Judy Woodruff, Sally Quinn, and David Ignatius. Photo © Tony Powell
On Wednesday, April 26, the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF), the only charity focused solely on finding new drugs for Alzheimer’s, raised over $350,000 for life-saving research at our Seventh Annual Great Ladies Luncheon & Fashion Show at the Ritz-Carlton Washington, D.C.
The lively afternoon was hosted by PBS NewsHour anchor Judy Woodruff. Author and Washington Post columnist David Ignatius presented the 2017 Great Ladies Award to his good friend Sally Quinn in recognition of her work in the fight against Alzheimer’s. Ms. Quinn moved many in the audience to tears when she spoke of the years she spent caring for her husband, Ben Bradlee, who died of complications from Alzheimer’s disease.
The event had a distinctly Italian flare, with Honorary Chairs the Ambassador of Italy Armando Varricchio and Micaela Barbagallo in attendance. The nearly 500 guests enjoyed a rustic Italian lunch and a rare runway show by designer Brunello Cucinelli, presented by event partner Neiman Marcus Mazza Gallerie.
The luxury fashion house also donated an exclusive trip to its headquarters in Solomeo, Italy, for a benefit auction. The auction accompanied a door prize drawing with an array of enticing prizes. Every dollar raised at the Great Ladies Luncheon supports drug research programs for Alzheimer’s.
The event began with “The Symposium to Conquer Alzheimer’s,” introduced by NBC News anchor and Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent Andrea Mitchell. The ADDF’s Dr. Howard Fillit led a riveting discussion with Georgetown Professor R. Scott Turner, Dr. Michela Gallagher of Johns Hopkins, and Dr. Diana Shineman, also of the ADDF, about the latest advancements in prevention and treatment of Alzheimer’s.
The Great Ladies Luncheon was made possible by Founding Executive Chair Elise and Marc Lefkowitz, Leonard A. Lauder, and Ronald S. Lauder.
In attendance were Executive Chairs Pennie Abramson, Faith Bobrow, Julie C. Opperman, and Thomas Pheasant; Ladies Benefit Committee Co-Chairs Shelley Banks, Nancy Taylor Bubes, Andrea Mitchell, Kelly Ripken and Patricia Bennett Sagon; Committee Members Amy Baier, Wilma Bernstein, Alexandra de Borchgrave, Sharon Collins Casey, Kristin Cecchi, Meryl Comer, David Deckelbaum, Alma Gildenhorn, Nancy Goodes, Cindy Jones, Laurie Monahan, JoAnn Mason, Toni Verstandig, Lorraine Wallace, and Carol Gildenhorn Winer; and guests Lynn Blitzer, Sharon Bradley, Louann Deckelbaum, Amra Fazlic, Jean-Marie Fernandez, Mae Haney Grennan, Al Hunt, and Baroness Alexandra Sényi.