Mother Day Soiree

International Soiree celebrates 5th anniversary with Bollywood glamour and dazzling gowns

International Soiree celebrates with Bollywood glamour, dazzling gowns

Shawntell McWilliams, Ruchi Mukherjee at International Mother's Day Soiree
Shawntell McWilliams, Ruchi Mukherjee. Photo by Sonya Abid
Sippi Khurana, Andy Cerota at International Mothers Day Soiree
Dr. Sippi Khurana and KPRC's Andy Cerota served as  hosts. Photo by Sonya Abid
Sharan Gahunia at International Mothers Day Soiree
Sharan Gahuina. Photo by Sonya Abid
Y. Ping Sun at International Mother's Day Soiree
Honoree Y. Ping Sun. Photo by Sonya Abid
Monjula Chidambaram, Mehrnaz Gill, Donatella Benckenstein at International Mother's Day Soiree
Monjula Chidambaram, Mehrnaz Gill, Donatella Benckenstein. Photo by Sonya Abid
Rekha Muddaraj, Laxmi and Lara at International Mothers Day Soiree
Rehka Muddaraj, center, with Laxmi and Lara. Photo by Sonya Abid
Sunrise International Dance Company Dancer at International Mothers Day Soiree
Dancer from the Sunrise International Dance Company, which entertained the crowd. Photo by Sonya Abid
Denise O’Brian, Nicole O’Brian Lassiter at International Mothers Day Soiree
Denise O'Brian, Nicole O'Brian Lassiter. Photo by Sonya Abid
Rob Todd, Dinah Lin at International Mother's Day Soiree
Rob Todd, Dinah Lin. Photo by Sonya Abid
Toni Tate at International Mother's Day Soiree
Toni Tate. Photo by Sonya Abid
Jill Thompson Shull, Averie Shull at International Mothers Day Soiree
Jill Thompson Shull, Averie Shull. Photo by Sonya Abid
Blaine Ochoa, Hannah Johannes at International Mothers Day Soiree
Baline Ochoa and Hannah Joannes with copies of the new edition of LCA International. Photo by Sonya Abid
International Mother's Day Soiree, Rohit Vyas, Ruchi Mukherjee
Rohit Vyas, Ruchi Mukherjee. Photo by Sonya Abid
Keith McWilliams, Shawntell McWilliams at International Mother's Day Soiree Kickoff party
Keith McWilliams, Shawntell McWilliams. Photo by Sonya Abid
Shawntell McWilliams, Ruchi Mukherjee at International Mother's Day Soiree
Sippi Khurana, Andy Cerota at International Mothers Day Soiree
Sharan Gahunia at International Mothers Day Soiree
Y. Ping Sun at International Mother's Day Soiree
Monjula Chidambaram, Mehrnaz Gill, Donatella Benckenstein at International Mother's Day Soiree
Rekha Muddaraj, Laxmi and Lara at International Mothers Day Soiree
Sunrise International Dance Company Dancer at International Mothers Day Soiree
Denise O’Brian, Nicole O’Brian Lassiter at International Mothers Day Soiree
Rob Todd, Dinah Lin at International Mother's Day Soiree
Toni Tate at International Mother's Day Soiree
Jill Thompson Shull, Averie Shull at International Mothers Day Soiree
Blaine Ochoa, Hannah Johannes at International Mothers Day Soiree
International Mother's Day Soiree, Rohit Vyas, Ruchi Mukherjee
Keith McWilliams, Shawntell McWilliams at International Mother's Day Soiree Kickoff party

What:  LCA Houston International Mothers Day Soiree.

Where: Asia Society Texas Center.

The scoop: To celebrate the fifth anniversary of the gala that honors prominent philanthropic mothers of Houston, founder Ruchi Mukherjee asked guests to dress in "Bollywood chic' and many in the crowd of 250 enthusiastically complied. The evening's emcees,KPRC Channel 2 anchor/reporter Andy Cerota and Dr. Sippi Khurana, sparkled in lush Indian eveningwear. Cerota looked dashing in a dark sherwani (a long coat-like garment worn in the Indian subcontinent; this one came for Poshak Hillcroft) while Khurana exuded Bollywood glamour in a Lehenga choli (modeled after a three-piece evening outfit worn by women in ancient India).

Murkherjee wowed the crowd in a sparkling Gharara, a richly-embroidered style from Lucknow, India, where she was born. (It consists of a mid-thigh length tunic and a pair of wide-legged pants, ruched at the knee to flare out dramatically.) She accessorized the outfit with jewelry from her mother.

Other guests sparkled in colorful saris and other native gowns.

The theme extended throughout the building, with an auto-rickshaw photo space, a wall size image of the streets of Mumbai, sari-clad models and a live henna station. Guests were treated to Indian street food, including spinach and feta samosas, and other East-meets-West lite bites and drinks, courtesy of Kiran's, Raja Sweets, Ginn's Courmet, and Radio Milano.

New York-based TV Anchor Rohit Vyas flew in to present awards to honorees, including Merele Yarborough, Dr. Monira Kundi, Toni Tate, Denise O'Brian, Ishwaria Mohan Subbiah, Shabnam Shaikh, Jill Shull, Carrie Brandsberg-Dahl, Brigitte Kalai, Jane Seam, Rekha Muddaraj, and Y. Ping Sun.

Media Appreciation Awards were presented to FOX26 morning news anchor Rita Garcia and CultureMap (John Dascoulias accepted the award on behalf of the lifestyle website) and special elite sponsors: Howard Tate, Amplified Solutions founder Rob Todd, Teresa Reading, and Amerapex Corporation president and CEO Bashar Kalani

Event co-chair Shawntell McWilliams surprised Mukherjee with a certificate of special Congressional recognition from U.S Rep. Al Green for her work in social causes for women and the underprivileged.

Who: Seen in the crowd were Staci and Quan Henderson, Sobi Qazi, Ella Markovsky, Kanchan Singh, Logan Lester, Rebecca Brinkley, Sameera Faridi and Anas Ahmad, Farida Abjani, Dr. Vanitha Pothuri, Dinah Lin, Keith McWilliams, Mehrnaz Gill, Donatella Bendkenstein, Mika Rao, Robert Tijerina, Janine Iannaelli, Mario Gudmundsson, Maha Rasheed Khan, Yasmine Haddad, Sharron Melton, Shaila Patel, Anika Jackson, Michael Pearce, and Melissa Rascon.

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