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

SPCA Of Texas’ Paws Cause “Fetches” $115,000 To Benefit Mary Spencer Spay/Neuter And Wellness Clinic At Village Fair And The South Dallas Initiative

Perhaps more than ever, the need for spay and neuter has been moved to the top of the list of longtime solutions for the area glut of stray animals. With such city officials as Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings, City Councilperson Monica Alonzo and Dallas City Attorney Faith Johnson in attendance to drive the point home, the SPCA Of Texas‘ Annual Paws Cause — “Pawsitively Dallas Strong” — at the Jan Rees-Jones Animal Care Center on Sunday, January 29, took on an added importance in fundraising for the Mary Spencer Spay/Neuter and Wellness Clinic at Village Fair and the South Dallas Pet Initiative. The result was netting $115,000 for the program. Here is a report from the field:

Monica R. Alonzo*

Faith Johnson*

On Sunday, January 29, the SPCA of Texas’ Paws Cause, “Pawsitively Dallas Strong,” at the SPCA of Texas’ Jan Rees-Jones Animal Care Center saw more than 300 animal lovers come together to benefit the Mary Spencer Spay/Neuter and Wellness Clinic at Village Fair and the South Dallas Pet Initiative. The event attendees were welcomed with a purple search light, a purple carpet, dancing dog and cat mascots and actual dogs and cats galore.

2017 Paws Cause’s “Pawsitively Dallas Strong”*

Inside, guests enjoyed gourmet food from some of Dallas’ finest chefs, imbibed luscious libations–including the “Pawsitive Delight” signature drink, danced the night away to musical entertainment by Goga, took part in the Bone Appetite restaurant drawing and had their pictures snapped at the Flipbook photo booth. A raffle of high-end items tempted attendees with fine art, photography packages, pet care products, designer purses, fine jewelry and more. A highly successful live auction and Pony Up for Paws fundraiser completed the night.

Haute cuisine stations from several of the Metroplex’s best restaurants, including Salum, Parigi, Pink Magnolia, Cane Rosso, Whistle Britches and 3015 at Trinity Groves tempted guests with everything from  sumptuous savories to decadent desserts.

Paws Cause 2017 was a tail-wagging success thanks to 2017 Paws Cause Honorary Chair  Andrea Alcorn, and the Steering Committee, which included: Jane Arrington, Steve Atkinson, Rebecca Belew, Diane Brierley, Andie Comini, Phyllis Comu, Giana DePaul, Gwen Echols, Kristen Greenberg, Whitney Keltch, Christina Miller, Pam Ragon, Abraham Salum, Gloria Snead, Karen Urie and Cathy Zigrossi

At the pinnacle of the party, Mayor Mike Rawlings first addressed the crowd saying, “The spay and neuter initiative that the SPCA is taking on is the lynchpin of the plan…to solve the situation in South Dallas that is hurting neighborhoods. We’ve got tens of thousands of dogs that need to have this operation and I believe that when we do that we will not only make the lives of those dogs better, but the lives of the neighbors and the strength of Dallas will come with it.”

Andrea Alcorn and Karen Urie*

Then, SPCA of Texas Senior Vice President Debra Burns, Karen Urie, Andrea Alcorn, SPCA of Texas President/CEO James Bias and SPCA of Texas Board Chair Katy Murray took turns thanking the guests and encouraging them to give. Dallas County District Attorney Faith Johnson spoke in support of the partnership between the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office’s Animal Cruelty Unit and the SPCA of Texas.

The event netted $115,000 for the Mary Spencer Spay/Neuter and Wellness Clinic at Village Fair and the SPCA of Texas’ South Dallas Pet Initiative.

All proceeds from the Paws Cause event benefit the Mary Spencer Spay/Neuter and Wellness Clinic at Village Fair and fund spay and neuter efforts in the Dallas community. This includes the SPCA of Texas’ programs that aim to support the pets and people of South Dallas to help address the serious stray animal, pet homelessness and pet overpopulation issues, also supporting the preservation of the bond between pets and people and keeping pets and the community healthy and safe.

Angela Thompson, Mary Spencer and Ann Marcus*

James Bias and Jan Rees-Jones*

Attendees also included Dallas Mayor Pro Tem Monica Alonzo, Jan and Trevor Rees-Jones, Bobbi Snyder, Stacey and Arnie Verbeek, Bob Minyard, Angela Thompson, Candace Rubin, Ann Marcus, Hal Brierley, Leldon Echols, Marsha Pendleton-Gray and Dr. Richard Gray, Mary and Skip Trimble, Stacey and Don Kivowitz, Mary Spencer, Betsy Orton and Sharon Fancher, Mike and Catherine Merritt and Claire and Kurt Schwarz.

Event sponsors included:

  • Diamond Sponsors: Andrea Alcorn, Friedman & Feiger LLP and Dr. Richard Gray and Marsha Pendleton Gray
  • Gold Sponsors: Diane and Hal Brierley, the Durham Family Foundation, Forty Five Ten, Gwen and Leldon Echols, In Memory of Guy T. Marcus, Trinity Industries Inc. and Patricia Villareal and Tom Leatherbury
  • Silver Sponsors: Ralph Lauren – Highland Park and Skip and Mary L. Trimble
  • Copper Sponsors: Sharon Devereux, Stacey and Don Kivowitz, Katy Murray, Ray and Patricia A. Smerge, Pam Ragon, Redfin Real Estate, Claire and Kurt Schwarz and Sandra Urie and Frank Herron
  • Bronze Sponsors: MaryLynn M. Black, Karen and Phil Drayer, Cassie Evans and Hattie Pearl Decker, Hillary Hurst and Mark Schwarz, Bobby Minyard, Carol Orr, Penny Rivenbark Patton, Lucilo A. Pena, Candace Rubin, Mary Spencer, Susie Swanson, Chad West and Mr. and Mrs. David Yost.
* Photo credit: Thomas Garza Photography

To Kick Off The Holiday Season, The SPCA Of Texas’ Paws Cause Crew Sipped And Shopped At Ralph Lauren

Having recovered from Thanksgiving feasting and family-get-togethers, the SPCA of TexasPaws Cause leadership and friends including Webster the Chihuahua held forth at Ralph Lauren in Highland Park Village on Thursday, December 1. It was just perfect for picking out that outfit for the upcoming Paws Cause at the Jan Rees-Jones Animal Care Center on Sunday, January 29. Here’s a report from the field:

Light from Ralph Lauren Holiday candles glinted off of the magnificent crystal chandelier gracing the entryway of the Ralph Lauren Boutique at Highland Park Village on Wednesday, December 1, where ladies and gentlemen gathered in the holiday spirit to celebrate Paws Cause and shop for friends and family, all to benefit the SPCA of Texas. Guests sipped wine and champagne and nibbled decadent macaroons as they browsed.

Nancy Latner, Mary Spencer and Susie Swanson*

Sincere thanks to  Susie Swanson for hosting and to the Ralph Lauren store for welcoming the festive crowd and for donating a portion of the proceeds from the event’s sales to the SPCA of Texas. Many of the guests were spotted walking out with armfuls of beribboned boxes and bags!

Guests included Honorary Chair Andrea Alcorn, steering committee member and heartbeat of Paws Cause 2017 Karen Urie, SPCA of Texas Board Chair Katy Murray, Susie Swanson, Diane Brierley, Gloria Snead, Penny Rivenbark, Judy Davis, Penny Patton, Kevin Coffey, Mary Spencer, Jocelyn White, Nancy Latner, Sharon Fancher, Steve Atkinson, Kristen Greenberg, SPCA of Texas President/CEO James Bias and SPCA of Texas Senior Vice President of Development Debra Burns.

Steve Atkinson and Kristen Greenberg*

Jocelyn White and Webster*

Katy Murray, James Bias and Karen Urie*

Paws Cause will be held on Sunday, January 29, from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Jan Rees-Jones Animal Care Center at 2400 Lone Star Drive in West Dallas. Paws Cause is committed to supporting the SPCA of Texas’ programs that aim to support the pets and people of South Dallas through sponsorships and donations to help address the serious stray animal and animal overpopulation issue. For more information, visit www.pawscausedallas.com.

JUST IN: Marketing Executive Andrea Alcorn To Serve As Honorary Chair For Upcoming SPCA’s Paws Cause

If you haven’t already got your 2017 calendar, hustle and get it now! Believe it or not, dates are being lined up and even the usual January ho-hums are turning into “Oh, my’s”.

Why, Saturday, January 28, is looking like a collision course of fundraising with the 19th Annual Bishop’s Gala (with Huey Lewis and the News but without a Bishop), the ChildCare Group‘s Great Adventure Hunt at the Perot and The Birthday Party Project celebrating its own fifth birthday at The Bomb Factory.

Andrea Alcorn (File photo)

Andrea Alcorn (File photo)

Now word comes that Sunday, January 29, is not going to be a stay-at-home day. The annual SPCA of TexasPaws Cause is gonna be partying it up at the Jan Rees-Jones Animal Center from 6 to 9 p.m.

This year’s theme is “Pawsitively Dallas Strong” and the honorary chair will be blonde marketing exec Andrea Alcorn, who is also serving as president of KidneyTexas this year. That gal is gonna be busy!

Back to Paws Cause: This year’s event will be grazing feast with food from Salum, Parigi, Pink Magnolia and more!

Benefiting the Mary Spencer Spay/Neuter and Wellness Clinic at Village Fair, the event is being coordinated by the 2017 Steering Committee including Jane Arrington, Steve Atkinson, Blythe Beck, Rebecca Belew, Diane Brierley, Andie Comini, Phyllis Comu, Giana DePaul, Gwen Echols, Kristen Greenberg, Christina Miller, Janice Provost, Pam Ragon, Abraham Salum, Karen Urie and Cathy Zigrossi.

According to insiders, the Rees-Jones Animal Center residents are going to be all gussied up for the evening with hopes of impressing potential new BFFs.  

Tickets are available here.

Suggestions For A Safe Howl-oween

With Halloween approaching, parents know the drill about checking candy and keeping a watchful eye on little costumed folks not making the rounds alone.

Trick-or-treaters (File photo)

Trick-or-treaters (File photo)

But precautions also extend to pet owners. For instance, candy and pooches don’t mix well. Chocolate may be dandy for humans, but it can be lethal for dogs.

Pooch (File photo)

Pooch (File photo)

The SPCA of Texas has provided the following reminders on how to take care of critters on the night of goblins and ghouls.

  • Keep pets away from live flame decorations like candles and jack-o-lanterns, and restrict your pet’s access to hanging decorations such as streamers. Pets are curious and can become tangled or even choke if they chew on the decorations.
  • Pets may be terrified by tiny gremlins carrying big, orange, pumpkins full of sugar… wouldn’t you? If you have a protective dog that might feel threatened by strangers, keep him/her away from the door when trick-or-treaters arrive. Keep pets in a familiar place with lots of toys and soothing music to distract them from the doorbell.
  • Don’t let the family dog accompany the kids on their trick-or-treat outing. Although bringing your pooch may seem like a fun family outing, your pet would likely feel much safer and more comfortable in his or her own home away from all the Halloween festivities.
  • Make sure your pet’s Halloween costume includes a collar and identification tags, so you can be contacted if he or she does slip away during all the Halloween commotion. In addition to identification tags, ensure your pet is microchipped and the information is current, too.
  • And of course, if the thought of more homeless, unwanted dogs and cats scares you like it does the SPCA of Texas, you can help us spay and neuter more pets by donating today.
Black cat (File photo)

Black cat (File photo)

While in the past some shelter have not adopted out black cats around Halloween, SPCA’s Maura Davies reports, “We are not suspending the adoption of black cats until after Halloween or at any time during the year. We do not have any reason to believe that black cats adopted from us are at risk of being cruelly treated if adopted around Halloween or any time. Tragically, animals of all species, breeds and coat colors can become victims of animal cruelty or abuse any day of the year. Our Animal Cruelty Investigations Unit is here for those animals.

“We stand behind our wonderful staff who facilitate each adoption and our regular adoption counseling processes that ensure that all of our pets are adopted into loving homes. Further, we contact all of our adopters to follow up and offer any needed support after the adoption takes place.”

SPCA Of Texas’ Fur Ball Was A Howling Success And A Purr-fect Delight Despite A Glitch In A Donkey Offering

Sometimes the best intentions have a glitch or two. And when you’re dealing with animals, it usually ends up bringing smiles to the face or chuckles. Such was the situation at the SPCA of TexasFur Ball on Saturday, September 24, at the Omni Dallas Hotel. It seems that the evening’s emcee offered to be photographed wearing a faux donkey’s head with the winning bidder. The price? A four-figure number. Alas, things didn’t go as planned as the offer dwindled down eventually to a lower three-figure number. While that “asinine” situation didn’t make it to the following report from the field, the evening was indeed memorable anyhow, thanks to Chair Phyllis Comu:

The SPCA of Texas’ Fur Ball 2016, “Shedding Light on Their Future,” was held on Saturday, September 24 from 6:30 p.m. to midnight at the Omni Dallas Hotel. The elegantly futuristic, totally sold-out, black-tie evening included dinner, dancing and live and silent auctions for over 1,100 guests. Chair Phyllis Comu announced that thanks to the generosity of sponsors, patrons and guests, Fur Ball 2016 raised funds to help the SPCA of Texas serve 50,000 animals and their people in 2016 and beyond.

Steve Kemble, Rhonda Sargent Chambers and LeeAnne Locken*

Steve Kemble, Rhonda Sargent Chambers and LeeAnne Locken*

Guests were greeted with passed bubbly and savory hors d’oeuvres as they made their way up to the Omni’s Dallas Ballroom. During cocktail hour, elegantly clad ladies and gentlemen walked the purple carpet and chatted with Emcee/Real Housewives of Dallas LeeAnne Locken and America’s Sassiest Lifestyle Guru Steve Kemble about everything from what they were wearing to why supporting the animals is so important.

Kelly Thompson*

Kelly Thompson*

Also, a three-piece combo from Limelight jazzed it up and a whole passel of puppies from the SPCA of Texas’ iFoster program (all spayed and neutered!) romped and played as they were cooed over and petted by the glittering guests. Competition was fierce at the over 300-item silent auction, which featured everything from sports memorabilia, fabulous spa packages, high-end jewelry, dining experiences (from the fun to the fine) and so much more.

Cathy Vieth, Shane Walker and Tommy Vieth*

Cathy Vieth, Shane Walker and Tommy Vieth*

Each beautifully appointed table was graced with gorgeous, glowing floral centerpieces thank to Flower Reign by Shane Walker. The delightful dinner included the Space Station Stack Salad with heirloom tomatoes, Buffalo mozzarella and basil with a balsamic drizzle and an herb-seared petite filet of beef and prosciutto as well as a spinach- and mushroom-stuffed chicken breast with sweet potato, broccolini, baby carrot, acorn squash and blistered cherry tomato with bourbon sauce. The delicious dessert, the Galaxy Tartlet, was blackberry-filled shortbread with sage mint gel, peppercorn Chantilly and was dusted with edible glitter.

Katy Murray*

Katy Murray*

Emcee LeeAnne put the fun into fundraising with her energy and love of 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 will be bringing to South Dallas in the future to help transform the community for people and animals, improving public safety and providing for the welfare of animals. SPCA of Texas Board Chair and Chief Financial Officer for A. H. Belo Corporation Katy Murray thanked the 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.

The SPCA of Texas also presented the 2016 Spencer Humanitarian Award during Fur Ball. Named for warm-hearted entrepreneur and long-tenured, past SPCA of Texas Board member Mary Spencer, the Spencer Humanitarian Awards recognize an individual, company or group whose extraordinary efforts have made a positive difference for animals. Mary presented the 2016 recipient of the Spencer Humanitarian Award to Karen Urie, a dedicated SPCA of Texas volunteer, board member and animal advocate. Karen’s voice for animals speaks loud and clear, and the SPCA of Texas is indeed fortunate to have her support. Karen Urie is currently a real estate agent and internal marketing consultant with Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate.

Senior Vice President for Development Debra Burns wrapped up by thanking guests, celebrating the generosity of North Texans for their gifts to the SPCA of Texas on North Texas Giving Day, just two days prior, and bringing home why supporting the SPCA of Texas is so important to change the lives of thousands of animals, especially those living in poverty.

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, a stunning black diamond ring, decadent cases of wine 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.

Another was a total surprise! Michael “Mico” Rodriguez generously, and on the spur of the moment, gave a 100-guest dinner, complete with tequila tasting and more, to the auction, and the package just about brought the house down! And, the biggest wow of the live auction came when Auctioneer Mike Jones announced the final package of the evening: 12 luxury suite tickets to Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter Adele’s sold-out performance on November 2nd!

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 under a stunning, purple-lit chandelier that twinkled like a thousand stars until after Midnight.

Kristen Greenberg, Sandra Fite and Phyllis Comu*

Kristen Greenberg, Sandra Fite and Phyllis Comu*

Fur Ball 2016 was a tail-wagging success thanks to honorary chairs D’Andra Simmons and Jeremy Lock, Anne and Steve Stodghill and Drs. Wendy and John Vandermeer; Chair Phyllis Comu; Co-Chair Kristen Greenberg; Auction Chair Sandra Fite; and event emcee LeeAnne Locken. The evening’s production was provided by Nomad Productions and RSC Show Productions. Photographers for the evening were Bret Redman and Gregory Martin.

The SPCA of Texas sincerely thanks special partners, including

  • Rescuer sponsor: Jan and Trevor Rees-Jones.
  • Defender sponsors: Linda Genneken, Marsha Pendleton-Gray and Richard Gray, Stacey and Don Kivowitz, Katy Murray, Patricia Villareal and Tom Leatherbury.
  • Patron Party Sponsor: Northern Trust.
  • Liberator sponsors: Diane and Hal Brierley, H-E-B/Central Market, Hill A. and Rene Feinberg, Hillary Hurst, Anne and Steve Stodghill and Sandra Urie.
  • Advocate sponsors: Alphagraphics at Market Center, Andrea Alcorn, BKD, LLP, CityVet, Earthwater/Phyllis & CJ Comu, Gwen and Leldon Echols, Sandra and Colin Fite/TEAM FITE-O, Gay and Lesbian Fund for Dallas, Robert Goldberg, Grand Spa, Kristen and Scott Greenberg, Dean Gresham and Caleb Hernandez, Ken Hatley, Teresa Henderson, Hollywood Feed, Robert C. Horne, Jimmy Choo, Jeri Kleiman, Jack Knox, Suzanne and David Palmlund, PwC, Joseph Quinn, Pam Ragon, Residences at the Stoneleigh, Steven Rivard, Law Office of Claire Collins Schwarz and Mary Spencer, U.S. Trust, Bank of America and Drs. John & Wendy Vandermeer.
  • Exclusive Print/Digital Media Sponsor: PaperCity Magazine.
  • Proud Official Wine Sponsor: Barefoot Wine and Bubbly and Edna Valley Vineyard.

Guests included Andrea Alcorn, Heidi and Bill Dillon, Fox 4’s Jenny Anchondo and Jennifer Meyers, WFAA-TV Channel 8’s Wex Houx and Monica Hernandez, Angie Barrett, Jocelyn White, Pamela Thompson Moayedi, Pamela Martin, Cynthia Smoot, Cathy and Tommy Vieth, Tricia Sims, Shane Walker and Billy Fulmer, Betsy Orton and Sharon Fancher, Brian Walker, Gus Hinojosa, Teresa and Chic Henderson, David and Carolyn Kubes, Pam Ragon, Danny Tobey and Patricia Villareal and Tom Leatherbury.

Fur Ball is DFW’s salute to the bond between people and their pets and a celebration of the SPCA of Texas’ important mission to provide every animal exceptional care and a loving home. All money raised through Fur Ball 2016 will go directly to the SPCA of Texas to help rescue, heal and find homes for thousands of animals.

Next year’s event is already in the works. Fur Ball 2016 will be held on Saturday, September 30, at the Omni Dallas.

* Photo credit: Bret Redman

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.

MySweetCharity Opportunity: SPCA Of Texas Fur Ball 2016

According to Fur Ball 2016 Chair Phyllis Comu and Co-Chair Kristen Greenberg,

Phyllis Comu and Kristen Greenberg*

Phyllis Comu and Kristen Greenberg*

“We are beyond thrilled to chair the SPCA of Texas’ Fur Ball 2016, ‘Shedding Light on Their Future!’ The event is DFW’s salute to the bond between people and their pets. As the oldest, largest animal welfare organization in North Texas, the SPCA of Texas helps local pets…now and in the future.

“The black-tie gala will include dinner, dancing, headline entertainment by Limelight and live and silent auctions for over 1,000 guests to be held in the Omni Dallas’ largest ballroom on Saturday, September 24, at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are available today at www.furballdallas.com. Individual tickets are $225, patron tickets are $300 and a table for 10 is $2,000.

“Fur Ball 2016 is sure to be a tail-wagging success, thanks to Honorary Co-Chairs D’Andra Simmons and Jeremy Lock, Anne and Steve Stodghill and Drs. Wendy and John Vandermeer and Auction Chair Sandra Fite. We’re also excited to announce that LeeAnne Locken is M.C. for Fur Ball this year!

Karen Urie is the recipient of the 2016 Mary Spencer Humanitarian Award. This award, named for animal advocate extraordinaire Mary Spencer, honors individuals and organizations that have made a significant difference in the lives of animals in the North Texas Community. Karen is the marketing and business development director for Dave Perry-Miller and his team. It was her volunteer effort in 2007 when she was on the Paws Cause event committee that first introduced her to the SPCA of Texas and since then she has been actively involved with a myriad of SPCA of Texas activities and events and is currently a board member. Karen’s voice for animals is loud and clear, and the SPCA of Texas is fortunate indeed to have her support.

Fur Ball 2016*

Fur Ball 2016*

“All money raised through Fur Ball 2016 will benefit the SPCA of Texas to help rescue, heal and find homes for thousands of animals. The SPCA of Texas is the leading animal welfare agency in North Texas, serving 50,000 pets and people in eight counties each year.

“Fur Ball 2016 is sure to be elegant, out of this world fun, all in the name of helping our furry friends.”

* Photos provided by SPCA of Texas

The Animal Loving Crowd Shopped Jimmy Choos Heels In Preparation For The Annual Fur Ball

Nancy Rogers had her work cut out for her on Wednesday, April 6. She had a full evening of fundraising rounds to make and the very first stop was Highland Park Village’s Jimmy Choo to check out the footwear goodies benefiting the SPCA of Texas. Here’s a report from the field:

Jimmy Choo shoes*

Jimmy Choo shoes*

The gorgeous and well-heeled mingled with the latest pumps, platforms and peep-toes at the Jimmy Choo boutique at Highland Park Village in Dallas on Wednesday, April 6. And it was all to benefit the SPCA of Texas in partnership with this year’s Fur Ball Gala.

Brightly clad guests sparkled with springtime freshness as they browsed Jimmy Choo’s gorgeous Spring Summer collection while they nibbled delicate canapés thanks to KMG Events. Buoyant beverages refreshed attendees as the sun gently dipped into the horizon over the rococo roofline of Highland Park Village.

Jimmy Choo donated a portion of the proceeds from purchases at the event to the SPCA of Texas. Special thanks to Jimmy Choo and boutique manager Catherine Kemp for hosting the party.

Fur Ball 2016, Shedding Light on Their Future, will be held on Saturday, September 24, at the Omni Dallas Hotel from 6:30 p.m. to midnight. LeeAnne Locken will be M.C. for the evening. For more information, visit www.furballdallas.com.

Kristen Greenberg and Sandra Fite*

Kristen Greenberg and Sandra Fite*

Fur Ball Chair Phyllis Comu, Co-Chair Kristen Greenberg and Auction Chair Sandra Fite, along with the Fur Ball committee, will make this a gala to remember. The honorary co-chairs for Fur Ball 2016 are Faye Briggs, D’Andra Simmons and Jeremy Lock, Anne and Steve Stodghill and Drs. Wendy and John Vandermeer. The Fur Ball 2016 committee includes Lisa Kirtley Ledbetter (Marketing & Communications), Mary Lozano Buster, Giana DePaul, Diane Faison-Roe, Lisa Fox, Cameron Gummer, Alissa Kaiser, Stacey Kivowitz, Paula Leone, Cindy Lindsley, Nicole Sisneros, Kelly Thompson, Terry Wright Stimpson, Denise Wallace and Anja Woodson.

Nancy Rogers, Phyllis Comu and Nancy Rogers*

Nancy Rogers, Phyllis Comu and Nancy Rogers*

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.

Attendees included Diane Brierley, Anne and Steve Stodghill, Phyllis and C.J. Comu, Katy Murray, Holly Forsythe, Nancy Rogers, Rhonda Sargent Chambers, Tricia Sims, Carmen Surgent, Kerry Sullivan, Dan Pritchett, Bob Manzano and Karen Urie.

* Photo credit: QC Cong/XO Photography

SPCA Of Texas Party Animals Had A Cosmic Experience At Matthew Trent Jewelry Design Studio

While the Center for BrainHealth was celebrating at the Dallas Country Club about new members of the team and the progress of the Institute for Brain Performance on Tuesday, December 8, the animal loving SPCA-ers were surrounded by a lot of bling and bubbly. Here is a report from the field:

Matthew Trent Jewelry Design Studio*

Matthew Trent Jewelry Design Studio*

It was a festively out of this world evening as friends gathered at Matthew Trent Jewelry Design Studio at the Plaza at Preston Center for a Cosmic Holiday Celebration to support the SPCA of Texas’ upcoming Fur Ball 2016! Guests were all decked out in holiday splendor, and joined Chair Phyllis Comu, Co-Chair Kristen Greenberg and Auction Chair Sandra Fite for a cosmically fantastic night filled with holiday cheer.

Kristen Greenberg, Lisa Letbetter and Sandra Fite*

Kristen Greenberg, Lisa Letbetter and Sandra Fite*

Gorgeously delicate dog bone necklaces in gold, white gold and silver, custom-made by Matthew Trent Jewelry Design Studio just for the soiree, along with other dazzlingly bejeweled masterpieces glistened brightly on display. The festive lights of the Plaza at Preston Center shone in the background, complementing the delightfully warm glow of the party.

Champagne and wine were passed while guests enjoyed a plethora of delectable delicacies which included petit Caesar salad in parmesan nests, apricot and goat cheese lollipops, prosciutto-wrapped asparagus, guacamole in a corn chip cup, a cheese platter and chocolate and gingerbread cake balls. The evening’s superb staffing was provided thanks to KMG Events.

Lori Trent, Kiley Trent and Leslie Herrman*

Lori Trent, Kiley Trent and Leslie Herrman*

Sincere thanks to Matthew Trent Jewelry Design Studio for welcoming the festive crowd and for donating 10% of proceeds from the evening’s sales to the SPCA of Texas! Special thanks to Matthew and Lori Trent and Kiley Trent and her fiancée Mac Kelly and their dog Melee (a SPCA of Texas alum!) for hosting the beautiful bash. Matthew Trent is known for creating the best possible experience for every customer by creating a piece of jewelry like no other, utilizing our creative designers, knowledgeable jewelers and passionate employees.

Phyllis Comu and Jan Rees-Jones*

Phyllis Comu and Jan Rees-Jones*

The Cosmic Holiday Celebration was held in support of the SPCA of Texas’ Fur Ball 2016, DFW’s salute to the bond between people and their pets. The elegant black-tie gala will delight the senses with dancing, headline entertainment and live and silent auctions. SPCA of Texas’ Fur Ball 2016 will be held on Saturday, September 24, from 6:30 p.m. – midnight at the Omni Dallas.

All money raised through the Cosmic Holiday Celebration and Fur Ball 2016 will go towards the SPCA of Texas’ important mission to rescue, heal, and find loving homes for vulnerable animals

Guests included Jan Rees-JonesKatie Murray (SPCA of Texas Board Member), Rhonda Sargent Chambers, Karen Lukin, Cynthia Smoot, Stacey Kivowitz (SPCA of Texas Board Member), Dr. Larry and Joan Rogers, George and Barbara Langdon, Mary Lozano, Cassie Evans Decker (SPCA of Texas Board Member) and her precious daughter Hattie Pearl Decker, Joyce Fox and Kellie Thompson.

* Photo credit: Thomas Garza

MySweetWishList: SPCA Of Texas

According to SPCA of Texas President James Bias,

James Bias*

James Bias*

“Our wish for the SPCA of Texas this holiday season is for the generous North Texas community to provide financial support for our Animal Cruelty Investigations Unit to save lives of abused and neglected animals.

“Contributions make our work possible. It is our donors and volunteers that allowed us to rescue a dog named Phoenix. We found Phoenix living chained underneath an enclosed porch outside a trailer home in Dallas this year. His back was so badly injured that a jagged scar traces down his back to this day.

Phoenix*

Phoenix*

Phoenix*

Phoenix*

“Despite the physical and emotional trauma, miraculously, he is the most loving dog imaginable. Our Animal Cruelty Investigations Unit rescued him, a judge awarded custody to us, and we did everything in our power to heal his wounds. Phoenix’s previous owner was criminally charged and found guilty of Misdemeanor animal cruelty. And I’m so pleased to share with you that after extensive treatment, this precious dog is living in luxury with a fantastic family who dote on him devotedly.

SPCA of Texas*

SPCA of Texas*

“At the SPCA of Texas, investigating reports of animal cruelty is one of the toughest but one of the most vital parts of our mission. Sadly, animal abuse in North Texas and beyond doesn’t seem to be lessening. Each year, the SPCA of Texas receives approximately 4,000 calls from people reporting cases of animal cruelty, and this year, we’ve rescued over 2,000 animals in distress from all over North Texas.

“This is truly important, impactful work for animals who otherwise would not be with us today. But changing more lives comes at a bigger cost, and the SPCA of Texas relies on the generosity of donors to accomplish our mission. You can be confident that a gift to the SPCA of Texas is used wisely, as 84 cents of each dollar goes directly to animal care, with only 16 cents of each dollar going to overhead. This achievement is something we are proud of and it gives our donors the confidence to invest in us.

“Your gift to the SPCA of Texas will change and save lives. Make a gift today. You could change an animal’s life as well as your own! To give, visit www.spca.org. Thank you from the bottom of our paws!”

– By James Bias, CAWA, SPCA of Texas president

* Graphic and photo provided by SPCA of Texas

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 signaturechefsdallas.com 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 signaturechefsdallas.com.

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

MySweetCharity Opportunity: SPCA Of Texas Fur Ball 2015

According to SPCA of Texas’ Fur Ball 2015 Chair Stacey Kivowitz,

“What’s better than raising money? Raising money for our four-legged furry friends, of course! You can expect the impossible at the SPCA of Texas’ Fur Ball 2015, “Mission: PAWSsible: You Only Live Twice,” and this year, we’re raising it up a notch with live entertainment by Haute Chili, the Vanity Fair Oscar Party band that has performed with Elton John, Ringo Starr and Christina Aguilera, just to name a few.

SPCA of Texas Fur Ball 2015*

SPCA of Texas Fur Ball 2015*

“The black-tie evening will include dinner, dancing and live and silent auctions for over 1,000 guests to be held in the Omni Dallas’ largest ballroom on Saturday, September 19, at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are available today at www.spca.org/furball2015. Individual tickets are $225, or be a high roller and buy a $2,000 table for 10 friends or colleagues.

Janelle and Larry Friedman (File photo)

Janelle and Larry Friedman (File photo)

Lynn and Allan McBee (File photo)

Lynn and Allan McBee (File photo)

Jeff Rich and Jan Miller (File photo)

Jeff Rich and Jan Miller (File photo)

“Fur Ball 2015 is sure to be a tail-wagging success, thanks to Honorary Co-Chairs Janelle and Larry Friedman, Lynn and Allan McBee and Jan Miller and Jeff Rich; my fellow Event Co-Chairs Katy Murray and Jocelyn White; Underwriting Chair Claire Schwarz; and Auction Chair Nicole Rosenblum. The SPCA of Texas is also proud to announce a new sponsor this year, Northern Trust.

“All money raised through Fur Ball 2015 will benefit the SPCA of Texas to help rescue, heal and find homes for thousands of animals. The SPCA of Texas is the leading animal welfare agency in North Texas, serving 50,000 pets and people in eight counties each year.”

* Graphic provided by the SPCA of Texas

Philanthropist Faye Briggs Opened Her Estate For The SPCA Of Texas’ Paws Cause Patrons’ Party

Faye Briggs

Faye Briggs

The moment the doors opened at Faye Briggs’ home, the cars were lined up in the driveway. No, Faye wasn’t giving away money. She was hostessing the patron party for the SPCA of Texas’ Paws Cause fundraiser.

Evidently Faye and Mother Nature had cut a deal. The weather was perfect, so the doors were wide open to the grounds and guests checked out the pool and garden with its Brad Oldham statuary.

In meantime, Faye sat at a table in the living room greeting guests. It wasn’t that Faye expected folks to come to her. The petite philanthropist was still unable to hop around due to her recent leg injury. She’s basically out of the wheelchair action and was now weaning herself off the walker.

As for Faye’s two kittens, they decided to seek their favorite hideaways. Way too many two-legged critters trolling around. However, any animal lover… and the place was full of ‘em…could get a gander of them in the life-size portrait of Faye with her cats in the living room.

Calvin Frank and Dee Simmons

Calvin Frank and Dee Simmons

Alison Hunsicker and Anne Stodghill

Alison Hunsicker and Anne Stodghill

In the crowd were Dee Simmons with Calvin Frank,  SPCA’s James Bias, Holly Forsythe, Alison Hunsicker and Anne Stodghill just back from Austin. She had been with the rest of the John Wayne clan for a ceremony making the Duke an honorary Texan on the anniversary of his 100th birthday.

Another subject topping conversations: the previous events leading up to the June 14th Paws Cause at the Jan Rees-Jones Animal Center. For instance, there had been the kick-off party at Shane Walker’s and the Jimmy Choo reception, where Leslie Eastwood brought along her Chihuahua Prada Sparkles and Annette Crow was joined by her Doodle named Bailey.

Phyllis Comu

Phyllis Comu

Paws Cause Chair Phyllis Comu has arranged for this year’s fundraiser, which is the 20th anniversary, to have past gala chairs and honorary chairs serve as honorary chairs, including: Jane Arrington, Rebecca and Jim Belew, Diane and Hal Brierley, Andie Comini, Terry Cook and Steve Yevich, Wynne McNabb Cunningham, Cassie Evans Decker, Barbara and Steve Durham, Gwen Echols, Holly Forsythe, Janelle and Larry Friedman, Gemma Galeoto, Brenda Gray, Claire Heymann, Hillary Hurst, Susan Jones, Whitney Keltch, Stacey and Don Kivowitz, Lynn Knox, Ann Marcus, T. Boone Pickens, Madeleine Pickens, the late Sarah Potter, Martha and Larry Powell, Melinda and William Rathke, Gigi and Roy Salley, Mary Spencer, Mary and Skip Trimble, Karen Urie, Karol Wilson and Cheryl Wyly.

Funds raised through the Paws Cause events will benefit the SPCA of Texas’ Mary Spencer Spay/Neuter and Wellness Clinic at Village Fair.

Round Robin April 16: Equest Fashion Show Announcement, AWARE Reception And Paws Cause Kick-Off Party

The bubble was bubbling Thursday, April 16. “Close family and friends” and big-buck donors were hunkering down at a tented dinner to celebrate the Meadows Museum’s 50th anniversary. That had the fine set dashing in and out of other fundraisers like:

Women’s Auxiliary of Equest Fashion Show Announcement

Helen McGraw and Emilynn Wilson

Helen McGraw and Emilynn Wilson

Emilynn Wilson had beau coups of announcements for the Women’s Auxiliary of Equest fall fashion show. Luckily she made the news at Carolina Herrera in HP Village. Don’t you know it was a showplace of OMG fashions with spring colors that could have held its own with the Arboretum.

For even vet Herrera types, the bridal shop still amazes with all the white gowns that make wedding bliss perfect.

But back to the Equest news of the day. Plans call for the annual fashion show to take place at Brook Hollow and the theme would be Caring Hands. Emilynn even had the logo despite the designer, Di Johnston’s daughter, was MIA due to be under the weather.

Carol Huckin and Carolyn Lupton

Carol Huckin and Carolyn Lupton

Then Emilynn revealed that the honorary chair would be longtime philanthropist Carolyn Lupton.

At this point Women’s Auxiliary founder Louise Griffeth told the crowd that both Carolyn and her daughter Carol Huckin had been dedicated and under-the-radar supporters of Equest for ages.

Louise Griffeth and Tricia George

Louise Griffeth and Tricia George

Emilynn’s final announcement was that the Equest Award for Community Service would be presented to Helen McGraw. Past award recipients have included Louise (2000), Sandra Cude (2001), Pamela Dealey Petty (2002), Carol Huckin (2003), Linda Secrest (2004), Lydia Haggar Novakov (2006), Dian Moore (2007), Linda Perryman Evans (2008) Dee Wyly and Emily Wyly (2009), Mar Nell Bell, Connie Hardin and Patti Brown (2010), Jan Myers (2011), Karen Shuttee (2012), Nancy Carter (2013) and Debbie Oates (2014).

Besides announcements, there was a slight collision of fashion. Louise Griffeth and Tricia George arrived in the different outfits but the same print. Thank heaven, they accessorized differently.

AWARE Reception

Ralph Lauren fashions

Ralph Lauren fashions

Less than a block away and an hour later, Town & Country filled the Ralph Lauren store with a jam-crammed party benefiting AWARE.

Co-Hostess Lynn McBee did a quick change from her outfit worn at the Equest announce party. She was on her way to the Meadows Gala with husband Allan McBee outside in the car with the engine running. Despite surviving on two hours of sleep, she looked wide-eyed and ready-to-go.

Stephanie Bray, Debbie Wilson, Mersina Stubbs and Lynn McBee

Stephanie Bray, Debbie Wilson, Mersina Stubbs and Lynn McBee

Another co-hostess, Mersina Stubbs, was still raving about Katherine and Bob Penn’s house where the Under the Moonlight patron party had been held the night before.

One round-the-bout vet complained upon hearing about the Penn home, “Gee, why haven’t I seen it?”

Paul Divis and Christie Carter

Paul Divis and Christie Carter

Billie Leigh Rippey and Tricia Besing

Billie Leigh Rippey and Tricia Besing

Others supporting AWARE and checking out the newest Ralph Lauren fashions was Ramona Jones talking about the Vonlane luxury busline, Paul Divis waiting for wife Tiffany and heading to another event, Christie Carter in a darling white leather jacket , mom Billie Leigh Rippey and Tricia Besing being greeted by old friends and fellow co-hostesses Stephanie Bray and Debbie Wilson being photographed.

Paws Cause Kick-Off

Just down the road on Cedar Springs, the Paws Cause humans and critters got together to kick off plans for the upcoming fundraiser for SPCA of Texas’ Mary Spencer Spay/Neuter and Wellness Clinic at Village Fair. Here’s a report from the field:

Amid stunning artwork, glittering jewelry, fabulous hats, over-the-top perfect gifts and one-of-a-kind décor pieces, the SPCA of Texas held a kick-off party for Paws Cause 2015 at Flower Reign by Shane Walker. A delightful array of delectable hors d’oeuvres and champagne refreshed attendees, a photo booth captured the evening’s fun for the guests to share and a highly talented caricature artist sketched guests with whimsy and just a little bit of cheeky playfulness.

Flower Reign donated 20% of the purchase price of all products purchased that night. Special thanks to Flower Reign by Shane Walker for hosting the party, to Kristen & Scott Greenberg for providing the beverages and to Food Glorious Food for providing the delicious hors d’oeuvres.

This year, Paws Cause is celebrating its 20th anniversary of supporting the SPCA of Texas’ Mary Spencer Spay/Neuter and Wellness Clinic at Village Fair in South Dallas, where spay/neuter surgeries and wellness care are provided in high-need neighborhoods to help moderate the stray animal population. Each year, the Mary Spencer Clinic performs more than 11,000 low cost spay/neuter surgeries and your generosity allows us to continue positively affecting families and their furry companions.

Paws Cause 2015 is shaping up to be most successful, thanks to Event Chair Phyllis Comu. To celebrate its 20th year, Paws Cause is inviting all past honorary chairs to again be honorary chairs.

The honorary chairs include Jane Arrington, Rebecca and Jim Belew, Diane and Hal Brierley, Andie Comini, Terry Cook and Steve Yevich, Wynne McNabb Cunningham, Barbara and Steve Durham, Holly Forsythe, Gwen Echols, Cassie Evans Decker, Janelle and Larry Friedman, Gemma Galeoto, Brenda Gray, Hillary Hurst, Susan Jones, Whitney Keltch, Stacey and Don Kivowitz, Lynn Knox, Ann Marcus, T. Boone Pickens, Madeleine Pickens, Martha and Larry Powell, Gigi and Roy Salley, Sarah Potter, Melinda and William Rathke, Mary Spencer, Mary and Skip Tremble, Karen Urie, Karol Wilson and Cheryl Wyly.

Paws Cause 2015 will be held on Saturday, June 14 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the SPCA of Texas’ Jan Rees-Jones Animal Care Center, a state-of-the-art animal shelter facility in the heart of West Dallas. The summer cocktail-themed evening will feature catering by Food Glorious Food, musical entertainment by The British Are Coming, a silent auction, the famous “Bone Appetit” restaurant drawing, and more. For more information, please visit pawscausedallas.org.

MySweetWishList: Jocelyn White

According to animal- and environment-loving Jocelyn White,

Jocelyn White (File Photo)

Jocelyn White (File Photo)

“As chairman of the board of SPCA of Texas, my wish is that all rescue groups and shelters and citizens will join us in our Mission: To provide every animal with exceptional care and a loving home. It is our responsibility as human beings to recognize their intelligence and emotions and care for them. They depend on us! And the SPCA of Texas depends totally on donations, receiving no funds from the City or ASPCA, which is based in New York City.

“And, as chairman of the Board of Equest, my hope is that in the coming year as we begin our services for South Dallas individuals at The Texas Horse Park and continue our work expanding our Wylie facility into our new Rockwall property, that more people will support our work. Equest provides equine-assisted therapy for those with physical, mental, and emotional disabilities.  This includes people with Autism, Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy as well as veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress.

“These are worthy charities which depend entirely on local donations to achieve the above goals. And both can always use volunteers.

“And, finally, as a director of The Dallas Arboretum, people looking for a happy place need look no further than The Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. It is one of the true treasures of the City of Dallas.”

-Jocelyn White, animal- and environment-lover

MySweetWishList: SPCA Of Texas

According to SPCA of Texas Communications Specialist Stephanie Knight,

Stephanie Knight and Optimus*

Stephanie Knight and Optimus*

“Homeless animals across North Texas would love nothing more than a loving forever home for the holidays. The SPCA of Texas currently has over 150 animals waiting for that very Christmas wish to come true. What better way to spend the holidays than with a new, furry four-legged family member?

“Each animal is happy, healthy and ready to cuddle with their new family throughout the holiday season. Families looking to help the SPCA of Texas, but aren’t ready to adopt can always help provide our animals with the care that they need by donating online at spca.org or even donating items like blankets and toys directly to our shelter. Thank you for helping homeless animals in North Texas find loving homes for the holidays.”

-Stephanie Knight, SPCA of Texas Communications Specialist

* Photo provided by SPCA of Texas

Fur Ball Celebrated “Mission: PASSible” With A Daisy, A Holly And A Lot Of Two-Legged Critters In Fancy Duds

Suzanne Humann, Amy Darrow, Jan Rees-Jones, Toni Shepard, Sue Muller and Valerie Jones*

Suzanne Humann, Amy Darrow, Jan Rees-Jones, Toni Shepard, Sue Muller and Valerie Jones*

Over at the Omni Dallas Hotel on Saturday, September 20,  folks like Jan Miller and Jeff Rich, Holly and Stubbs Davis, Jan Rees-Jones, and Stacey and Don Kivowitz wore their finest fabrics (no fur, leathers or feathers for this group) for Mission: Pawssible, the 2014 Fur Ball fundraiser for the SPCA of Texas. The fifth annual event featured a silent and live auction, a scrumptious dinner (radicchio bowl and mixed greens, beef short rib and grilled gulf shrimp, chocolate pot du crème), music by the Think Big Party Band, casino gaming and videos starring four-legged critters.

Here is a more detailed report from the field:

Jocelyn White*

Jocelyn White*

“The SPCA of Texas gave more than 650 guests a mission that proved to be ‘PAWSsible’ at this year’s Fur Ball. The evening kicked off with Master of Ceremonies and SPCA of Texas Board Chair Jocelyn White searching for SPCA of Texas president James Bias. Special Agent Daisy the German Shepherd sent Agent-in-Training Jasper the German Shepherd puppy on assignment to get the secret to the SPCA of Texas’ success to James Bias. That secret? The SPCA of Texas’ wonderful supporters!

Kit Moncrief and Russell Dealey*

Kit Moncrief and Russell Dealey*

“Long-time, dedicated friends and supporters, Russell Dealey and Kit Moncrief, were this year’s honorary chairs.

Kelly Thompson, James Bias and Katy Murray*

Kelly Thompson, James Bias and Katy Murray*

“This high-rolling event would not have been possible without enthusiastic and compassionate co-chairs, Katy Murray and Kelly Thompson, whose devotion to animals is undeniable. All proceeds from this year’s Fur Ball, nearly $450,000, will help the SPCA of Texas, the leading animal welfare agency in North Texas, continue to rescue, heal and find homes for thousands of animals in the coming year.

“The SPCA of Texas also presented the 2014 Spencer Humanitarian Award. Named for warm-hearted entrepreneur and animal advocate Mary Spencer, the Spencer Humanitarian Awards recognize an individual, company or group whose extraordinary efforts have made a positive difference for animals. The 2014 recipient of the Spencer Humanitarian Award has made a huge impact in the lives of animals in North Texas, Holly Forsythe.

Holly Forsythe and Terri Phillips*

Holly Forsythe and Terri Phillips*

“The evening was complete with a lavish, seated dinner, decadent cocktails, stunning floral arrangements and a bevy of casino tables where guests could cash in for critters. The SPCA of Texas also featured a heartwarming video that showed a special four-legged alumnus, Bailey before she was rescued from inhumane conditions. In fact, Bailey and her entire family got on stage to show off how incredible Bailey looks today.

“Everyone was dressed in their best agent gear, and really got down to the funky beats of Think Big Party Band.

“Sincere thanks to the event’s special partners, including:

  • “Platinum Level sponsors — Russell E. Dealey and Jan Rees-Jones;
  • “Gold Level sponsors — Stacey and Don Kivowitz, Katy Murray, Stacy Searcy, Kelly and Craig Thompson and Jocelyn White and Kim Seal;
  • “Silver Level sponsors — Diane and Hal Brierley, Gwen and Leldon Echols, Hill’s Science Diet, Tanya Roberts, Claire Schwarz and Mary Spencer and VCA Animal Hospitals; and
  • “Bronze Level sponsors — Linda and Ozzie Chapa, Holly Forsythe, Marsha Pendleton-Gray and Richard Gray, Highland Park Animal Hospital, Hallett and Perrin, PC, Katy Trail Animal Hospital and Krista Tankersley.

“The SPCA of Texas would like to thank everyone who made this night possible for all the special animals at the SPCA of Texas.”

* Photo credit: Steve Foxall

September 4 Round Robin: Fur Ball Kick-Off Party, CCB Platinum Circle Dinner And The Warren Center’s Fantasy Football Draft Night

Ah, sugar! If Wednesday, September 3, seemed like an asteroid hit, Thursday was a universal smash. Yup, the Partners Card North launch was filling IBB Design in frisky Frisco. Other hits in the North Texas universe were taking place just a bit south of G. Bush and LBJ.

Fur Ball Kick-Off Party

SPCA Kissing Kid and Kelly Thompson

SPCA Kissing Kid and Kelly Thompson

Cool artist Chris Martin opened his Dragon Street Gallery for the kick-off of the 2014 Fur Ball Gala on Saturday, September 20, at the Omni. And while the two-legged pretties were checking out the walls of art, the evening’s real eye catchers were either on the floor in a playpen or snuggling up. They were the licking, wagging puppies who are not up for adoption … yet. They’re still in the foster stage of life. But that will be ending soon, so they’ll be interviewing prospective humans for a lifetime relationship.

And speaking of furry relationships, word was making the rounds that Jocelyn White, who is finishing up her term as SPCA of Texas board of directors chair, will be taking the reins of Equest in a couple of months.

Katy Murray  and James Bias

Katy Murray and James Bias

As for the black-tie Fur Ball benefiting the SPCA of Texas, Gala Co-Chairs Katy Murray and Kelly Thompson, Honorary Co-Chairs Rusty Dealey and Kit Moncrief, Underwriting Co-Chairs Cindy Lindsley and Claire Schwartz and Auction Co-Chair Nicole Rosenblum have arranged for Allison and Mike Modano to be Athlete for Animal Honorary Co-Chairs and Stacie and Chris Martin to be Artist for Animal Honorary Co-Chairs.

Travis and Morgan Souza

Travis and Morgan Souza

They’re expecting 1,000 animal lovers with proceeds of the evening benefiting the SPCA of Texas.

Crystal Charity Ball 10 Best Dressed Platinum Circle Dinner

One valet parker smiled when asked about the crowd gathering at the Dallas Country Club. He summed up the scene, “This is a high-roller group.”

The gent evidently graduated from the “School of Understatement.”

Sponsored by Comerica Bank, this year’s Platinum Circle Dinner for the patron of the Crystal Charity Ball’s 10 Best Dressed Luncheon had the very fashionable set filling the lobby for the cocktail reception, where the game of catch-up was nonstop. Summer casualties Claire Emanuelson and Erin Mathews had let their casts have the night off. When will Louboutin design a fashionable cast? Seems Claire had broken her ankle in Canada and Erin had been the victim of a puppy-gate topple…Emilynn Wilson revealed that she had accepted the job of chairing the 2015 Equest Luncheon…Speaking of Claire, she also had a fashion oops earlier in the day. Seems the lower back of her lacy cocktail dress had hit a snag, but thanks to a talented Korshak seamstress the tear was sewn up without Claire’s having to take the dress off… Newlyweds Ceron and Todd Fiscus were still receiving congratulations on their New Year’s nuptials.

Shelby Wagner, Piper Wyatt and Claire Emanuelson

Shelby Wagner, Piper Wyatt and Claire Emanuelson

Lisa Troutt

Lisa Troutt

When the doors opened to the ballroom, tables were filled with folks like David Blank, Shelby Wagner, Piper Wyatt, Kim and Greg Miller, Lisa and Kenny Troutt, Elaine and Neils Agather, Colleen Collins, Shelle Sills, Nancy Carter, Beth Layton, Vicky Lattner, Lauren Gayle White, Tiffany and Paul Divis, Barbara Daseke, Laree Hulshoff, the Downtown Neiman’s crowd (Jeff Byron, Neva Hall and Marjohn Henderson) and former CCB Chairs Caren Kline, Cynthia Mitchell and Aileen Pratt.

D'Andra and Jeremy Lock

D’Andra and Jeremy Lock

Jeri and David Kleiman

Jeri and David Kleiman

The game of catch-up continued tableside with Jeremy Lock showing photos from Burning Man and preparing for September 27th Mission Ole that wife D’Andra is co-chairing with LeeAnne LockenIain Day was telling David Kleiman and Macolm Reuben about his summer playing polo in South Africa…Alan White, who just thought he had done his time a couple of years ago as 10 Best Dressed husband-in-waiting, looked rather pleased to be back on the scene with table companions Nancy Dedman, Annette Simmons and Barbara BabbLee Bailey was back in town after doing the Bentley tour of California…To the relief of many fundraising vets, Comerica Bank’s Ralph Babb once again proved to be eloquent and brief in his remarks. The man knows how to win the hearts of hungry guests.

Jeff Byron and Barbara and Ralph Babb

Jeff Byron and Barbara and Ralph Babb

Unplanned entertainment at the tables proved to be the servers trying to coax the ranch and balsamic vinaigrette dressings out of their white serving bottles. The ranch proved to the more stubborn of the two as one server shook and shook to get it onto Dallas Country Club garden salad of lettuce du with carrots, tomatoes and cucumbers. Imagine trying to get the last part of ketchup out of its bottle.

Front row: Francie Moody -Dahlberg, DeeDee Lee, Mary Clare Finney, Lee Ann White, Heahter Esping and Ashley Hunt; Back row: Pat McEvoy, Christi Urschel, Ralph Babb, Patty Leyendecker, Lynn McBee and Robyn Conlon

Front row: Francie Moody -Dahlberg, DeeDee Lee, Mary Clare Finney, Lee Ann White, Heahter Esping and Ashley Hunt; Back row: Pat McEvoy, Christi Urschel, Ralph Babb, Patty Leyendecker, Lynn McBee and Robyn Conlon

When time came to have the 2014 10 Best Dressed and Hall of Famer class photo taken, two were missing — Nancy Carlson and Margaret Hancock. Not to worry; the others (Heather Esping, Mary Clare Finney, Ashley Hunt, DeeDee Lee, Patty Leyendecker, Lynn McBee, Francie Moody-Dahlberg, Christi Urschel and HoF-er Lee Ann White) made up for the missing with a little stand-in help from former Best Dressers 2014 CCB Chair Robyn Conlon and 10 Best Dressed Chair Pat McEvoy.

For more photos of the dinner, check out MySweetCharity Photo Gallery.

 

The Warren Center Fantasy Football Draft Night

DFW football fans were at AT&T Stadium for The Warren’s Center’s 21st Annual Fantasy Football Draft Night. Here’s a report from the field:

The Warren Center Fantasy Football Draft Committee*

The Warren Center Fantasy Football Draft Committee*

“With the blazing September heat, AT&T Stadium (or Gate 10) was hit with scorching rays and warm temperatures to begin the cocktail hour and silent auction preview. As the sun went down, former Cowboys player Randy White, with Emcee Scott Murray began the night with banter between the two men about what Randy has been up to. ‘Not working out as much and feeding my horses during the day and night,’ Randy says.

Beverly Warren, Todd and Michelle Steudtner, Randy White and Bill Warren*

Beverly Warren, Todd and Michelle Steudtner, Randy White and Bill Warren*

“With Chairmen Michelle and Todd Steudtner and hosts Beverly and Bill Warren, guests were treated to cocktail hour hosted by Forge, Mexican buffet dinner, silent auction featuring 15 Minutes of Fame with behind-the-scenes tour with Pete Delkus and a watch-a-live broadcast, live auction featuring an evening with Randy hosted by Carrie and Jim Benson, wine pull hosted by Fuzi Fine Wines, live surprises featuring $50 surprise boxes with two lucky winners receiving $500 Amazon Gift cards and Heads-or-Tails Game hosted by Randy. For $20, guests placed their hands on their head or tail with one lucky winner receiving $500 cash and saving the best for last — a photo opportunity with Randy and former Yankees and Texas Rangers player Goose Gossage who attended the event.

Goose Gossage, Scott Murray and Randy White*

Goose Gossage, Scott Murray and Randy White*

“With all the action, participants were given the final straw of the night by drafting their own Fantasy Football team. Each table or league will the opportunity to compete throughout the 2014-2015 NFL Season. The Super Bowl Champion of Fantasy Football XXI winner receives two season ticket packages to the 2015 Dallas Cowboys season. Winners of each league receive an autographed football signed by Randy.

“Seen in the crowd: Erin and Rusty Kotzur, Mike Austin, Mike Andereck, John Cain, Karen and Nick Adamson, Jeanne and Charlie Jones, Ann and Bill Danridge, Carrie and Jim Benson and Sharon and Steve Folsom.”

* Photo credit: Rudi Holt

A Free Fix For Felines And Fidos

One of the stellar four-letter words is “Free”! And thanks to a grant from PetSmart Charities®, SPCA of Texas is offering an incredible freebie — “Fix ‘Em Dallas County”. Until Tuesday, September 30, free spay and neuter surgeries for Dallas Country pets will be offered at the SPCA’s Myron K. Martin Spay/Neuter & Wellness Clinic, Mary Spencer Spay/Neuter & Wellness Clinic at Village Fair and Russell H. Perry Spay/Neuter & Wellness Clinic.

All that is required is proof of up-to-date vaccinations and a critter in need of fixing. BTW, the SPCA also offers low-cost vaccinations, if yours isn’t up-to-date.

Feral cats

Feral cats

Remember the best way to eliminate the annual euthanasia of thousands of “unwanted” dogs and cats is to prevent their births. So, just call 214.742.7722 to make an appointment.