Mercy Foundation Hosts Fabulous “Paradiso” Gala

Miami’s biggest philanthropists gather to commemorate Mercy’s 2008 Gala

John Johnson (President & CEO of Mercy Hospital) &
Brenda Johnson, Josie Romano Brown & Dr. Mark Brown

More than 600 of Miami’s most notable philanthropists, community activists and business leaders, whimsical dancers, an auction full of fantastic pieces of artwork as well as opportunities to visit exotic destinations, and some of the most respected corporations in South Florida, all came together for a spectacular fundraising event for Mercy Hospital at the InterContinental Hotel Miami.

The Mercy Foundation’s annual gala was an amazing and beautiful success in every respect. Guests entered the fabulous cocktail reception adorned with décor to fit the theme from gorgeous tropical arrangements to perfectly sculpted ice bars. The dining room doors opened to stunning tall centerpieces filled with vibrant flowers including birds of paradise and sparkling votive candles graced the tables that filled the room.

Harve & Alesia Mogul, William D. Talbert III,
Maria Sastre, Wayne Cotton

Josie Romano Brown, president of the Mercy Foundation, greeted all in attendance and gave warm thanks for their participation in celebrating the greatest gift of all, saving lives, and the preservation of good health. Subsequent speakers included Sister Elizabeth Ann Worley who gave the blessing; Mr. John Johnson, the newly appointed President of Mercy Hospital, who underscored the pivotal role the gala plays in helping the Foundation reach its goals; and Dr. Luis Villa, gala chair, who provided the moving introduction of the night’s honoree, Mr. Harve Mogul, CEO of the United Way of Miami-Dade County, the recipient of the 2008 Monsignor Bryan O. Walsh Humanitarian Award. Mr. Mogul then spoke to the attendees about his commitment to the community and his sincere appreciation for being named this year’s award recipient by Mercy Hospital, one of this area’s most important and well-respected hospitals.

Carlos & Melisa Chantres, Richard &
Mirta Mendez, Osvaldo & Mirta Costa

Additional individuals recognized in the program included 2008 PARADISO Gala Chairs Dr. and Mrs. Luis Villa and Dr. and Mrs. Antonio L. Argiz; Gala Journal Chairs Drs. Michele Astarita and Omar Gallardo; Gala Auction Chair Sergio Barrera and the gala co-chairs and committee, who worked hard to make this a spectacular and successful event.

The program was followed by a fabulous dinner, dancing to the music of Willy Chirino, and an exciting live auction.

“Tonight’s gala was truly an event beyond our wildest dreams in terms of participation, elegance and dollars raised to help us meet our most important fundraising goals,” said Josie Romano Brown, President of Mercy Foundation. “I want to extend my sincerest thanks to this year’s gala chairs and co-chairs for making this night possible.”