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Jewish Journal

The Circuit

by Norma Zager

April 20, 2006 | 8:00 pm

Korn Helps UCLA Growth

Civic leader and philanthropist Carolbeth Korn donated $200,000 to the UCLA School of Public Health to endow, in perpetuity, an annual $10,000 prize honoring the outstanding graduating student each year. Beginning this May, recipients will be selected by the faculty leadership and dean of the School of Public Health and announced during the school's annual awards event. Korn, who graduated from UCLA in 1959 with a bachelor's degree in public health, serves on the advisory board for the school and is one of its founding members.

"By establishing this annual prize, I hope to encourage and motivate public health students to become our nation's public health leaders," Korn said. "It is my love for this prestigious university, which educated me, that makes me very proud to be investing in the School of Public Health's exceptional healthcare training and education. The students who receive this award will have the opportunity to touch, change and enrich the lives of many."

Cowboy Heroes

Turquoise and cowboy boots mingled with sequins and sapphires April 8 at the John Wayne Cancer Institute "Odyssey Ball" at the Beverly Hilton. It was "yeehaa" time as guests in cowboy garb and black-tie glitz wandered through the silent auction bidding on western memorabilia, Gucci wallets and wine. They turned out to celebrate Nancy Reagan as the first annual True Grit Humanitarian Award honoree and Dean Smith as the Duke Special Service Award recipient.

Norman Lear introduced the frail but elegant former first lady who thanked the group for the honor, recalling with fondness the legacy of love and support always offered by her friend John "The Duke" Wayne. Guests watched video clips of the great cowboys stars of the past who lost their battle with cancer, then a short film about Reagan's life with her husband, movie star hero/governor/president, Ronald. Lear also recounted his memory of inviting the former president to appear on the TV show "Maude."

Accepting the offer, Reagan told Lear, he didn't agree with the politics of the program but would defend to the death anyone's right to say what they want, even if they are dead wrong."

Women of Spirit

L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa made a surprise appearance to honor three women who have served their communities with true dedication as they received the National Council of Jewish Women's (NCJW) Hannah Solomon Award.

"We choose women who have made a significant contribution to our community, who represent the values of our organization and who dedicate their lives to community service," said NCJW/LA President Barbara Ruskin.

Villaraigosa spoke about honoree and community icon Robin Kramer with heartfelt gratitude for her support and ability to help run the city serving as his right arm. Prior to serving as Villaraigosa's chief of staff, Kramer served as deputy mayor and chief of staff to Mayor Richard J. Riordan. She was recently named as a "Forward 50," one of the most influential Jews in America," by The Forward.

Honoree Rose Norton, long time civic leader and activist, has consistently shunned efforts to bestow awards upon her many charitable contributions, but at the behest of husband, Ben, former mayor of Beverly Hills, she acquiesced and admitted she was glad she had. Norton joined NCJW/LA more than 50 years ago and has served as the division president, membership chairperson, vice president of administration, and president of El Nido, an agency founded by NCJW/LA. Currently she is actively involved in the council's thrift stores, which provide 70 percent of the funding for NCJW/LA's many community outreach programs.

Honoree Bettina Kurowski, a pioneer in the HMO industry, is known for her significant contributions toward improving the quality of cancer care. Kurowski has focused her volunteer efforts over the past 20 years on fundraising within the UJC family of organizations, held nine chairs positions spanning three communities, including the major gifts campaign chair for the Women in the Valley, the health industries division chair in Los Angeles, chair of the Chai Division of the Valley Alliance and chair of the women's business and professional division.

Proceeds from the Skirball Cultural Center event benefited NCJW/LA's arts and literacy programs for youth and its community counseling center for individuals and families.

Marks on the Money

David Marks, executive vice president and head of U.S. corporate banking for Wells Fargo, has joined the board of directors of Jewish Family Service of Los Angeles (JFS)

"We are delighted to welcome David Marks to the JFS board. Wells Fargo and its executives have long been a source of support and leadership to JFS, and David's appointment continues this valuable partnership," said Paul S. Castro, JFS executive director. For more information visit www.jfsla.org.

 

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