WASHINGTON, DC – The 28th Annual Kidney Ball, held November 22, 2008 at the Hilton Washington, raised nearly $1 million to fight kidney disease through corporate sponsorship, ticket sales, and live and silent auctions. The Kidney Ball is the National Kidney Foundation’s largest one—day fundraiser nationwide, raising funds to support medical research, patient and community services, professional education, and organ donation awareness in the DC region. The Washington, DC area leads the nation in the prevalence of kidney disease.
Chairing the Ball this year was Jim Duffey. Vice Chairs included William Couper, Mid—Atlantic President of Bank of America; Carleton Jones, Vice Chairman of the INDUS Corporation; and Donna Morea, President of CGI. Couper will be the 2009 Kidney Ball Chair. NKF/NCA President & CEO Preston A. Englert, Jr., CAE, said, “We are so grateful to the business leaders who devote their time and energy to make this event such a success and we are equally thankful for the outpouring of support from the business community in this tough economic year.”
The National Kidney Foundation welcomed NBA All—Star Alonzo Mourning for a book signing of his new memoir Resilience: Faith, Focus and Triumph. In December of 2003, Mourning had a kidney transplant and then returned to an elite level of performance on the court where he helped the Miami Heat win the NBA World Championship in 2006.
Nearly 1,000 attendees at the Kidney Ball were treated to a special performance by the legendary Doobie Brothers. The theme of the evening, “Takin’ it to the Streets,” was a reference to The Doobie Brothers hit song as well as a call to action to those in attendance to go out into the community and advocate on behalf of the National Kidney Foundation of the National Capital Area.
A highlight of the event was a video tribute featuring husband and wife Mark Immerman and Robin Freedenfeld, kidney transplant recipient and donor, and Dr. Keith Melancon, Director of Kidney & Pancreas Transplantation, Georgetown University Hospital. These individuals were involved in the historic “Six—Way Domino” kidney transplant at Johns Hopkins in April 2008 that involved close to 100 medical professionals, six donors, and six recipients.
Major event sponsors included Air France, Bedford Falls Foundation, Bert Smith & Company, CGI, Host Hotels & Resorts, KPMG, Ronald D. Paul Companies, Inc., Sutherland Media Productions and Unisys.