Nina Garcia honored at the Basser Center Gala for cancer research

On Monday night, Cipriani hosted Wall Street for denim-clad doctors, financiers and celebrities as The Basser Center celebrated their third Jean Bash. The biennial gala focuses on individuals who make changes in breast cancer awareness, research and prevention.

Dr. Amy Gutmann, president of the University of Pennsylvania, opened the evening and silenced a crowd of more than 1,000 who challenged the cause. She then introduced the power couple behind the organization: Mindy and Jon Gray. After an exciting standing ovation in support of the founders, who donated $ 55 million to Basser, the two took turns sharing many personal stories and never abandoning each other as they spoke. Jon, the billionaire COO of The Blackstone Group, told how he met Mindy at UPenn and shouted to her father, Phillip B. Basser, who at the age of 102 is known for his Philadelphia Eagles fandom.

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As Mindy took the podium, her eyes widened and the voice caught in her throat as she shared a teasing tribute to her sister, who left a four-year-old daughter when she died of breast cancer. & # 39; She loved her more than evolution needed & # 39 ;, Mindy said, moving the room close to tears.

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After a public preventative double mastectomy earlier this year, ELLE's own editor-in-chief Nina Garcia & # 39; accepted an honor not for myself, but for all the women who are not as lucky as I am , the women who did not have access to genetic counseling, insurance or a support system … It is everywhere for my sisters. & # 39; & # 39; A video recorded in Spanish of the Project RunwaY Judge highlights the new LATINX x BRCA initiative that Basser launched this year to educate the Latinx community on BRCA-related cancers. According to the Susan G. Komen Foundation, breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer death among Hispanic women, which is likely to cause more cancer as a result of later cancer. The Basser Center is working to spread awareness and support these men and women.

The other honor of the night was Marla Mehlman, who battled breast cancer for ten years before she passed away earlier this year. Her husband accepted so eloquently on her behalf because he wrote his famous article about the decision of Marla and Marla not to tell their children when she fell ill again.

imageAngela Pham /

In keeping with the evening's theme of turning fear into hope, the evening concludes with a lively surprise performance by Jess Glynne.

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