When Winter Ball chairs Elizabeth Stein and Patti Murphy selected "A Night on the Nile" as the theme of the annual Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America gala, they could hardly have anticipated the rave reviews of the visually stunning evening.
Their phones and emails were busy, busy on Sunday as praise poured in for the evening that transformed the ballroom of the Hilton Americas-Houston into a time travel sensation. Bare-chested pharaoh's guards welcomed guests while richly-costumed Anthony and Cleopatra romped through the black-tie crowd of 650 and a snake charmer tested the bravery of guests who might be willing to handle the reptile.
The 2015 KTRK Channel 13 Women of Distinction were presented against a backdrop of massive videos and images from Egypt, first camels strolling past the pyramids, boats on the Nile and antiquities. Kudos to ArtAttack and Password Productions for executing the brilliant decor.
A dozen women were honored on this night including Queen of the Nile Pat Breen and 2015 Ambassador Trini Mendenhall. The 2015 class of Women of Distinction were Carol Beck, Suzan Deison, Lesha Elsenbrook, Gayla Gardner, Carol Linn, Kim Moody, Leisa Holland-Nelson, Susan Osterberg, Cynthia Petrello and Roberta Schwartz.
Also taking bows in the spotlight and strolling the catwalk were more than 50 leading ladies, who were previously honored as Women of Distinction during the Winter Ball's 27-year history.
Terrie and Mike Turner served as honorary chairs of the gala that raised close to $900,000, a record for the event. Adding to the bottom line was the auction of the 2015 Mercedes-Benz CLS 550 sedan, donated by Mercedes-Benz Dealers of Greater Houston, a necklace and earring set created by Franco Valobra and the Lucky Key draw that opened King Tut's Treasure for a $15,000 gift certificate to Tenenbaum & Co.
Celebrating with the Women of Distinction were Don Murphy, Alan Stein, Linda and Jerry Fields, Tony Bradfield and Kevin Black, Nancy and Jack Dinerstein, Kristina and Paul Somerville, Cora Sue and Harry Mach, Claudia and Jan Rask and Janet and Tom Behanick.