Stars of New York City real estate and finance rolled the dice for a good cause on June 12 at the 14th annual Casino Jazz Night at Cipriani 42nd. The event benefited Big Brothers Big Sisters of New York City (BBBS of NYC), the nation’s first and New York City’s largest youth mentoring organization.
Big Sister Amanda Zapp and Little Sister Ashleigh from the Cantor Fitzgerald workplace mentoring program presented awards to this year’s honorees, Jonathan Mechanic, chairman of the real estate department at Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP and Peter Riguardi, president of the New York tri-state region at Jones Lang LaSalle.
The widely-attended soiree – a favorite of the real estate industry – raised more than $1.4 million for BBBS of NYC’s mentoring programs, which currently serve more than 3,500 young people throughout the five boroughs each year.
“Casino Jazz Night is a very special event that brings together New York’s greater real estate communities for an evening of fun and fundraising,” said Paul N. Glickman, vice chairman of Jones Lang LaSalle and trustee of BBBS of NYC. “We’re pleased to see this important event grow with each year, and proud to demonstrate the real estate industry’s commitment to improving the lives of young people in this city.”
Throughout the evening, attendees took their chances with craps, blackjack, poker, roulette and other casino games, while two-time Grammy winner Melanie Fiona, a Canadian R&B singer-songwriter, wowed the crowd with incredible vocal performances, and others excited for a chance to win participated in the silent auction.
New York Knicks point guard Raymond Felton was also on hand, taking photos and mingling with attendees.
This year’s event was chaired by Tommy Craig, senior managing director of Hines; Steven M. Durels, executive vice president of SL Green Realty Corp.; Dennis Friedrich, CEO of Brookfield Office Properties; Paul N. Glickman, vice chairman of Jones Lang LaSalle; Adam R. Goldenberg, managing director of Equity Office Properties; Anthony Orso, CEO of Cantor Commercial Real Estate; and Glen Weiss, executive vice president and director of leasing at Vornado Realty Trust. Crain’s New York Business was a Platinum Sponsor for the event.
“Big Brothers Big Sisters of New York City’s mentoring programs make such an important and positive influence in the lives of young people,” said Hector Batista, Executive Director and CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of NYC. “We are grateful to our supporters in the greater real estate and finance industries. Their continued generosity helps fund our vision that all children achieve success in life.”
Big Brothers Big Sisters of New York City makes a critical investment in the futures of at-risk children. Funds raised provide a Big-Little mentoring match with the financial support it needs.