Dream Foundation Summer Dream Fashion Show

Aqualillies entertain at Dream Foundation's Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

Aqualillies entertain at Dream Foundation’s Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

Dream Foundation—the Santa Barbara-based nonprofit is the only national dream-granting organization for terminally-ill adults—recently hosted its third annual Summer Dream fundraiser to benefit Dreamers ages 18 to 40. The stylish event included a fashion show, with designs from A Tropical Affair, Calypso St. Barth, K. Frank, Lolë, Miller’s Oath, UGG and local designers Catherine Gee and Danielle Rocha of Rocha Swim.

A model at Dream Foundation's Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

A model at Dream Foundation’s Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

“Summer Dream is the perfect opportunity to introduce and educate our local community about Dream Foundation’s mission, what the future holds, and about the diverse Dreamers and Dreams that the organization serves,” says Dream Foundation’s Chief Executive Officer Kisa Heyer. “Many are surprised to learn how many Dreamers are under the age of 40 and how seemingly simple yet incredibly prolific their Dreams can be.”

A model at Dream Foundation's Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

A model at Dream Foundation’s Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

In addition to the fashion show, the fundraiser included performances by local singer/songwriter, Gabe Reali, DJ Qu1z0, and synchronized swimmers, Aqualillies.

Gabe Reali performs at Dream Foundation's Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

Gabe Reali performs at Dream Foundation’s Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

Also on the menu was decadent food and drink from Heat Culinary, Patròn Tequila, Sun Potion, Summerland Winery, Topa Topa, Rori’s Artisanal Creamery and Green Star Coffee.

Held at the home of Ursula & Pat Nesbitt, additional guests included Daryl & John Stegall, Eva Guerrand-Hermès, Mireille Noone, Jelinda DeVorzon, Michelle Ebbin, Belle & Daniel Cohen, Jim Nigro, Belle Cohen, Summer Dream emcee and KEYT Channel 3’s Meteorologist, Alan Rose, second and third annual Summer Dream Committee Chair Arlene Montesano, and Dream Foundation board members Justine Roddick, Luke Ebbin and Board Chair Kenny Slaught, among others.

Arlene Montesano (Summer Dream Event Chair), Tom Parker, Karla Blackwell and Soogie and Don Kang (Golden Sponsors) at Dream Foundation's Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

Arlene Montesano (Summer Dream Event Chair), Tom Parker, Karla Blackwell and Soogie and Don Kang (Golden Sponsors) at Dream Foundation’s Summer Dream Event, photo by Lorraine A. DarConte.

“Dream Foundation believes that everyone deserves to have their final days filled with inspiration, comfort and closure. Receiving no state or federal funding, the organization and its Dreamers rely solely on private donations. One hundred percent of the proceeds of Summer Dream will be allocated to fulfill the Dreams of terminally-ill young adults, 18-40 years old,” say the organizers.

Luke Ebbin (Dream Foundation Board Vice Chair), Michelle Ebbin, & Justine Roddick (Dream Foundation Board Member), photo by Kelly Sweda Photography.

Luke Ebbin (Dream Foundation Board Vice Chair), Michelle Ebbin, & Justine Roddick (Dream Foundation Board Member), photo by Kelly Sweda Photography.

Over the past two decades, Dream Foundation has served more than 25,000 Dreams to terminally-ill adults, and they have never turned down a qualified Dream applicant.For more information about Dream Foundation, visit DreamFoundation.org.

Leslie Dinaberg

Originally published in Santa Barbara Seasons on June 26, 2107.

Honoring Moms at Visiting Nurse & Hospice Care’s Mother’s Day Luncheon

Thomas Rollerson, courtesy VNHC

Thomas Rollerson, courtesy VNHC

Visiting Nurse & Hospice Care (VNHC) hosted its 13th Annual Mother’s Day Luncheon last week at the Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore Santa Barbara. Each year the nonprofit organization honors two mothers—one living and one in memory—and celebrates their lives and acknowledges their contributions to the community.

This year’s luncheon raised a record sum—nearly $350,000—which will directly benefit VNHC’s mission to provide high quality, comprehensive home health, hospice, and related services necessary to promote the health and well being of all community residents, including those unable to pay.

The event honored mother and local philanthropist Jill Levinson. Guests enjoyed several tributes from her husband, VNHC Board Member Neil Levinson, as well as from their children. Jill has devoted herself to many  local organizations and causes, including the Santa Barbara Children’s Museum, Crane Country Day School  and Lotusland, among many others.

Shirin Rajaee and Andrew Firestone, courtesy, VNHC

Shirin Rajaee and Andrew Firestone, courtesy, VNHC

Also honored in memory was Barbara Ward Rollerson, who passed away in 1977. Barbara is the mother of Thomas Rollerson, founder & recently-retired president of Dream Foundation. Thomas shared a video and loving reflections about his mother, who passed away at age 44, and will always be remembered for her unconditional love she had for her five children.  As a longtime supporter of VNHC, Rollerson says that the Mother’s Day Luncheon has always been his favorite event because he didn’t have a place to go on Mother’s Day.  “Being in a room with amazing mothers, staff and board members, I’ve always left here feeling like I had spent the day with my mother.”

VHNC Fashion Show, photo by Leslie Dinaberg

VHNC Fashion Show, photo by Leslie Dinaberg

Co-Chairs Jodi Fishman-Osti and Pamela Dillman Haskell welcomed almost 400 guests to the event, which also included the first-ever fashion show. Shirin Rajaee, Fashion Show Mistress of Ceremonies welcomed guests and showcased the latest spring trends from local boutiques, which included styles from Allora by Laura, Bonita, Giuliana Haute Couture, Indian Summers, Lana Marmé, Lola Boutique and Lolë.

Master of Ceremonies Andrew Firestone opened the luncheon program with a warm welcome and introduced Lynda Tanner, President & CEO of VNHC, who then recognized the many supporters and sponsors of the event, including Premier Rose Sponsors Irma and Morrie Jurkowitz and Union Bank.

Established in 1908, Visiting Nurse & Hospice Care is one of Santa Barbara’s oldest nonprofit organizations. For more information on Visiting Nurse & Hospice Care, click here or call 805/965-5555.

—Leslie Dinaberg

Originally published in Santa Barbara SEASONS on May 17, 2014.