Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Global Down Syndrome Foundation's Gala - "Be Beautiful, Be Yourself"

From MarketWatch:

The Global Down Syndrome Foundation announced that Gladys Knight, the Empress of Soul will perform live at its inaugural Washington, D.C. Gala - Be Beautiful, Be Yourself.

Washington's most powerful and influential leaders and professional athletes will gather to support Down syndrome research and advocacy on Wed., Nov. 16, 2011, at the J.W. Marriott in Washington, D.C.

The Foundation will honor Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) & Rep. Pete Sessions (R-Texas), two Congressional champions for the cause, with the Quincy Jones Exceptional Advocacy Award for their strong support and advocacy for the rights of people with disabilities. More than 600 friends of the Foundation are expected to attend, including national and local celebrities, congressional leaders, administration officials, ambassadors from around the world, members of the media, and senior corporate and association executives who share a commitment to human rights, civil rights and people with Down syndrome.

The event will include cocktails, dinner and a full-scale fashion show featuring beautiful guest models with Down syndrome, escorted by celebrities and professional athletes. The evening will be capped off with music from the Empress of Soul, Gladys Knight. VIP tickets include preferred seating, a VIP reception and photo ops with celebrities including Gladys Knight. Proceeds from the evening will benefit the Linda Crnic Institute for Down Syndrome, the first academic institute with a mission to eradicate the medical and cognitive ill effects associated with the condition.

The Global Down Syndrome Foundation will be hosting auditions for guest models with Down syndrome on October 5, 2011. Auditions will be held from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the JW Marriott, 1331 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20004. For more information and to register for auditions, please contact Abby Perlmutter at or 303-468-6665.

This year marks the debut of the Global Down Syndrome Foundation Gala - Be Beautiful, Be Yourself in Washington, D.C. In its third year in Denver, Colo., the event draws 1,200 attendees and notable supporters including Quincy Jones, Jamie Foxx, Timothy P. Shriver, "Survivor" host Jeff Probst, super model Beverly Johnson, award-winning actor John C. McGinley, NBA champion and New York Nicks' Chauncey Billups, pro golfer David Duval, and NFL champions Ed McCaffrey, John Lynch, Brian Griese, and John Elway.

The 2011 Ambassador for the Washington, D.C. event is Alex Sessions, the son of Rep. Sessions, who is a 17-year-old self advocate and a third generation Eagle Scout. He has won Special Olympic medals in swimming, basketball and track. His family will be attending and are important supporters and advocates of the Global Down Syndrome Foundation.

Established in 2009, the Global Down Syndrome Foundation's primary focus is to support the Linda Crnic Institute for Down Syndrome. The Crnic Institute is the first organization in the United States with the mission to eradicate the medical and cognitive ill effects associated with Down syndrome through basic and clinical research and through clinical care. The Crnic Institute incorporates scientific partners both locally and globally, with headquarters at the Anschutz Medical Campus in Colorado.

Sponsorship packages are available starting at $5,000. For ticket information, please contact Katie Maness at 703-288-8695 or To learn more about the Global Down Syndrome Foundation, please visit us at .

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