J. Mendel President and Chief Operating Officer Susan Sokol to Receive Top Honor from City of Hope, May 14

Jan 26, 2012, 18:19 ET from City of Hope

NEW YORK, Jan. 26. 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Fashion industry leader and philanthropist Susan Sokol will receive The Spirit of Life® Award at City of Hope's Spring Luncheon on Monday, May 14, at The Plaza Hotel. City of Hope's East End Chapter/Jeanne Kaye League will present the fashion industry leader with its top philanthropic honor in recognition of her professional achievements, charitable contributions and personal commitment to the fight against women's cancers.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20120126/DC42894)

The fashion show and luncheon will benefit lifesaving research, treatment and education programs at City of Hope. For information, contact Michele DiVeterano at 800-344-8169, mdiveterano@coh.org.

"My personal experience of fighting and surviving breast cancer could not have happened without the extraordinary advances in scientific research and medical treatment at institutions like City of Hope," said Sokol. "I am honored to be recognized by an organization that embodies hope and provides compassionate care to patients and their families."

Sokol is widely considered one of the fashion industry's most distinguished and highly-regarded senior executives. The current president and chief operating officer of J. Mendel, Sokol has served in executive positions for high-profile brands Vera Wang, Michael Kors, Pegasus Apparel Group/Leiber Group, Donna Karan International and Calvin Klein Inc. She has repeatedly taken companies to their next level of success.

Throughout her extraordinary career in the apparel and accessory industry, Sokol has demonstrated compassion and support for a number of local and national charities.  She is a dedicated advocate for women's health and research into women's cancers.

"We're proud to recognize Susan for her business leadership and commitment to raising awareness for women's cancers," said Lisa Kaye Fuld, co-president, East End Chapter/Jeanne Kaye League. "Her personal story provides hope and inspiration to women who are fighting cancer around the world."

Scientists with City of Hope's Women's Cancers Program are investigating the biology of breast, ovarian and endometrial cancers as well as interventions that could reduce cancer risk for all women. Researchers are identifying new treatments and prevention methods. They are also examining issues that affect women with cancer and their families, such as spirituality, the emotional impact of cancer on caregivers, and other quality-of-life issues. To learn more about City of Hope's Women's Cancers Program, visit http://womenscancers.cityofhope.org.

Past honorees of The Spirit of Life Award include Katie Couric, Hoda Kotb, Fran Drescher, Kelly Ripa, Cindy Crawford, Paula Zahn, Mary Tyler Moore, Robin Roberts, Kay Unger, Laura Geller and Elayne "Honey" Cook.

About J. Mendel
J. Mendel is a fifth generation company established on the premises of extraordinary luxury, exceptional quality and unparalleled style. Gilles Mendel began his career by apprenticing under his father, Jacques, at the eponymous J. Mendel fur salon in Paris. In 1981, he came to the helm as designer and chief executive officer opening his first J. Mendel boutique at Elizabeth Arden's Fifth Avenue salon. Once established in New York, Mendel quickly became a favorite among the chic set in Manhattan. In 1985, Gilles relocated his fur collections to a boutique at 723 Madison Avenue, which still serves as the company's U.S. flagship.

Continuing in the couture tradition of the house, Gilles Mendel brought the company to the next level with the launch of a full scale ready-to-wear collection in 2002. Today he designs four full collections a year including accessories for this established luxury brand. Combining the highest quality materials and impeccable craftsmanship with a modern design sensibility, Mendel's creations have attracted both critical acclaim and commercial success. The collections embrace luxe-femininity, applying innovative techniques and a Parisian aesthetic to achieve a feeling of effortless elegance.

In 2003, Mendel was inducted into the Council of Fashion Designers of America. This year, he will receive the National Design Award for exemplary work in fashion design from the prestigious Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt , National Design Museum.

About City of Hope
City of Hope is a leading research, treatment and education center for cancer, diabetes and other life-threatening diseases. Designated as a comprehensive cancer center, the highest honor bestowed by the National Cancer Institute, and a founding member of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, City of Hope's research and treatment protocols advance care throughout the nation. City of Hope is located in Duarte, Calif., just northeast of Los Angeles, and is ranked as one of "America's Best Hospitals" in cancer by U.S.News & World Report. Founded in 1913, City of Hope is a pioneer in the fields of bone marrow transplantation and genetics. For more information, visit www.cityofhope.org or follow City of Hope on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or Flickr.

Katie Kornfield
Phone: 800-888-5323

Jocelyn Levy
Phone: 917-658-6452


SOURCE City of Hope