LOS ANGELES, July 31, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Fulfillment Fund, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping Los Angeles students overcome obstacles to achieve a college education, will honor Chris Meledandri, Founder and CEO of Illumination Entertainment at the STARS 2013 Benefit Gala on October 23 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.
Chris Meledandri is the founder and CEO of Illumination Entertainment, which has an exclusive worldwide financing and distribution partnership with Universal Pictures. Illumination became a major force in animation starting with the 2010 hit Despicable Me, starring Steve Carell, and continuing with Hop in 2011 and Dr. Seuss' The Lorax in 2012. Despicable Me 2 was released domestically on July 3, 2013 and has earned over $600 million dollars worldwide. Illumination's next film is the highly-anticipated Minions starring Sandra Bullock and Jon Hamm.
Prior to founding Illumination, Chris served as an executive at 20th Century Fox for 13 years where he amassed more than $2 billion in global box office revenue. He became the founding president of Fox Animation and led the acquisition of Blue Sky Studios in 1998. At Fox, Chris supervised and/or executive produced a run of animated box office hits including Ice Age, Ice Age: The Meltdown, Robots, The Simpsons Movie, and Dr. Seuss' Horton Hears a Who!, as well as the hybrid feature Alvin and the Chipmunks. Before Fox, Chris was president of Dawn Steel Pictures at Walt Disney Pictures, where he served as an executive producer of Cool Runnings.
Chris and his wife Leslie have raised two children, gaining a deeper appreciation for the significance of education. Chris is honored to support the Fulfillment Fund and its goals of providing greater opportunities and higher education for all students. Additionally, he serves on the Board of Trustees for The Hotchkiss School and is a committed supporter of the Cambodian Children's Fund.
"The Fulfillment Fund is helping thousands of students in low-income communities overcome obstacles to go to college and earn their degrees," said Kenny Rogers, Fulfillment Fund CEO. "Thanks to the generosity of our extraordinary supporters like Chris, the Fulfillment Fund's work is making a significant difference in Los Angeles, and becoming a model for change in cities around the country."
Co-chairs for the STARS 2013 Gala include Heather and Skip Brittenham, Megan and Peter Chernin, Drs. Melina and Eric Esrailian, Hillary and Adam Fogelson, Sally Whitehill and Mark Gordon, Cherna and Dr. Gary Gitnick, Donna Langley and Ramin Shamshiri, Kelly and Ron Meyer, Lona Williams and David O'Connor and Madeleine and Tom Sherak.
Now in its 19th year, the Fulfillment Fund's STARS Gala has honored Rob Moore (2012), Rich Ross (2011), James Gianopulos (2010), Judd Apatow and Leslie Mann (2009), Thomas Tull (2008), Marc Shmuger (2007), Tom Rothman (2006), Brian Grazer (2005), Amy Pascal (2004), Paula and Sumner Redstone (2003), Megan and Peter Chernin, Sheri and Les Biller (2002), Jeffrey Katzenberg (2001), Robert Iger (2000), Edgar Bronfman, Jr. (1999), Rupert Murdoch (1998), Barbara Lazaroff and Wolfgang Puck (1997), Candy and Aaron Spelling (1996), Darlene and Steven Fogel and Jackie and Howard Banchik (1995).
For more information and to purchase tickets, please call LPA Events (310) 201-5033 or visit www.fulfillment.org.
Serving the Los Angeles community for over 35 years, the Fulfillment Fund makes college a reality for students in educationally and economically under-resourced communities. By providing a college access curriculum, college counseling, mentoring, scholarships and other individualized support, the Fulfillment Fund helps students get to college and realize their educational dreams. More than 90% of Fulfillment Fund high school graduates go on to college, compared to 54% of low-income students nationally.
SOURCE Fulfillment Fund