July 28, 2005
Poochies in Guccis? It was all about what the well-dressed doggy will wear as the Animal Alliance, in cooperation with Animal Fair Media, held its sixth annual Paws for Style at Loew's Beverly Hills Hotel. Only one catfight erupted behind the scenes in what was otherwise a "purrfectly" pleasing event. Humans nibbled on hors d'ouvres and desserts and pooches dined out of silver dishes.
Celebs were in attendance to support their favorite animals, including Hugh Hefner, who has long been the leading advocate for bunnies.
Paula Abdul led her trio of dogs across the runway sporting Jackrocketwear as the more social of the canine contingency showed off their Playboy doggy duds.
Jeanne Buss and her dog, Princess, paraded the latest in Laker wear and courtside couture. Also featured were designers Diane Von Furstenberg, Donald Pliner, Nicole Miller, Theory among others.
Although the evening was a fun romp, the Animal Alliance takes their job of caring for and rescuing animals very seriously and does great work.
To learn more about the fashions or the funding for Animal Alliance, call (310) 859-7626.
Good for Gady
Dr. Gady Levy was selected as one of only three Americans among an elite field of 37 young, Jewish professionals around the world for a prestigious Nahum Goldmann Fellowship.
The fellowship is a summer institute aimed at nurturing a new generation of Jewish communal leadership. The program provides an intensive experience of Jewish learning, living and leadership for Jews under the age of 40 who demonstrate the potential to make a change in their communities. The conference will take place in Sweden from Aug. 22 to Sept. 1.
Levy has led the department of continuing education at the University of Judaism for five years serving as vice president.
For more information about the University of Judaism or the department of continuing education, visit www.uj.edu or call (310) 476-9777.
Health and Wellness
Rabbi Elliot Dorff, rector and distinguished professor of philosophy at the University of Judaism, was appointed by the California Department of Health Services (DHS) to convene a Human Stem Cell Research Advisory Committee. This committee has been charged with developing minimum standards for institutional review boards to use in reviewing and approving human embryonic stem cell research projects. The committee will begin meeting in August.
In spring 1993, Dorff served on the Ethics Committee of Hillary Rodham Clinton's Health Care Task Force. In March 1997 and May 1999, he testified on the subjects of human cloning and stem cell research before the President's National Bioethics Advisory Commission. From 2000 to 2002 he served on the National Human Resources Protections Advisory Commission, charged with reviewing and revising the federal guidelines for protecting human subjects in research projects. He is currently working on a project on Judaism and genetics for the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and he is a member of that organization's Dialogue on Science Ethics, and Religion Advisory Committee.
Dorff teaches a course on Jewish law at UCLA School of Law as a visiting professor and was awarded the Journal of Law and Religion's Lifetime Achievement Award. He is vice chair of the Conservative Movement's Committee on Jewish Law and Standards.
A Sweet Time
Smiles were abundant last week as Vista Del Mar sponsored a screening of "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" at the Goldwyn Theatre in Beverly Hills. More than 900 adults and kids downed chocolate and sweets and with endorphins flowing, ate up every moment of the new Johnny Depp flick and raised $122,000 for Vista Del Mar.
Proceeds from the event will help support Vista Del Mar's residential treatment facility, private adoption agency, foster-care program, nonpublic school and its four affiliated divisions: Family Service of Santa Monica; Home-SAFE; Julia Ann Singer Center; and Reiss-Davis Child Study Center.
Each year, Vista's programs and services provide a safe haven for more than 5,000 children from throughout the Los Angeles area whose lives have been interrupted by abuse, neglect or abandonment.
Hero in the Sky
A celebration of life event was held recently to honor the late Robert Maguire Jr. Maguire Jr. was the chief pilot of the covert mission "Operation Magic Carpet," which saved 40,000-50,000 Yemenite Jews from persecution and danger after World War II by secretly flying them to Israel over hostile territories. Maguire's father, Robert Francis Sr., was a judge at the Nuremberg war crimes trials.
Wishes Come True
As part of Disneyland's 50th anniversary weekend celebration July 15-17, the Disney Cruise Line made a wish come true and kept the Disney Magic cruise ship at the Port of San Pedro one additional night as it hosted "An Evening of Magic" to benefit the Make-a-Wish Foundation. Visiting a Disney theme park is the No. 1 request the 25-year-old organization, which fulfills the wishes of children with life-threatening illnesses, receives.
The July 16 event kicked off with a sunset ceremony, where outgoing Disney CEO Michael Eisner presented a $1.04 million check to Make-A-Wish Foundation of America President and CEO David Williams.
"As the foundation's largest sponsor, Disney is proud to [play a role] in this extraordinary organization," Eisner said. "Disneyland knows a thing or two about granting wishes."
Then Disney CEO-elect Bob Iger surprised Williams when Minnie Mouse came to the stage with a surprise second check-for another $1 million.
"A wish is very simple idea," Williams said. "The impact it has on a child and the family is absolutely profound."
"At the end of the day, it is all about the kids," Jeff Germain, chairman of the board of Make-a-Wish, who has been with the organization for four years, told The Journal. "It's not just what's in the eyes of the children; it is in the eyes of their families -- the look in their eyes and the impact it has on them is immeasurable. It helps them get healthier."
"I Wish to Have A Dance Party" came alive in Rockin' Bar D where pictures of "fulfilled wishes" flashed on the screen and the Radio Disney street team kept the preteens busy prior to the arrival of "That's So Raven" star Raven Simone, who has helped grant more than 30 wishes. When the actress-singer arrived, she had a friend with her -- 12-year-old Ashley Gullap, whose wish was to meet Raven and attend a red carpet with her. Ashley and Raven took the stage, meeting fans and signing autographs.
After teaching the crowd how to dance the "Cotton Eye Joe" during the dance party, 14-year-old Travis Flores, whose wish was to be an author, autographed his book, "The Spider Who Never Gave Up," in the Oceaneer Club.
The evening ended on a truly magical note under the stars at the Goofy Pool stage when "American Idol"'s Kimberly Locke and Peabo Bryson sang "Wishes" off the compilation CD of the same name ($5 of every CD sale goes to Make-a-Wish). After which, the two sang "A Whole New World" and were joined on stage by an assortment of Disney characters who hugged each Make-a-Wish child.
At the end of the night, the only wish that hadn't come true was the one everyone had of being able to stay on the ship just a bit longer.
For more information on Make-a-Wish, visit www.wish.org. -- Shoshana Lewin, Contributing Writer
Hustle over to the UCLA Tennis Center to catch rising Jewish stars at the Mercedes-Benz Cup. This year's line-up features top world players-with more than the usual amount of Jewish stars among them. Paul Goldstein, 29, a wildcard entry from San Francisco, has battled his way into another round, aiming to beat his career high ranking of 69. Israeli Amir Hadad will also fight for advancement into the quarters, while Playa del Rey wunderkind Zack Fleishman, a promising up-and-comer, will also compete. Rounding out the field are top Israeli doubles team of Yoni Erlich and Andy Ram. Last year the team made it all the way to the finals, and wowed spectators with their intensity and perseverance. This year, who knows, they could go all the way.
For tickets and information, www.mercedes-benzcup.com.