruby sponsors: Dr Delphinium and Rebecca Farris;
  • Emerald sponsors: Carla J. Brandt, Linda and Ozzie Chapa, Jill Bee and Loren Glasser, Guaranty Bank and Trust, Holly and Philip Huffines, Nancy and Ty Merelli, Milagro Tequila, Thompson and Knight Foundation, Come from Away – A New Musical and Webb Family Foundation;
  • Corporate Royal Gem sponsors: AG&E Structural Engenuity, Alliance Insurance, Cityvet, Hill’s Pet Nutrition, Hollywood Feed, Merck Animal Health, Heineken, OrangeTheory Fitness, Origin Bank, PBK, RKD Group, Swiss Avenue Women’s Guild, Tejas Ranch & Game Fence, VCA Animal Hospitals, Vinson and Elkins LLP and Whole Foods Market;
  • Media Sponsors: Modern Luxury Magazine and Slingshot.

Guests included the Rees-Jones clan (Jan and Trevor, Jenny and Trevor, Margaret and David), Sally Anne Hudnall, Stacey and Don KivowitzGwen and Leldon Echols, Gigi Potter Salley, Phillip and Holly Huffines, Beth and Steve Jarvie, Lynn and Peter Dauterman, Meredith Perot, Peter Addie, Kirsten Burns, Jill Bee and Dr. Loren Glasser, Linda and Ozzie Chapa, Betsy Orton and Sharon FancherJudy Davis, Gus HinojosaTeresa and Chic Henderson, Steve Atkinson and Ted Kincaid, Kelly Thompson, Dr. Rocky McKelvey, Carolyn and David KubesPam Ragon, Danny Tobey and Bill Driscoll.

* Photo credit: Brett Redman

It Was Reigning Cat And Dogs Along Turtle Creek For SPCA Of Texas’ Fur Ball Patrons With Meow Margaritas And Chocolate Mousse Shots

Just 10 days before the SPCA of TexasFur Ball 2017 at the Omni Dallas Hotel, the Reigning Cats and Dogs patrons were hosted by Wealth Strategist from Northern Trust at Amy and Malone Mitchell‘s estate. The weather was just perfect for guests to enjoy the view of Turtle Creek from the outdoor terrace. While there were no SPCA residents in attendance, the Meow Margaritas, the chocolate mousse shots and chicken lollipops filled the critter bill. Here’s a report from the field: 

Mitchell terrace

In the golden glow of the late summer sunset on Wednesday, September 20, in the heart of Highland Park, patrons and friends gathered at the home of Amy and Malone Mitchell to celebrate the SPCA of Texas’ Fur Ball 2017, Reigning Cats and Dogs. Guests sipped champagne, wine and the signature drink for the evening, the Meow Margaritas featuring Milagro Tequila, as they chatted with excited anticipation about the upcoming gala.  

Guests were serenaded by pianist Kevin Sutton as they toured the Mitchell’s stunning mansion and lush grounds.

Don Lindsley, Claire Schwartz and Alex Winslow*

An overabundant table of savories were enjoyed, including chicken quesadillas; chili con queso and roasted pepper salsa; towers of cheese, crackers and charcuterie plates; mountains of summer vegetables with red pepper and spinach hummus; herbed chicken lollipops and prime rib bites. Delightful desserts included decadent chocolate mousse shots and chocolate-covered roasted marshmallows. The evening’s sublime food was provided by Wendy Krispin Catering.  

Cindy Lindsley, James Bias, Sandra Fite and Alanna Sarabia*

As the evening wound down, words of appreciation filled the air. Alex Winslow, Wealth Strategist from Northern Trust, Patron Party Sponsor, thanked friends, patrons and SPCA of Texas staff for their partnership, and celebrated helping to find all of the animals a “Fur Ball forever home.” SPCA of Texas President and CEO James Bias thanked Northern Trust for their partnership, thanked Chair Cindy Lindsley, Auction Chair Sandra Fite, the Fur Ball Host Committee and Auction Committee for their amazing work to make this year’s event a stunning success. He also thanked all Fur Ball patrons for helping the organization “to say yes to helping animals, whether we’re saving an animal on a cruelty case, providing spay or neuter services to pets in Southern Dallas and most recently, saying yes to caring for over 600 animals in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.”

Debra Burns, Greg Cannon, Kristy Parker and Russell Dealey*

Board Member Stacey Kivowitz praised the public for the fantastic response to the need of animals and their people in the wake of Hurricane Harvey. Sr. Vice President for Development Debra Burns thanked the SPCA of Texas’ staff, Board of Directors and all Fur Ball committees and sponsors and invited everyone to, “Get your dance cards ready and your dancing shoes on!”

Arnold and Mary Spencer*

Lynn McBee, Jodi Benefiel and Diane Brierley*

Steve Atkinson, Karen Urie and Ted Kincaid*

David and Carolyn Kubes*

Guests included Jan and Trevor Rees-JonesRussell Dealey, Lynn McBee, Diane and Hal Brierley, Katy Murray, Alanna Sarabia, Stacey and Don Kivowitz, Gloria Snead, Steve and Marty Scruggs, Krista Tankersley, Marsha Pendleton-Gray and Dr. Richard Gray, Steve Atkinson and Ted Kincaid, David and Carolyn Kubes, Karen Urie, Betsy Orton and Sharon Fancher, Kristen Greenberg, Linda Chapa, Ann and Sanjay Agrawal and Deb Goldstein.

*Photo credit: Thomas Garza Photography

SPCA of Texas Is Purring With Delight Over A Howling $1M Gift From Rusty Dealey For The Animal Rescue Center

At Saturday night’s SPCA of Texas black-tie “Fur Ball” in the Omni Dallas Hotel’s Dallas Ballroom, there was good reason for tiaras to be the accessory du jour. Sure, the theme was “Reigning Cats and Dogs,” but a surprise announcement added a special sparkle to the night.

2017 SPCA Of Texas Fur Ball “Reigning Cats And Dogs”*

It was the revealing of a million-dollar gift from Russell “Rusty” Dealey to support the 41,000-square-foot rescue center that opened in 2015. In addition to serving as headquarters for the SPCA’s Animal Cruelty Investigations Unit, the facility is able to house up to 500 animals in cases where large or small seizures of animals are required and provides for full medical facilities for triage and behavior training on site.

Debra Burns and Russell Dealey*

In honor of the donation, the center will be named the Russell E. Dealey Animal Rescue Center. 

When the announcement was made, the surprise was real even for those close to Rusty. Even his cousin Dallas Morning News CEO Jim Moroney III and Rusty’s accountant didn’t know of the gift.

Jim probably thought the news of the night involving the family was the paper’s receiving the 2017 Mary Spencer Humanitarian Award for its “comprehensive, ongoing coverage of the loose dog problem and subsequent suffering of animals and people in Southern Dallas.” According to insiders, he didn’t know what his cousin was up to.

According to SPCA of Texas Senior VP of Development Debra Burns, “We are so delighted to have the Dealey name continue their legacy of giving to the SPCA of Texas. Russell is a caring and generous man to animals.”

The Dealey legacy with the SPCA started back when the organization’s facilities were located on Riverfront Blvd. (formerly known as Industrial Blvd.) for 40 years and was known at the E.M. “Ted” Dealey Animal Care Center. It was named after The Dallas Morning News patriarch G.B. Dealey’s son Ted, who was publisher of The Dallas Morning News and an animal lover. The capital campaign for the center was spearheaded by Ted’s son/G.B.’s grandson, Joe Dealey Sr. and George Jalonick.

When the SPCA learned that the Dealey facility was going to be demolished due to highway construction, a campaign for the current Jan Rees-Jones Animal Care Center got underway. To help things along, a gift of $1M was provided by the estate of Betty Moroney Norsworthy, who was G.B. Dealey’s granddaughter, Ted’s niece, Joe Sr.’s cousin and Jim’s aunt.

To continue the tradition, Rusty is the great grandson of G.B, the grandson of Ted and the son of Joe Sr.

Confused? Don’t worry. Just be happy that the SPCA of Texas has $1M for a much needed facility, thanks to Rusty.

* Photo courtesy of SPCA of Texas

2017 Fur Ball Team Reports At Kick-Off Party That The SPCA Of Texas Fundraiser Will Be “Reigning Cats And Dogs” Come September

The two-legged critters got together at Highland Park Village’s Alice And Olivia to dine, shop and learn about plans for the black-tie 2017 Fur Ball. Needless to say, guests were purring with approval when details of the SPCA of Texas fundraiser were revealed. Here’s a report from the field:

Fur Ball Kick-Off party*

Friends of Fur Ball gathered on a lovely spring evening at Alice and Olivia at Highland Park Village on Tuesday, May 2, for the Fur Ball 2017 kick-off party! Guests were all decked out in spring finery, and joined 2017 Fur Ball Chair Cindy Lindsley; Auction Chair Sandra Fite; Co-Chairs Laura Floyd, Allie Jarvie and Jennifer Lindsley; and Auction Co-Chair Cameron Gummer to enjoy shopping, champagne and sweet and savory bites.

Cameron Gummer, Cindy Lindsley and Sandra Fite*

Champagne and wine, thanks to Barefoot Wine and Bubbly, were passed while guests enjoyed light bites provided by Whole Foods and Bird Bakery’s signature cupcakes. The evening’s superb staffing was provided thanks to KMG Events. People’s pooches also felt the love thanks to gourmet dog treats from Dane and Dale Pet Provisions.

Sincere thanks Alice and Olivia for welcoming the happy crowd and for donating 15% of proceeds from the evening’s sales to the SPCA of Texas! Very special thanks to Alice and Olivia for hosting the beautiful bash, especially CEO Stacey Bendet and store manager Carson Haynes.

The event was held in support of the SPCA of Texas’ Fur Ball 2017, “Reigning Cats and Dogs,” DFW’s salute to the bond between people and their pets. The elegant black-tie gala will delight the senses with Emcee Ron Corning, dancing, headline entertainment by Limelight and live and silent auctions. SPCA of Texas’ Fur Ball 2017 will be held on Saturday, September 30, from 6:30 p.m. to midnight at the Omni Dallas.

All money raised through Fur Ball 2017 will go towards the SPCA of Texas’ important mission to rescue, heal, and find loving homes for vulnerable animals.

Sharon Fancher, Katy Murray, Lynn McBee, Gus Hinojosa and Betsy*

Karen Urie and Kristen Greenberg*

Debra Burns and Russell Dealey*

Guests included Lynn McBee, Russell Dealey, Betsy Orton, Sharon Fancher, Paula Calise, Giana DePaul, Kay Whelan, Anja Woodson, Andrea Reich, Chad England, Ashley Berges, Mark Soto, Ashley Berges, Diane Taheri, Tatiana MurphyElizabeth and Harold McCoy, Carly O’Keefe, Carla Webb, Cameron and Jay Gummer, Kristen Greenberg, Dean McSherry, SPCA of Texas Chair Katie Murray, Gus Hinojosa, Steve Atkinson, Teresa Henderson, Karen Urie and Susie Swanson.

* Photo credit: Thomas Garza Photography

Suzanne And David Palmlund Opened Their Swiss Avenue Estate For Fur Ball Patrons To Learn About New Live Auction Items

Wednesdays are showing all the signs of becoming the new Thursday. And as anyone who has a Daytimer knows, Thursday has evolved into a true-blue workout for fundraisers. But on Wednesday, September 14, North Texas was in overdrive with fundraiser types scrambling around. The Cattle Baronesses were at Jimmy Choo checking out the most showy high steppers. It was perfectly timed for those who were in a last-minute dilemma for footwear to attend Friday’s Crystal Charity Ball Fashion Show. After all, who wants to show up for this fashion extravaganza in last season’s retreads when shoe-loving/featured designer Carolina Herrera will be on the scene?

And speaking of retailing, The Family Place’s Partners Card South Soiree was just inches away from NorthPark’s Nordstroms. Talk about a shopping pep rally in preparation for the Thursday, October 28 thru Sunday, November 6 event in North Texas!

And while the rest of Dallas got hit by a sudden torrent of rain, Suzanne and David Palmlund opened their Swiss Avenue estate for the SPCA’s Fur Ball patron party with nary a care about the weather. After all, their mansion and cabana were the perfect spot to hide just in case the heavens opened up.

Suzanne and David Palmlund's pool

Suzanne and David Palmlund’s pool

The gentile mansion was once again decked out for the occasion with sponsor backdrop on the front porch, games in the party room and a mammoth rubber ducky and parrot floating in the pool.

Kristen Greenberg and Suzanne Palmlund

Kristen Greenberg and Suzanne Palmlund

As Suzanne opened wide the front doors for the 125 guests like Mary Spencer Humanitarian Award recipient Karen Urie, Susan McSherry (Fur Ball Co-Chair Kristen Greenberg‘s sis-in-law), Dan Pritchett, Andrea Alcorn, Tatyana Murphy, Joan and Larry Rogers, Leslie Spalding, Gary Rugoff, Mary Lonzano, Tricia Sims and SPCA top dog James Bias, a server scurried to wipe up an “oops” spill on the entry hall floor.

Even before the festivities start at 6:30, guests were filling all the nooks and crannies of the 103-year-old mansion.

Phyllis Comu and Sandra Fite

Phyllis Comu and Sandra Fite

While 2016 Fur Ball Chair Phyllis Comu was delayed in traffic, Kristen explained that the event was close to “Sold Out” status (only about 35 tickets shy of 1,000). She was relieved to report that a waiting list was in place when the done-deal status had been achieved for the Saturday, September 24th gala at the Omni Dallas.

News of the night was talk about the live auction items coordinated by Sandra Fite. Two hitting the OMG level were the donations of animal-loving Jan Rees-Jones and her husband Trevor Rees-Jones. They had donated their personal suite at American Airlines Center for the sold-out Adele concert on Wednesday, November 2. What made this item even hotter was the fact that this tour would be Adele’s last one for a rumored ten years. She’s going to stop touring and focus full-time attention on raising her son, Angelo.

The second item that was just added earlier in the day was the ultimate top-tier level Savor package.

Tickets are getting scarce for this one, so get off the leash and get your spot locked down here.

JUST IN: Animal-Loving Karen Urie To Receive SPCA’s Spencer Humanitarian Award At The September Fur Ball

Mary Urie (File photo)

Mary Urie (File photo)

Last night Café Pacific was popping as usual. While the bar brimmed primarily with the guy types, at 5:30 a group of tables in the dining room were pulled together. First to appear tableside was SPCA kingpin James Bias. Then Fur Ball Co-chair Phyllis Comu arrived on the scene followed by animal lovers  like Katy Murray, Fur Ball Co-Chair Kristen Greenberg, Mary Spencer and SPCA Senior VP Debra Burns. One of the last to arrive was Diane Brierley, just back from New York City, where one of husband Hal Brierley‘s former companies had held a reunion over the weekend.

The Café Pacific get together was billed as something to do with the SPCA’s Paw Cause. Or, at least that’s what Dave Perry Miller’ s Karen Urie was led to believe. Ah, but those SPCA folks are mischievous.

What longtime animal-loving Karen learned was they were all there to notify her that she would be presented the Spencer Humanitarian Award at the black-tie SPCA fundraiser on Saturday, September 24, at the Omni Dallas Hotel.

Tickets are available here.

Round Robin September 19: The Great Texas Food Truck Rally, Fur Ball And Director’s Cut To Name A Few

Bouncing around Dallas on Saturday, September 19, was like a pinball machine that was going through a major power surge. In addition to a ton of morning activities (Tour Des Fleurs, One Love Fits All, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul’s Friends of the Poor Walk,  etc.), the P.M. fundraisers started in early afternoon. Over at the Winspear, it was Ladies Night Out for Twyla Tharp‘s 50th Anniversary performance. At the Dallas Children’s Theater, it was a gathering of young princesses in diva-like sunglasses attending a performance “Fancy Nancy: The Musical” for the Fancy Nancy and Friends Party. And then, of course, Garth was packing ‘em in at the American Airlines Center for two performances, which made downtown Dallas getting around even more interesting.

The Great Texas Food Truck Rally

The Great Texas Food Truck Rally

The Great Texas Food Truck Rally

It may have sounded like an 18-wheeler cauliflower, but the Executives In Action’s Great Texas Food Truck Rally was far from it.

Even in the glow of the afternoon sun, the crowds were growing to hear musical guests James Otto, CJ Solar, the Ray Johnston Band, Northern National and Cameron Ernst on-stage, and to line up at one of the 20+ food trucks lining the perimeter of the Reunion Tower Lawn. Among the trucks was the EIA’s new food truck that was created to provide random acts and snacks of kindness “without a profit in mind.”

Executives In Action's Random Acts And Snacks of Kindness

Executives In Action’s Random Acts And Snacks of Kindness

With EIA Founder Ashlee Kleinert waving to all from Reunion Tower and folks settling in for a long stay, the afternoon food festival wasn’t a first timer for this group. No, siree. Last year the event took ….no…overwhelmed Reverchon Park, with 10,000 showing up.

This year EIA Kimberly Westphall orchestrated mini-events to see how the Reunion acreage would handle the estimated 20,000 guests.

By the time the Great Texas Food Truck Rally was opening at 2 p.m., everything was pretty much locked down including portable ATM’s, volunteers like Nancy Gopez checking folks in, perfect views of the tower and Omni Dallas Hotel and, later, the setting sun in the west just past the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge.

Fur Ball

Brian Miller, Mark Soto, Rhonda Sargent Chambers and Phyllis and CJ Comu

Brian Miller, Mark Soto, Rhonda Sargent Chambers and Phyllis and CJ Comu

Speaking of the Omni Dallas, it was the site of the SPCA of Texas Fur Ball with 800 including Doris and Jack Jacobs, Brian Miller, Mark Soto, Rhonda Sargent Chambers and Phyllis (she’ll be co-chairing the 2016 Fur Ball with Kristen Greenberg) and CJ Comu in black tie and nearly a dozen in tails. Yup, adoptable pups were in playpens toward the back of the reception area on the third level. Very smart placement. Why? Because at points during the evening, the Kaminari Taiko Japanese Drumming Ensemble drummers let loose with earthquake-like performances on the second level near the escalator. As guests passed by the musicians, it was hard to look cool or cop an “I didn’t notice the music” attitude when the room shook.

Kaminari Taiko Japanese Drumming Ensemble

Kaminari Taiko Japanese Drumming Ensemble

Looking quite stunning were Honorary Co-Chairs Janelle and Larry Friedman.

Larry and Janelle Friedman

Larry and Janelle Friedman

Mike and Micki Rawlings

Mike and Micki Rawlings

Mayor Mike Rawlings and his bride Micki Rawlings popped by for a greet-and-meet with SPCA’s James Bias and co-chairs Stacey Kivowitz, Katy Murray and Jocelyn White. Then they quickly headed into the sunset, or rather to their vehicle. Seems Dallas’ first couple still had a couple more events on their schedule.

Katy Murray, James Bias, Jocelyn White and Stacey Kivowitz

Katy Murray, James Bias, Jocelyn White and Stacey Kivowitz

Too bad they didn’t stay around. In addition to Kelly Thompson receiving the Mary Spencer Humanitarian Award, there was a very special item in the live auction: a suite at American Airlines Center for the Tuesday night Garth Brooks concert plus a signed guitar. And to add to the sweetness of the deal, Garth was going to match the bid. Who won that one? Why Andrea Alcorn, who quickly became everybody’s BFF.

Director’s Cut

Maxwell and Jacqueline Anderson and Rachel and Michael Osburn

Maxwell and Jacqueline Anderson and Rachel and Michael Osburn

The Dallas Museum of Art’s Junior Associates were on to a mystery venture. They had been invited to attend the Director’s Cut for an announcement, but were not told where to show up until the last minute. It turned out to be at Harwood International. As they emerged from their cars, they were to follow a trail of stickers leading to the elevator. Once inside there was sticker on one of the buttons. Pushing the button, they found themselves on the second floor of the building and in a raw space that was filled to the gills with a photo booth, never-ending bar, loads of food and Dallas Museum of Art Eugene McDermott Director Max and Jacqueline Anderson in the back of the room with Co-Chairs Rachel and Michael Osburn.

Chela Moros, Tierney Kaufman and Vodi Cook

Chela Moros, Tierney Kaufman and Vodi Cook

Bonnie Karamalegos, Brent Crenshaw and Kadi Eykamp

Bonnie Karamalegos, Brent Crenshaw and Kadi Eykamp

As the body count rose, so did the room temperature. The valets had been told to expect 50, but more than 200 (Vodi Cook, Tierney Kaufman with fiancée Jared Hutchins, Bonnie Karamalegos, Brent Crenshaw, Kadi Eykamp, Kristina Kiik, Valerie Maniscalo, Taylor Zakarin, Rachel Roberts, Cameron Kimmel-Spivey, David Kimmel-Spivey, Tristan Fernandez, Michelle de Metz and Bill DeArman) showed up. By 8:40, the parking garage was already full!

Michelle de Metz and Bill DeArman

Michelle de Metz and Bill DeArman

Taylor Zakarin and Rachel Roberts

Taylor Zakarin and Rachel Roberts

Cameron Kimmel-Spivey, David Kimmel-Spivey and Tristian Fernandez

Cameron Kimmel-Spivey, David Kimmel-Spivey and Tristian Fernandez

When the time came for the announcement, Max let Jacqueline do the honors. The announcement was that the annual Affair of the Art had been cut, so JA’s could take on the April 23 Art Ball after-party. Instead of tears, cheers were heard and then it was back to partying.

Little did anyone suspect that another cut was in the works and that this would be the Andersons’ final public appearance for the DMA. Nine days later, Max announced that he was cutting ties with the DMA and heading to New York City to join up with New Cities Foundation.

Round Robin September 10: 2015 March of Dimes Signature Chefs Auction And SPCA Of Texas Fur Ball Patron Parties

Those filled-to-the-max Thursdays returned to the Dallas fundraising scene on September 10 throughout North Texas. Here are a couple of reports from the field:

Signature Chefs Dallas Sponsor Party

Tracy and Kent Rathbun hosted the 2015 March of Dimes Signature Chefs Auction Dallas Sponsor Party at their home. Kent had to host solo the first part of the evening. Seems Tracy was delayed due to a meeting at the Rathbun kids’ school.

For almost 20 years Kent has supported the March of Dimes and its mission to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality.

Sunie Solomon and Amy Turner*

Sunie Solomon and Amy Turner*

Event chairs Sunie Solomon and Amy Turner had the opportunity to thank the participating chefs and top sponsors in attendance for their support of this year’s Signature Chefs Auction. Kent also revealed his live auction package, Master the Experience – Take Two. In 2014, Rathbun’s Masters Tournament package went for the highest bid in event history at $67,500. This year, multiple couples/twosomes will have the opportunity to join Kent and his brother and fellow celebrity chef Kevin Rathbun in Augusta.

  • Here are the details on the Master The Experience — Take Two ($20,000 per couple/twosome)
    Round-trip airport transfers from My Private Driver
  • Two (2) guests will travel to August National Golf Club for the 2016 Masters Tournament
  • Exclusive ‘Under the Stars’ dinner with Chefs Kent Rathbun and Kevin Rathbun, Buffalo Trace whiskey and many fine wine purveyors to kick off the Masters in style
  • Two (2) Masters passes for Thursday and Friday
  • Accommodations for two (2) at Jameson Suites Hotel for three (3) nights
  • Transfers for two (2) to and from the Jameson to the 1018 Club
  • Dine at the illustrious 1018 Club for all meals on Thursday and Friday, especially prepared by Chef Kent Rathbun and his team
Diane and Hal Brierley*

Diane and Hal Brierley*

Kent will kick off the March of Dimes Signature Chefs Auction Presented by Nancy C. and Richard R. Rogers/Mary Kay Inc. with another Surprise Raffle ($100 per ticket). Other live auction packages include: a South African Safari, NYE in the Big D, Sea Island Escape, FT33 Farm-to-Table Dinner, Aspen Adventure; Christopher Martin’s Kidz Creations painting, Mexican Tequila Tasting Tour and the Dallas Sports Extravaganza. Auction preview videos will be posted on in late September.

The March of Dimes Signature Chefs Auction Presented by Nancy C. and Richard R. Rogers/Mary Kay Inc. is scheduled for 6 p.m. on Thursday, October 22, at the Omni Dallas Hotel.

Dwight Harvey, Jeramie Robison, Kent Rathbun, Gilbert Garza, Matt McCallister, Nilton "Junior" Borges, Joel Orsini and Richard Blankenship*

Dwight Harvey, Jeramie Robison, Kent Rathbun, Gilbert Garza, Matt McCallister, Nilton “Junior” Borges, Joel Orsini and Richard Blankenship*

The event will feature signature samplings from 19 of Dallas’ top chefs: Richard Blankenship of CBD Provisions, Nilton “Junior” Borges of Uchi, Donald Chalko of Texas Spice at the Omni Dallas Hotel, Richard Chamberlain of Chamberlain’s Steak & Chop House/Fish Market Grill, Samir Dhurandhar of Nick & Sam’s Grill/Steakhouse and Coal Vines, Omar Flores of Casa Rubia, Gilbert Garza of Suze Restaurant, Dwight Harvey of Off the Bone Barbeque, David Holben of Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House, Dan Landsberg of Dragonfly at Hotel Zaza, Matt McCallister of FT33/Filament, Kent Rathbun of Kent Rathbun Concepts, Jeramie Robison of Shinsei Restaurant, Stephen Rogers of Gemma, Abraham Salum of Komali /Salum, Jim Severson of Sevy’s Grill, Nathan Tate of Boulevardier / Rapscallion, Anthony Van Camp of SĒR Steak + Spirits and Chris Vogeli of III Forks.

For more information on the event visit

Fur Ball 2015 Patron Party

Katy Murray, Jocelyn White and Stacey Kivowitz**

Katy Murray, Jocelyn White and Stacey Kivowitz**

The view was magnificent from Stacey and Don Kivowitz‘s penthouse in the heart of the Park Cities for the Fur Ball 2015 Patron Party from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. A stunning sunset lit downtown Dallas with a gentle glow while patrons sipped lychee martinis, champagne, wine and cocktails and chatted with excitement about the upcoming gala while being serenaded by pianist Erik Barns.

A bounty of egg rolls, pot stickers, sushi, chocolate covered strawberries, macaroons and chocolate truffles were served. The evening’s suburb staffing was provided thanks to KMG Events.

Laura and Mark Flagg and Leslie Tipping**

Laura and Mark Flagg and Leslie Tipping**

As the evening wound down, words of appreciation filled the air. Don thanked the evening’s sponsor, Northern Trust, for their gracious support. Northern Trust President Mark Flagg waxed poetic in celebration of the special bond between people and their pets. SPCA of Texas President and CEO James Bias thanked the Kivowitz’s, Northern Trust and the Fur Ball’s three chairs: Stacey Kivowitz, Katy Murray and Jocelyn White.

James Bias and Jan Rees-Jones**

James Bias and Jan Rees-Jones**

Guests included Jan and Trevor Rees-Jones, Karen Urie, Kelly Thompson, Don Short, Michelle and John Krick, Leslie Tipping, Marsha and Richard Gray, Cassie Evans Decker and Carol Nelson.

The Honorary Co-Chairs for Fur Ball 2015 are Janelle and Larry Friedman, Jan Miller and Jeff Rich and Lynn and Allan McBee. The Fur Ball 2015 committee includes Artists for Animals: Craighead Green Gallery, Athlete for Animals’ Dallas Stars Craig Ludwig, Underwriting Chair Claire Collins Schwarz, Underwriting Committee Members Joyce Fox and Stephanie Fox, Auction Chair Nicole Rosenblum, Auction Co-Chair Mary Elizabeth Kappes and Auction Committee Members Phyllis Comu, Lona Crabb, Sandra Fite, Lezlie Goad, Cindy Lindsley, Kelly Thompson, Denise Wallace and Lane Wells.

All money raised through Fur Ball will support the SPCA of Texas, as the organization rescues, heals and finds homes for more than 50,000 animals each year.

* Photo credit: Rhiannon Lee Photography 
** Photo credit: Quoc Cong/XO Photography