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Health Happenings—Five Acres Event To Foster Care Awareness, And More

Members of Five Acres’ young professionals volunteer group, The Alliance, invite the community to their Tacos & Wine mixer on March 21, 2019 in Pasadena to raise awareness for foster children in San Gabriel Valley.
The Venice Family Clinic will honor Ivy Kagan Bierman and Russel Tyner at its Silver Circle Gala. The Blind Children's Center's Tom Sullivan Celebrity Golf Classic at the Riviera Country Club will recognize Sullivan, founder of the 25-year-old major fundraiser.

Posted Friday, March 8, 2019 - 1:28 pm

Five Acres To Host ‘Tacos And Wine’ Mixer For Foster Care Awareness

Five Acres, a leading child and family services nonprofit, will host its first “Tacos and Wine” mixer from 7-9 p.m., Thursday, March 21 at SWCA Environmental Consultants, 51 W Dayton St., in Old Town Pasadena to raise awareness for foster youth.

The casual open-to-the public event will include food, drink, door prizes, a silent auction and the chance to network with other individuals interested in supporting children in foster care.

The mixer was created by the Alliance, Five Acres’ new young professionals volunteer group. The group hosts activities for the 80 foster children living at Five Acres’ campus in Altadena, but hopes the night will bring broader exposure to the more than 20,000 children in L.A .without permanent families.

“I joined the Alliance because I love children and plan to foster-adopt myself. I also wanted to help foster kids as much as possible and feel that Five Acres is one of the best organizations to do so,” said Mandi Martinez, president of the Alliance. “This mixer is not a fundraiser, but an ideal way for young professionals to forge meaningful connections and make an impact in the community.”

Attendees at the event will also have the chance to hear from those who have experienced the system.

“As a former foster child at Five Acres, I wanted to give back to the organization that helped bring relief and stability to my family thirty years ago,” said LaTanya Spann, founding member of the Alliance. “If you find it within your heart to help kids who are in their situations through no fault of their own, we encourage you to attend.”

Mixer tickets are available for a $25 per person donation, or two tickets for $40 at

For more information on the event or volunteering at Five Acres, contact Emily Peters at, 626-773-3809.

Venice Family Clinic To Honor Ivy Kagan Bierman, Russel Tyner At Silver Circle Gala

Venice Family Clinic will host its 37th annual Silver Circle gala on Monday, March 25 at The Beverly Wilshire Hotel where Ivy Kagan Bierman will receive the organization’s  Humanitarian Award for her commitment to empowering women and minorities and advocating for greater equity for women and minorities in the workplace.

Kagan Bierman serves as a partner at Loeb & Loeb LLP, the vice chair of civil rights for the Anti-Defamation League, and is a member of the Legal, Legislative and Policy Committee on Sexual Harassment and Gender Parity, and the Safety Committee, for Time’s Up. 

Bierman’s other nonprofit activities include being the acting president and a founder of GreenLight Women, an entertainment industry women’s alliance that promotes diversity and champions women 40 and over.

“We admire Ivy for her relentless work to advance civil rights and promote equity for women and minorities – all values that we share at Venice Family Clinic,” said Elizabeth Benson Forer, Venice Family Clinic CEO/executive directo. “We are proud to salute her and celebrate the achievements of women advancing social justice in pursuit of women’s health and safety.”

Russel Tyner, AIA, NCARB, president, principal architect and co-founder, Houston/Tyner Architects, will be honored  with with the Clinic’s Irma Colen Leadership Award for his volunteer work with Venice Family Clinic over the past 34 years.

Tyner began volunteering with Venice Family Clinic in 1985 as a project architect for Widom Wein Cohen where he led the design of the two-story expansion of the Clinic’s original Rose Avenue site in Venice. After founding his current practice, Houston/Tyner, in 1988 with his partner, Gary Houston, Tyner continued volunteering with Venice Family Clinic and joined the board of directors in 1990. 

Over the past three decades, Tyner has has been the driving force behind Houston/Tyner’s continued efforts to assist the Venice Family Clinic with long-range planning, master planning and creating innovative workspaces at clinical facilities.

Said Forer: “Russel has been a true partner in the growth of Venice Family Clinic over the years. He has designed state-of-the-art clinics that have allowed us to provide high quality health care in safe and welcoming spaces. We’re honored to celebrate his achievements with the Irma Colen Leadership Award.”

The gala, sponsored by UCLA Health and the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, will begin with a cocktail reception at 6 p.m., followed by dinner at 7 p.m., and will feature live performances from Grammy-nominated artists, Carmen Bradford and Shelly Berg.
The gala will raise more than $1.5 million this year to help Venice Family Clinic provide health care to thousands of low-income and uninsured families and individuals.
For more information,  contact Naveena Ponnusamy at 310-664-7932 or email
Providence Saint John’s Health Center Sets Forums On Heart Health, Stroke
Providence Saint John’s Health Center will hold free educational forums on heart health and stroke from 2-4 p.m., Tuesday, March 26 and from 6:30-8:30 p.m., Wednesday, March 27 at the Santa Monica Public Library, 601 Santa Monica Blvd., Santa Monica.
The leading causes of disability in the U.S., cardiovascular disease and stroke, affect more than three million people and remain the No. 1 cause of death in the U.S. The good news is that with increased knowledge and commitment to positive change, it may be possible to modify people’s rick for cardiovascular disease, enhance their health and extend their life. Providence Saint John’s is an EMS certified Comprehensive Stroke Center and certified by The Joint Commission as a Thrombectomy Center.
Dr. John Robertson, executive medical director of Surgical Services at Providence Saint John’s Health Center, will moderate the forums which will feature:
• On Tuesday, Dr. Michael Broukhim, consultative and interventional cardiologist with The Pacific Heart Institute, A Saint John’s Physician Partners Medical Group, explaining cardiometabolic risk.
Dr. Jason Tarpley, interventional neurologist and medical director of the Stroke Center at PSJHC speaking about clot-causing strokes and who is at risk.
Dr. Raymond C. Lee, medical director of cardiac surgery, PSJHC and assistant professor of clinical surgery, division of cardiothoracic surgery, USC’s Keck School of Medicine, discussing how technology is making a difference in heart valve disease and heart failure treatment.
• On Wednesday, Dr. Richard F. Wright, cardiologist with The Pacific Heart Institute, A Saint John’s Physician Partners Medical Group, explaining how the healthy heart works, heart failure and how it is managed.
Dr. Serena A. van der Zee, cardiac electrophysiologist with The Pacific Heart Institute, discussing skipped beats, slow and racing hearts, abnormal rhythms including atrial fibrillation.
Dr. Lee will “repeat” the Tuesday technology and heart disease lecture and Dr. Tarpley will speak about cerebral aneurysms and hemorrhagic stroke.
Each panel will conclude with a Q&A session. To make the required reservations, call 310-829-8453.
Blind Children’s Center’s Tom Sullivan Tournament Turns 25
On Monday June 10, 2019, 124 golfers will take to the fairway of the Riviera Country Club to raise funds for the Blind Children’s Center, now in its 80th year of service.

The Blind Children’s Center is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization founded in 1938 that serves approximately 100 children who are blind or visually impaired and provides an array of support services for more than 350 family members.

In its 25th year, the Tom Sullivan Blind Children’s Center Celebrity Golf Classic continues to be a success. Since its beginnings, the tournament has grossed more than a total of four million. This year, the Center is choosing to honor Sullivan and his dedicated support to the Center over the last four decades. Sullivan has worked as an author, composer, motivational speake and singer, as well as an actor, director and producer. Sullivan also sang the national anthem of the United States, at Super Bowl X.

Celebrity guests are expected to be in attendance, many of whom are Sullivan’s friends from the entertainment industry.

Sponsorships and reservations are still available. Visit for more details.

For more information about the event, contact Samantha Fong at 323.664.2153, ext. 2339, or via email at 

Visit the Center online to learn more about its services for children in Los Angeles facing blindness and severe visual impairments:


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