It was another fun and lively Associates Board Annual Cocktail Party on Friday, October 11, at the Lakewood in West Loop, Chicago. Anything but ordinary, this event highlighted the importance of health, medical research and raised an unprecedented $45,000 for grants to young investigators conducting ground-breaking research at the University of Chicago Digestive Diseases Center.
The evening began with a unique twist: among the upbeat music and lively chatter, Dr. David Rubin and his staff administered 30 free flu shots to event attendees. This “Shot for a Shot” station was an absolute hit, and a great way to spread awareness (and immunity!) for this coming flu season.
Guests eased into the competitive spirit and bid up this year’s exciting silent auction items. By the end of the evening, lucky winners went home with one-of-a-kind prizes, including a vacation at the St. Regis in Park City, Utah, countless fine wines and spirits, and perfect staycation packages. For those looking for a little one-off excitement, our Spin-to-Win wheel offered a chance to win any of a selection of wines, gym memberships, and restaurant gift cards to round out their ideal weekend. Attendees munched on tacos and tamales catered by the Lakewood, and enjoyed refreshing beverages topped off with Tito’s Handmade Vodka. As drinks and conversations flowed, the dance floor came to life as Go2Guys DJ spun hits that kept the crowd dancing the night away.
Dr. David Rubin thanked the Associates Board and their guests for their support of researchers just starting out in their careers. To punctuate that point, he handed the mic over to Dr. Dejan Micic who was funded earlier this year to study the data from 300 individual readmissions to the hospital for severe Ulcerative Colitis and learn which interventions would be best in the future. This work will improve the lives of patients now. So exciting!
The real highlight of the evening was when Associates Board President Brad Peterson announced an exciting new opportunity: a live call for donations, to be matched 2 to 1 up to $5,000 thanks to three anonymous donors. An amazing display of generosity ensued, as event guests raised an incredible $6,000 in only a matter of minutes. With so many fellows and physicians present, the vibrant spirit of giving did not go unnoticed. These contributions make a tremendous impact on GIRF’s ability to fund tomorrow’s innovators—and this year, we are enabled to fund more fellows than ever. Funds from this event will be used for grant programs in the Spring of 2020. If you weren’t able to attend but would like to contribute to this effort, you can make a gift online here. Check out the photos from this night to remember!