Children’s Cancer & Blood Foundation Breakthrough Ball Gala Honoring Denise Ilitch, Dr. James Bussel and Dr. David Lyden

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The Plaza Hotel, November 15th, 2012.

Honorees Muffie Potter Aston and Buddy Valastro enjoy the 2011 Breakthrough Ball

I have had the privilege of witnessing the discovery and development of new treatments that have changed the lives of children across the world thanks to funds raised each year at the Breakthrough Ball.

The Children’s Cancer & Blood Foundation (CCBF) will host its annual “Breakthrough Ball” on Thursday evening, November 15, 2012 in the exquisite grand ballroom of the Plaza Hotel. Since its inception, CCBF’s gala has been a stunning success, raising over $1 million each year to treat the thousands of children suffering from cancer and blood disorders at the Division of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology of NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center.

CCBF will present the coveted “Breakthrough Spirit” award to Denise Ilitch, Esq., President of Ilitch Enterprises and Publisher of Ambassador Magazine. Ms. Ilitch and her family are renowned for their tireless advocacy on behalf of children across the country, and CCBF is proud to recognize these efforts. Alongside Ms. Ilitch, Physician-Scientists Dr. James Bussel and Dr. David Lyden will receive the “Medical Breakthrough” award for their remarkable research and continued efforts in treating children with cancer and blood diseases. Incredibly deserving of this honor, Dr. Bussel’s most recent discovery of a treatment for alloimmune thrombocytopenia has helped to save thousands of children’s lives. Dr. Lyden’s landmark breakthrough in the fight against cancer makes him the ideal recipient of this award as his research has major implications for improved prognosis and treatment, bringing the medical community closer to a cure. On November 15th, these admirable individuals will join an impressive group of past award recipients including Katie Couric, Ted Turner, Toni Braxton, Swizz Beatz, Daryl Hall and HRH Princess Ghida Talal of Jordan.

CCBF proudly welcomes new Gala Co-Chairs, Muffie Potter Aston, Buddy Valastro, Heather Robinson and Nancy Shaw Raquet, who share their talents with a distinguished and dedicated Board and Committee. The evening will feature a cocktail reception, a world-class dinner prepared by Chef Robb Garceau, an exciting auction led by famed Phillips de Pury & Company auctioneer Simon de Pury and a live musical performance by Atlantic recording artist Rumer. Led by Master of Ceremonies, Charles Grodin, the inspirational program will conclude with a pledge item that gives guests the opportunity to truly influence a child’s life by funding an entire year of chemotherapy treatment.

The Foundation’s Chairman, Les Lieberman, spoke appreciatively of all those participating in this year’s event, saying “I have had the privilege of witnessing the discovery and development of new treatments that have changed the lives of children across the world thanks to funds raised each year at the Breakthrough Ball. Without the support of our generous donors, these breakthroughs would not be possible.” For more information or to buy tickets:


Note to the editors on the Children’s Cancer & Blood Foundation

CCBF has helped the Division of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology of NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center grow into one of the top centers of its kind, treating more than 1,000 children in over 10,000 clinic visits each year. NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital is the only tri-state-area children's hospital listed on the 2011-12 U.S. News and World Report Honor Roll, and the hospital ranks in the nation's top ten for pediatric care. We are proud to sponsor the nation’s largest thalassemia clinic, the most complete hemophilia center in New York, and a world-renowned platelet disorders program. A distinctive feature of our Oncology Program is its supportive, family-centered care model, which offers the most advanced cancer treatment available in an environment of compassion and wellness.

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Lizzie Smith
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