As Men of Distinction gears up for its 10th anniversary luncheon, the gents began the celebration of a decade of raising funds for medical research with a lavish buffet dinner in the extraordinary Memorial area home of Sue and Lester Smith.
Lester was an honoree in 2007 in the inaugural Men of Distinction class. So for this milestone, the Smiths pulled out the stops. Guests gathered for cocktails in the expansive foyer lighted from above by a massive Chihuly sculpture. The Smiths brought in Culinaire to orchestrate an inspired menu for the 150 guests who would settle down for dinner in the second floor ballroom. With crystal chandeliers overhead and the dance floor surrounded by faux marble Corinthian columns, the tables were magnificently set with fine china, sterling flatware and dazzling crystal stemware. Wine and champagne flowed.
The elaborate evening served to celebrate the 2016 honorees — Harry Cullen, Gerald Hines and Dr. Mark Kline — and to introduce the 2016 medical recipients. Since its inception, the annual luncheon has raised more than $3 million for medical initiatives in the Texas Medical Center with an emphasis on funding pediatric research. This year the monies will be divided between Jared Howell, director of orthotics and prosthetics at Baylor College of Medicine; Dr. Carolyn Cannon of Texas A&M Health Science Center and Texas Children's Hospital; and Dr. Joseph Alcorn of Children's Memorial Hermann and UTHealth.
The 10th anniversary luncheon, chaired by Ric Campo and David Solomon, is set for May 25 at River Oaks Country Club. David Wuthrich serves as steering committee chairman.
The dinner group included some of the city's leading philanthropists and community leaders including Rose Cullen, Jeri and Marc Shapiro, Emily and Holcombe Crosswell, Harry Mach, Merrill and Joe Hafner, Paul Murphy, Margaret Alkek Williams, Don Jordan, Ed McMahon, Tara Wuthrich, Jess Tutor, Lisa Kennedy, and Jane Block.