Could there be a more noble cause than aiding children who are neglected and abused? When the call came to support Justice for Children at its eighth annual fundraiser, supporters turned out in record numbers and raised the most funds ever for the non-profit that provides a safety net of legal support, guidance and monitoring for children needing help.
Laura and Lee Slataper chaired the Mardi Gras-themed fundraiser at Hotel ZaZa where beneath the frivolity there was a serious mission.
With KPRC chief meteorologist Frank Billingsley serving as emcee, the evening honored several Houstonians who have made a difference in the community. Carolyn Farb was honored with the Harvey Houck Jr. Award, recognized for her lifelong commitment to and philanthropy for charities which focus on the welfare of children.
The award was named in honor of the late Harvey Houck Jr., who was one of Justice for Children's most ardent supporters for 24 years until his passing away last year. Rosemary Malone Houck, expressed the family's appreciation for the award being named in her late husband's honor.
Terri Langford received the 2011 Justice for Children Media Award for her body of work in the Houston Chronicle reporting on child abuse issues. KHOU newsman Jeremy Rogalski presented the award.
In thanking guests, Justice for Children executive director Steven Lightfoot said, “The Gala raised over $105,000. It is our primary fundraising event of the year, and is key to our ability to continue to provide our services at no cost to the children caught up in the system due to no fault of their own."
Once the serious business was put aside, guests donned Mardi Gras beads, had dinner and danced to the sounds of Sparky's Jazz Express. In the mix were Margaret Alkek Williams with Jim Daniel, Margaret Smith, Nick Bednorz, Hanna Storm, Bill Kreps, Sarah and Mark Benson, Deborah Colton, Dr. Connie Charalampous, Anthony Kouzounis, Judge Jan Krocker, Judge D'Lisa Simmons and Michael Barnes.