FAI seeks cure to life-threatening food allergies
The Food Allergy Initiative of Chicago’s 2nd annual benefit took place on Oct. 24 at the River East Arts Center. The sold-out event attracted over 550 guests and raised more than $1.1 million.
Event co-chairs were Denise and David Bunning, Suzanne and David Friedland, Susie and Chris Hultquist and Eun Lee and David Calicchia. Ginger Zee of NBC 5 Chicago was the mistress of ceremonies. Food For Thought provided the Asian-inspired menu. The funds raised at the event will benefit research and community education programs aimed at effectively treating and raising awareness of life-threatening food allergies.
Michelle and Darren Anixter of Highland Park, parents of children with severe food allergies, were honored for their dedicated advocacy on behalf of the food-allergic community.
Additionally, FAI Chicago’s 2009 Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Charlie Trotter, chef and philanthropist, for his commitment to culinary excellence and his sensitivity to the needs of food-allergic patrons.
Hugh Sampson, M.D, of Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, N.Y., an internationally recognized expert on food allergies, gave an update on the progress of research.
Founded in 1998, FAI is a national, non-profit organization dedicated to finding a cure for life-threatening food allergies. Headquartered in New York City, FAI is the largest private source of funding for food allergy research in the United States. In addition to funding research worldwide, FAI supports educational programs and public policy initiatives to create safer environments for the estimated 12 million Americans affected by food allergies.
FAI Chicago was founded in 2007 by a group of dedicated local parents who wanted to heighten food allergy awareness while raising funds to find a cure. Every FAI Chicago member has a child with a life-threatening food allergy, a life-threatening food allergy, or is a doctor who treats food-allergic patients.
In addition to raising funds for research, FAI Chicago is committed to training and educating schools, day care centers and camps throughout the Chicago area on how to ensure the safety of food-allergic children while in their care. To this end, FAI Chicago supports community education programs at Children’s Memorial Hospital. Visit www.faiusa.org/