On Saturday, Nov. 1, Hattie Larlham’s 14th annual Circle of Caring gala raised more than $196,000 in support of the children and adults with developmental disabilities that Hattie Larlham serves. More than 275 people attended the event, which was held at the Bertram Inn & Conference Center in Aurora.
Each year, the Circle of Caring recognizes those who have positively impacted the lives of people with developmental disabilities. At the 2014 Circle of Caring, Hattie Larlham honored Cleveland Indians Senior VP of Public Affairs Bob DiBiasio and Cleveland Indians Charities. DiBiasio serves as the president of the Cleveland Indians Charities.
“Bob DiBiasio and Cleveland Indians Charities are a great example of the great things that can happen when you work together,” said Hattie Larlham CEO Dennis Allen.
DiBiasio explained that he and his wife, Penny, first became introduced to Hattie Larlham when their friends’ daughter received care from Hattie Larlham. The parents of that child asked DiBiasio if Cleveland Indians Charities would support Hattie Larlham’s Sugar Bush Golf Classic.
“How could you say ‘no’ to a friend in need?” DiBiasio said. “On a personal level I saw firsthand what wonderful work was being done, which made it easy to connect with Hattie Larlham on a professional level.”
In honor of DiBiasio and Cleveland Indians Charities, the gala had a baseball theme. DiBiasio also received a specially designed Hattie Larlham baseball jersey, as well as a proclamation from Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson.
Bill Wills, co-host of WTAM 1100’s Wills & Snyder in the Morning, was this year’s Circle of Caring special guest. Wills and DiBiasio have been friends for several years and have emceed Hattie Larlham’s annual Sugar Bush Golf Outing together. “There’s only one Bobby D. and he’s simply the best,” Wills said.
Betsy Kling, WKYC chief meteorologist and 2012 Circle of Caring honoree, returned as the evening’s emcee. Since 2004, Kling has been a strong supporter of Hattie Larlham, hosting previous Circle of Caring galas as well as promoting live and televised auctions for the organization.
The event also included live entertainment by pianist Christopher Milo; red-carpet photos; a cocktail reception; a full course dinner; a wine pull; and live, silent and fund-a-need auctions.
On stage, Allen credited the success of Hattie Larlham to the collaborative power of the organization and its supporters. He said, “Together we can do great things so that people with disabilities and their families can realize comfort, joy & achievement.”
The 2014 Circle of Caring was presented by The Alpha Group. Sponsors include Summa Health System; Bud & Katie Koch; Parker Hannifin Corporation; Robert W. Baird & Co. Inc.; Spangenberg, Shibley & Liber LLP; Visual Marking Systems; A.R. “Bud” and Mary Elaine Mays; Akron Children’s Hospital; Brouse McDowell; Cleveland Indians; Cuyahoga County Board of Developmental Disabilities; KeyBank; The Lubrizol Corporation; The MetroHealth System; Plante Moran; PNC Bank; Summit County Developmental Disabilities Board; University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital; Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease LLP. All proceeds benefited children and adults with developmental disabilities at Hattie Larlham. For more information and a complete listing of the Circle of Caring sponsors, visit www.hattielarlham.org.
ABOUT HATTIE LARLHAM
Established in 1961, Hattie Larlham is a nonprofit organization that provides services to 1,500 children and adults with developmental disabilities. Hattie Larlham inspires people with disabilities and their families to dream and achieve through the medical, residential, vocational and recreational services the organization offers. For more information, visit www.hattielarlham.org.
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