NYU Child Study Center raises $4 million at eighth annual child advocacy award dinner


Dinner honored Bob and Suzanne Wright, co-founders of Autism Speaks

December 1, 2005 (New York, New York) On Tuesday, November 29, 2005, the NYU Child Study Center hosted its eighth annual award dinner at Cipriani 42nd Street, raising $4 million to support the programs and initiatives of the Center. Chaired by Lori and George Hall, this year's dinner highlighted the Center's vision for changing the existing child mental health paradigm by developing more effective and efficient ways to prevent, identify and treat mental illness. The dinner honored Autism Speaks Co-Founders, Suzanne and Bob Wright. Bob Wright is vice chairman and executive officer of General Electric and chairman and chief executive officer of NBC Universal. "Andrew's Story" a film of a 15-year-old boy with Autism produced exclusively for the Child Study Center by Nathaniel Kahn, Oscar-nominated director of My Architect, was screened. The table centerpieces were designed and donated by artist Richard Tuttle, furthering his vision of art crossing over into life.

"Science is our only answer for determining what causes Autism and for developing more effective treatments and preventions for this devastating illness," said Dr. Harold S. Koplewicz, founder and director of the NYU Child Study Center. "We honor Suzanne and Bob Wright for taking the personal tragedy of their grandson's diagnosis of Autism and giving voice to those who can't speak."

Because of medical research, a substantial portion of children with Autism are now much more able to engage and relate to others and to their world. Some do move into productive lives in rewarding ways, but they still struggle. Fortunately, the range of potential outcomes is much broader than was true in the past. But for the majority of these children their lives are limited socially, professionally and intellectually.

Guests at this year's dinner included Al Roker; Matt Lauer; Ann Curry; Stone Phillips; Campbell Brown; Diane Neal; B.D. Wong; Dylan Baker; Nathaniel Kahn, Oscar-nominated director of My Architect; Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg; The Honorable Jon S. Corzine; Dr. Ruth Westheimer; Brooke and Daniel Neidich; Arthur and Linda Carter; Alice and Thomas Tisch; Ann Tenenbaum and Tom Lee; Claude Wasserstein; Klara and Larry Silverstein; Patricia Warburg Cliff and Karl von Frieling; Michael Gould, chairman and chief executive officer, Bloomingdale's; Dr. Gail Saltz; Erica Jong and Kenneth Burrows; Martin Lipton; Ken and Elaine Langone; and Heather and Steven Mnuchin.

Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Inc. was the evening's corporate sponsor. Other supporters of this year's dinner include Beth Rudin DeWoody; Millard Drexler, chairman and chief executive officer, J. Crew & Co; Laura and Robert Sillerman; and Katherine and Jerry Speyer, chairman, president and chief executive officer, Tishman Speyer.

The Child Advocacy Award Dinner celebrates the Child Study Center's commitment to its mission: to apply the best of science and medicine to the problem of mental illness in children. Past honorees include: Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg; First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton; Mayor Rudolph Giuliani; Tipper Gore; Governor George E. Pataki; Whoopi Goldberg; Senator Jon S. Corzine and Joanne Corzine; Surgeon General David Satcher, M.D. Ph.D.; Lawrence Summers, President of Harvard University; and Leonard N. Stern.

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