Surviving and thriving after open heart surgery, Star Jones felt that she was called to take up the banner in the fight against heart disease, the No. 1 killer of American men and women. So it was that she served as keynote speaker at the American Heart Association's annual "Go Red for Women" luncheon at Hotel ZaZa.
As the former member of The View team likes to say, "With my recovery, I realized I had an obligation that reached beyond my own health. I made a commitment to use whatever platform I have in the public eye to raise awareness of heart disease in women." Her message encouraged all in the sellout gathering to take control of their heart health.
Thanks to the efforts of luncheon chair Laura Davenport, campaign chair Dr. Julia Andrieni and Open Your Heart chair Rishma Mohamed the luncheon raised a record $700,000.
The successful fundraiser held a special surprise for KTRK Channel 13 news anchor Gina Gaston, who was honored by AHA and the Houston Go Red for Women team for her decade of serving as event emcee. The program included a testimonial on the miracles of cardiology by Mindy Raggio and her young daughter Hope.
Among those thinking heart health were Heart Guild president Ilene Allen, Lesha Elsenbrook, Roz Pactor, Gillian Alexander, Winell Herron, Dr. Daniel Penny, Nadine Boutros, Beth Wolff, Shauna Clark, Ayse McCracken, Dr. Aldona Spiegal and Christina Ibrahim.