DETROIT, April 28, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- More than 600 guests were given the "red carpet" treatment when they attended the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute's 34th Annual Dinner Saturday, April 16, at the Michigan Motion Picture Studios in Pontiac, Mich. The signature fundraiser raised more than $2.4 million, thanks to the generosity of many sponsors and supporters. The event benefits cancer research programs at the Karmanos Cancer Institute.
This year's Annual Dinner Chairs were Paula and Steve Kiefer. Steve Kiefer is vice president, Global Purchasing and Supply Chain at General Motors. This is the sixth consecutive year that General Motors has been a major sponsor. In addition to having the company's executive leadership serve as chairs, the GM Foundation once again made a significant grant of $400,000; and GM donated the first retail production 2017 Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport Collector's Edition. This vehicle was auctioned at the Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction in Palm Beach, Fl., earlier this month. The winning bid brought in $170,000 with 100 percent benefitting Karmanos Cancer Institute.
"Paula and I are honored to be among the distinguished list of GM leadership who have chaired the event," said Steve Kiefer. "Our successful collaboration helps to support the innovative research underway at Karmanos, which advances treatments and survival outcomes for those affected by cancer."
It was announced at the gala that the chairs for Karmanos' 35th Annual Dinner will be GM Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Mary Barra and her husband Tony Barra.
The 34th Annual Dinner black-tie event included a cocktail reception, seated dinner, program, live entertainment, an exciting raffle and live auction, along with a few surprises.
A red carpet welcomed guests to the motion picture studios. The cocktail reception displayed iconic GM vehicles from the movies including cars from the "Transformers" film series such as Bumblebee the Chevrolet Camaro and Sideswipe the Concept Corvette Stingray. Other concept movie cars featured included the Cadillac Ciel from "Entourage" and the Cadillac Sixteen from "Real Steel." Set pieces and props from the Transformers 4 film served as décor, treating guests to a behind-the-scenes look at a real movie set.
Attendees had a chance to win one of four raffle prizes donated by Somerset Collection including: a $5,000 Louis Vuitton shopping spree; $5,000 Burberry shopping spree; $5,000 Salvatore Ferragamo shopping spree; and dinner for 10 at The Capital Grille.
Following the cocktail reception, guests were guided into the elegant dining area. A surprise performance by local artist and former American Idol contestant Jena Irene Asciutto entertained the crowd. The program, emceed by WDIV Local 4's Consumer Investigator Hank Winchester, recognized Annual Dinner Chairs Paula and Steve Kiefer, and former Chair of the Karmanos Cancer Institute board of directors, Chuck Becker, for his years of service. This is the third consecutive year that Hank Winchester has emceed the event.
The live auction, presented by General Motors, included the following exciting VIP packages: Indy 500; Major League Baseball All-Star Game; Country Music Awards; Men's New York Fashion package; Cadillac V-Series Racing package; dinner for 10 with Steve Kiefer; and a Shinola City Clock. As part of the evening's auction, GM donated VIN #002 of the 2017 Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport Collector's Edition, which also sold for $170,000. The live auction, led by auctioneer Spanky Assiter, founder of Assiter Auctioneers and president of the National Auctioneers Association, raised $644,500.
The festivities continued with live entertainment by "The Royce & Jenn Band" and dancing through midnight.
"This year's Annual Dinner was another outstanding event, thanks to the leadership of Chairs Paula and Steve Kiefer and the incredible support of GM and all of our generous sponsors and supporters," said Gerold Bepler, M.D., Ph.D., president and CEO of Karmanos Cancer Institute. "The dedicated team of cancer experts at Karmanos never stop finding ways to improve treatment options for those battling this disease. Supporting cancer research helps us continue our work to discover and advance targeted treatments that are better tolerated and effective in controlling this disease so patients can survive and enjoy life with their loved ones."
OUTSTANDING COMMUNITY SUPPORT
Host Sponsor for the Karmanos Cancer Institute's 34th Annual Dinner was General Motors. Presenting Sponsor was Gallagher-Kaiser Corporation. Gala Sponsor was Edw. C. Levy Co. Executive Sponsor was Lear Corporation. Venue Sponsors were: The Linden D. Nelson Family, The John Rakolta Jr. Family, and The Robert Taubman Family.
Entertainment Sponsors included: AVL Americas; Credit Union ONE; and Johnson Controls. Dinner Sponsors included: ABC Group; Crain Communications; The Delphi Foundation; erae Automotive Systems; Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn LLP; Kenwal Steel Corp.; Elizabeth and Michael Kojaian; NFI Advisors Inc.; Piston Group; PRG; Quicken Loans; Tenneco, Inc.; UAW- GM Center for Human Resources; and Worthington Industries.
Media Sponsors included: Magazine Sponsors, HOUR Detroit and dbusiness Magazines; Television Sponsor, WDIV Local 4; and Radio Sponsor, News/Talk 760 WJR.
Platinum Level Table Sponsors included: Barton Malow Co.; Fisher Dynamics; Inteva Products; Magna; McLaren Health Care; Penske Corporation/Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix; and TI Automotive.
For more information about the Annual Dinner or cancer services at Karmanos, call 1-800 KARMANOS (1-800-527-6266) or visit www.karmanos.org.
About the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute
Located in mid-town Detroit, Michigan, the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, a subsidiary of McLaren Health Care, is one of 45 National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer centers in the United States. Karmanos is among the nation's best cancer centers. Through the commitment of 1,000 staff, including nearly 300 physicians and researchers on faculty at the Wayne State University School of Medicine, and supported by thousands of volunteer and financial donors, Karmanos strives to prevent, detect and eradicate all forms of cancer. Its long-term partnership with the WSU School of Medicine enhances the collaboration of critical research and academics related to cancer care. Gerold Bepler, M.D., Ph.D., is the Institute's president and chief executive officer. For more information call 1-800-KARMANOS or go to www.karmanos.org.
About General Motors
General Motors Co. (NYSE:GM, TSX: GMM) and its partners produce vehicles in 30 countries, and the company has leadership positions in the world's largest and fastest-growing automotive markets. GM, its subsidiaries and joint venture entities sell vehicles under the Chevrolet, Cadillac, Baojun, Buick, GMC, Holden, Jiefang, Opel, Vauxhall and Wuling brands. More information on the company and its subsidiaries, including OnStar, a global leader in vehicle safety, security and information services, can be found at http://www.gm.com.
SOURCE Karmanos Cancer Institute