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Face-Off for a Cure

March 23, 2011 7 comments

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On Monday March 21st, over 450 guests came together at the spectacular Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City to celebrate “Face-Off for a Cure: An Evening to Benefit Autism Speaks and The Gillen Brewer School” – an event in partnership with the National Hockey League.

The evening began with cocktails and a silent auction in the museum’s Great Hall, with guests bidding on items such as tickets to the 2012 Winter Classic, a jersey signed by dozens of NHL Alum players, and an All-Star branded hockey puck, signed by Rick Nash, #61. NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman posed for photos with such hockey greats as Pat LaFontaine and Ken Daneyko, as well as Coach Scott Wiley of the Colgate Women’s Hockey Team.  After cocktails guests moved into the awe-inspiring Temple of Dedur in the Sackler Wing, where the light of the setting sun was simulated on the temple walls, and guests gathered to hear remarks by event emcee, NBC Nightly News Correspondent Peter Alexander.

The evening’s honorees, Frank D’Amelio, EVP, Business Operations & Chief Financial Officer, Pfizer; Brian Monihan, Senior Vice President & General Manger, Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia; Andrew Robertson, President, Chief Executive Officer BBDO Worldwide; and Richard Segal, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer, Seavest, Inc., each addressed the crowd with mentions of their own personal relationships to autism and philanthropy. The night’s end brought a special surprise for the audience- a visit from Lord Stanley himself- The Stanley Cup- after which guests had an opportunity to make pledges towards two specific programs for Autism Speaks and The Gillen Brewer School. Face Off for a Cure raised over $1.1 million and counting.

Autism Speaks would like to thank our event Co-Chairs, Henry Schacht, Chairman, The Gillen Brewer School; Tim Solso, Chairman and CEO, Cummins Inc.; Gary Bettman, Commissioner, National Hockey League; Paul Tagliabue, Former Commissioner, National Football League; and Suzanne & Bob Wright, Founders of Autism Speaks.  We would also like to recognize our friends at the Gillen Brewer School, the NHL, the evening’s honorees, special guests and our many wonderful sponsors and patrons who supported Face Off for a Cure to make it a resounding success.

For additional coverage of the event, please visit The Wall Street Journal.


NBC Icon Bob Wright in a candid discussion on autism and how the advertising & media business has helped make Autism Speaks a household name

October 1, 2010 9 comments

On Friday, October 1 Autism Speaks was featured during Advertising Week, New York City’s preeminent media conference for advertisers.  Bob Wright, co-founder of Autism Speaks and former Chairman and CEO of NBC Universal and Vice Chair of GE participated in a discussion about autism and advertising. Bob had one of the longest and most successful tenures of any media company chief executive with more than two decades at the helm of one of the world’s leading media and entertainment companies leading from 1986 to 2007. He was joined by Andrew Robertson, CEO of BBDO Worldwide and a member of Autism Speaks’ Board of Directors, who moderated the discussion.

In the one hour seminar Bob discussed how he has applied his knowledge from the corporate world to the non-profit sector, and how Autism Speaks has succeeded in making autism a household word. Both he and Andrew shared the story of how they started Autism Speaks award-winning Ad Council public service announcement campaign thanks to the support of BBDO, an elite world renowned advertising agency, and the Ad Council. Since its inception, it’s garnered over $249 million dollars in donated media resulting in much needed awareness for families and has ultimately led to fundraising dollars for the needed research into the cause and treatments for autism.

Over the last five years, under Bob and Suzanne’s leadership, and with the help of hundreds of volunteers, Autism Speaks has emerged as the largest autism science and advocacy organization in the world. And autism has moved to the fore of the public’s consciousness – nationally and globally — in large part due to Autism Speaks’ innovative and highly effective awareness initiatives.

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