Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Designer Vince Camuto and Guest at the Foundation Fighting Blindness Dining in the Dark event.(Photographer: Kelly Sheehan)

The Fashion Ball: Dining in the Dark
Celebrates Fashion Visionaries, 
Benefits Foundation Fighting Blindness

WHO:                                       Visionary Award honorees Rick Darling, President of the world’s leading consumer goods supply chain management company, LF USA, and esteemed fashion executive Jill Granoff; Committee Chair Evan Mittman, Designer Vince Camuto, CEO of Lord and Taylor Brendan Hoffman, Cosmetic Executive Carlotta Jacobson, President of Licensing at Jones Apparel Group Mary Belle, CEO B&G Plastics Chet Kolton, Principal of Deloitte Consulting Mitch Katcher, and President of Schifter + Partners Tim Schifter.
WHAT:                                      The Foundation Fighting Blindness hosted THE FASHION BALL: DINING IN THE DARK on May 25th at the Ritz Carlton Battery Park to honor fashion visionaries who have supported the organization’s urgent mission to drive research that will lead to preventions, treatments and cures for people affected by macular degeneration, retinitis pigmentosa, Usher syndrome, and the entire spectrum of retinal degenerative diseases.

                                    Dining in the Dark was a rare and unique sensory adventure that took guests on a journey of taste, smell, sound and touch…all in the dark. For about 30 minutes, attendees enjoyed their entrĂ©e using only these senses, to get a glimpse into the lives of the blind. Visually impaired servers, who were trained specifically for the dinner to use a system of ropes and stanchions, helped guests navigate through this new experience.  It served as a memorable backdrop as the Foundation Fighting Blindness honored extraordinary individuals who made a lasting impression on the fashion community and on the lives of more than 10 million Americans living with blinding retinal diseases.

                                     “Dining in the Dark truly heightens awareness about the challenges visually impaired individuals experience every day,” said Foundation Fighting Blindness CEO Bill Schmidt. “We’re thrilled to recognize the contributions of these fashion industry leaders as we come together to support promising research to ensure brighter futures for people living in darkness.”

                                    Guests also enjoyed the musical entertainment of Los Gatos del Barrio, a New York based Latino band of legally blind musician.

Over the last 40 years, the Foundation Fighting Blindness has honored the Honorable Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Steve Wynn, Lee Iacocca, J. Willard Marriot, Jr. and Ross & Margot Perot.

WHEN:                                     Wednesday, May 25, 2011

WHERE:                       Ritz Carlton Battery Park New York City