Pro Athletes and Personalities Bring their A-Game to the Orthopaedic Foundation Gala

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Always an elegant venue for events on a grand scale, the St. Regis New York played host to the Orthopaedic Foundation’s 15th Anniversary Gala on Thursday, November 21. Guests and attendees included a number of current and retired professional athletes and media personalities along with many other noteworthy individuals. All were gathered to recognize the work of the Orthopaedic Foundation and to honor distinguished individuals for outstanding leadership, athleticism and philanthropy.

Richard Salgado & Dennis Seidenberg ( Ex NY Islander)

The evening began on a festive note as the evening’s honorees and guests were available to chat with attendees and meet with the press over cocktails and hors d’oeuvres while perusing a selection of sports memorabilia and collectible items available through a live and silent auction conducted via smart phone text messaging with proceeds benefiting the Foundation.

Richard Salgado & Anzhelika Steen Olsen ( CEO of The Sher Women’s Empowerment Group)

Dinner and the main event followed in the main ballroom where guests were Guests enjoyed a decadent meal prepared with exclusive wine pairings from The 1 Wine company. Guests were entertained by the comedy of Second City Works. Richard “Big Daddy” Salgado, President and CEO of Coastal Advisors LLC Insurance Consultants, charmed the crowd as master of ceremonies introducing the evening’s honorees, he being one of them. Beyond Coastal Advisors, Salgado founded both the Big Daddy Celebrity Golf Tournament and the Big Daddy Youth Football Camp, and has served as a Fox Sports Super Bowl Corespondent.

Other honorees included:

Kevin Weekes, retired NHL goaltender (12 seasons), analyst for the NHL Network and ESPN, and Founder/CEO of NO5HOLE Apparel.

Kevin Weekes, Dr.  Kevin Plancher, Rich Salgado

Bernard Hopkins, former champion boxer with multiple middle and light heavyweight titles, entrepreneur, philanthropist and youth mentor.

Charlie Gasparino & Bernard Hopkins

Chefs Dino Gatto, Executive Chef at Rao’s New York in East Harlem, and Andrew Whitney, Executive Chef/ Owner of Dell ‘anima who together prepared the four-course meal on which the Gala’s guests dined.

Victor Muro, President and CEO of Integrated Financial Concepts who has served on several youth-related charity boards and has been recognized for his leadership in insurance and financial services. He is also a member of the National Life Group General Agent Hall of Fame.

The Orthopaedic Foundation promotes, supports, develops and encourages research and education concerning minimally invasive orthopaedic surgery and advancements in musculoskeletal diseases. Additionally, the Foundation seeks discover new modalities for the treatment of orthopaedic injuries and musculoskeletal disease, to promote injury prevention, and to explore minimally invasive treatments that guarantee shorter recovery time and faster return to daily activities.

“It was such a pleasure and honor to be the Orthopaedic Foundation Gala’s MC and honoree,” said Salgado. “I look forward to continuing to do great work for the organization and advancing their mission.”

“The 15th Anniversary Gala allowed us to raise significant funds to continue our cutting-edge research for sports injuries and musculoskeletal diseases such as Arthritis,” said Dr. Kevin Plancher, Founder of the Orthopaedic Foundation. “We thank all the honorees and guests for coming out  to celebrate with us and for making our night a huge success.”

For more information about the Orthopaedic Foundation, visit: www.ofals.org


Jack Raplee is a Queens native with over 20 years of journalistic experience covering industries as varied as entertainment, manufacturing, engineering and consumer electronics as well as hard news. Apart from writing, he has enjoyed additional exposure in radio work, standup comedy and modeling. While his career trajectory has brought him far and wide, living in places like Nassau, Bahamas; Sungnam, Korea; and Jackson, Mississippi he always seems to end up in his native NYC. Jack is currently working on a yet-to-be-titled book providing his unique perspective on his native Queens as seen from the table of a local diner.

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