Young New Yorkers kicked off the holiday season on Thursday night at the fifth-annual Toast To Wishes, a charity event organised by Make-A-Wish New York’s under-40 board.
The event took place at Marquee in Chelsea, and had been sold-out for six weeks. (Last year’s event was so packed that the organisers had to limit the tickets this year to 650, down from 750.)
“[Make-A-Wish] really gives a child a reason to hope and to dream and to really want to live, at times when they might not want to,” Zach Coopersmith, the co-chair of Make-A-Wish’s under-4o board and partner at Leading Ridge Capital Partners, told Business Insider.
Coopersmith first came up with the idea for Toast to Wishes five years ago with a group of friends in the Hamptons.
“We were a few years out of school, we were enjoying going to clubs… and we said, ‘Hey, could we put something together for a great cause and still have a lot of fun doing it?'”
Short answer: yes.
“With so many things to do, and so many places to give, why Make-A-Wish? For me it’s simple — and that’s the mission. The mission to grant wishes and strength and joy to children battling life-threatening illnesses. And for me, the impact that Make-A-Wish has on kids and their families dealt such a tough hand is unmatched, unparalleled,” Coopersmith told the attendees.
On Thursday, New Yorkers attended the 5th annual Toast to Wishes event organised by Make-A-Wish New York's under-40 board.
29-year old Zach Coopersmith, a partner at Leading Ridge Capital Partners, started the event -- and it has grown incredibly over the last few years.
Regular tickets were $185 and VIP tickets were $300. However, certain guests opted for tables, which ranged from $3,000 to $20,000.
Some of the Make-A-Wish volunteers wore the auction pieces. Here Jacqueline Ferro, standing with Ally Blueweiss, is showing off a black diamond necklace. (Not bad.)
Food wise, there were small hors d'oeuvres being passed around all night. We were fans of the spicy tuna taquitos on the second floor.
Folks from SinglePlatform were there. Pictured here are Kenny Herman, the EVP, and Richard Lumsden, the director of strategic partnerships.
Pictured here are Jesse Aversano (Societe Generale), Justin Diaz (Citi), Brian Tarkin (Ernst & Young), Eric Gunther (Hudson Valley Hospital).
Pictured here are Warren Young (Credit Suisse), Niko Paliouras (Hudson Realty Capital), Michael Feroli (JP Morgan)
Michael Wang (right), standing with his wife Amma Wang, told us that he is planning to revolutionise the Chinese food industry.
'For me, the tangible impact that Make-A-Wish has on kids and their families dealt such a tough hand is unmatched, unparalleled,' Zach Coopersmith told the attendees early in the evening.
Over the last five years, the event has raised over $1.5 million in net proceeds. And in 2014 alone, Make-A-Wish New York has helped out 886 wish children and their families.
Coopersmith told BI that he wanted to put together an event for a great cause, but still have fun doing it.
Sunglasses with the words 'Wish NYC' were handed out later in the night. Pictured: SinglePlatform's Adam Liebman, Erica Anderman, and Lee Zucker.
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