BY: Foziah Muneer, Photo/Journalist for World Liberty TV
SportsBall 2019, the 25th Annual Black Tie & Sneakers Gala benefiting the Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health (AAIUH), took place on Wednesday, October 2nd, at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in New York City.
This year’s gala was co-hosted for the first time by Ruschell Boone, reporter and anchor for Spectrum News NY1, and Les Trent, senior correspondent for Inside Edition.
SportsBall 2019 honored Stan Smith, tennis legend and President of the International Tennis Hall of Fame; Cheryl Wills, Emmy-winning anchor for Spectrum NY1 Live at Ten, and host of In Focus with Cheryl Wills; Guy Vickers, President of the PVH Foundation; and Sydney C. Butts, MD, Vice Chair, Department of Otolaryngology, SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University. Dr. Marilyn A. Fraser, CEO of the Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health, presided over the gala.
VIPs in attendance, in addition to the co-hosts and honorees, included: David Dinkins, former Mayor of New York City and past SportsBall honoree; Brett Wright, Co-Founder and CEO of Uptown Media Ventures, and Board Chair of the Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health; Wayne J. Riley, President SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University; Yvonna Kopacz Wright, Actress, The Village, Blue Bloods.
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, and Guiding Light; Mike Woods, Meteorologist and Reporter on FOX 5’s Good Day New York, People Magazine’s Sexiest Anchor Alive, and SportsBall 2018 honoree; Steve Lacy, Anchor Fox 5 News at 5:00 p.m. & 10:00 p.m.; Tamsen Fadal, 12-time Emmy winning Anchor, PIX11 News, and host of Broadway Profiles; Kori Chambers, PIX 11 News Anchor; Mr. G, Meteorologist, PIX 11 News; Ines Rosales, Morning Traffic Anchor on FOX 5 Good Day New York; Javier Gomez, Artist & Designer, Maison&Objet Ambassador, featured in BVLGARI, FENDI Casa, Roche-Bobois, People Magazine’s Sexiest Artist Alive; and Kym Hampton (WNBA), retired professional basketball player.
About SportsBall: SportsBall 2019 is a celebration with a purpose. Each year, the Institute honors individuals and organizations that are making significant contributions to urban communities in the areas of health, education, medical research, community service, and philanthropy. The funds raised at SportsBall support the Institute’s innovative community health education programs and research initiatives.
Arthur Ashe founded the Institute in 1992, just two months before his death from AIDS, in response to the disproportionate amount of illness and death in urban communities from preventable diseases. Arthur knew that many of these diseases, such as diabetes and hypertension, were the result of inadequate health care delivery systems, late detection, and insufficient health education.
About the Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health: In 1992, Arthur Ashe established the Institute in partnership with SUNY Downstate, moved by the institution’s long history of serving immigrants and low-income Brooklyn residents, as well as its staff and faculty’s research.
The Arthur Ashe Institute for Urban Health, located in multi-ethnic Brooklyn, collaborates with community members to design and conduct neighborhood-based interventions that address health conditions that disproportionately affect minorities.
Recognizing the complexity of the economic and social determinants of health, the Institute partners with a wide variety of grassroots and institutional organizations to provide after-school science enrichment, outreach initiatives in trusted venues, and research and advocacy. Community Health Empowerment guides and unifies all of the Institute’s work.