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Fall Gala Hits High Note

A tropical Latin beat and costumed dancers ushered more than 700 Women’s Guild supporters into the Beverly Wilshire Hotel ballroom for the organization’s “hot, hot, hot” 57th anniversary fall gala. Fay and Frank Mancuso were honored with the Hollywood Icon Award, and Bruce Gewertz, MD, Cedars-Sinai’s vice president of Interventional Services, chair of Surgery, and surgeon in chief — received the Medical Visionary Award. Jazz legend Arturo Sandoval and his band brought down the house as the event raised nearly $2 million for the Women’s Guild Simulation Center for Advanced Clinical Skills.

Joe Mantegna took the stage to reminisce about his friendship with the Mancuso family, and Andy Garcia sent a video tribute. A well-known figure in the entertainment and communication industry, Mancuso served as chairman and CEO of Paramount Pictures, where he oversaw such hits as Top Gun, Fatal Attraction, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and The Godfather: Part III as well as continuing the adventures of Indiana Jones and the Star Trek crew. Mancuso also built the USA cable network in partnership with MCA/Universal. Under his leadership as chairman and CEO of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures, the studio’s successes included Leaving Las Vegas, Get Shorty and several James Bond movies. In addition to her philanthropic activities, Fay is a chef specializing in Italian cuisine who has authored a cookbook, Sundays at Four, dedicated to her seven grandchildren. The Mancuso and Gewertz families share a long and close relationship, and their recent European travel adventures were the highlight of a warm video tribute.

Harrison Ford congratulated Dr. Gewertz via video feed, while Philomena McAndrew, MD, introduced him to an appreciative audience. Dr. Gewertz leads what many regard as the preeminent surgical department in the nation, performing more than 30,000 procedures annually. He is also dedicated to teaching future generations of pioneering surgeons and expressed his appreciation for Women’s Guild’s visionary pledge.

“Thanks to the generosity of Women’s Guild, we’ve been able to do some incredible, innovative things in medical education,” Dr. Gewertz said of the Women’s Guild Simulation Center for Advanced Clinical Skills, a cutting edge training facility for world-class surgeons, physicians and nurses. In fully equipped patient, delivery, operating and exam rooms, these healthcare providers learn to collaborate to improve patient outcomes and save lives.

Grammy-nominated singer Monica Mancini serenaded attendees to the jazz sounds of Sandoval and his band, inspiring guests to dance in the aisles. KCBS and KCAL telecaster Kaj Goldberg emceed. The event came together in no small part thanks to the hard work of chairs Cookie Markowitz and Sandy Post, to whom Gina Furth and Barbara Herman lent their expertise as executive advisers.

Bonham’s Tom McNab led a lively auction for a 12-night Crystal Cruise from Istanbul to Rome via the Greek Islands and Malta — followed by many luxury items collected by raffle winners.