The Ladies of Charity in collaboration with Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of New York hosted the 67th Annual Cardinal’s Christmas Luncheon on December 6th raising more than $600,000 to support women and children in need whom Catholic Charities serves throughout the Archdiocese of New York.
Nearly 800 guests attended the luncheon, which was held at The Waldorf=Astoria.
Carla Harris was honored with the Christmas Angel Award, celebrating her service to those in need. Ms. Harris leads a long and distinguished career as Managing Director in the Institutional Advisory Group at Morgan Stanley Investment Management, as chair of the board of the Morgan Stanley Foundation and as a well-known philanthropist. She was named to Fortune Magazine’s list of “The Most Powerful Black Executives in Corporate America”, U.S. Bankers Top 25 Most Powerful Women in Finance (2009, 2010, 2011), Black Enterprise Magazine’s “Top 75 Most Powerful Women in Business (2010) and has received numerous other awards and distinctions.
“I’m a 25-year veteran of Wall Street; I believe in returns” she told the audience. “There is no greater return that you can receive than investing your life to serve others.”
Also an accomplished singer who recently released her third gospel CD, Ms. Harris drew on this talent to belt out a gospel rendition of the traditional “Happy Birthday” song to celebrate the birthday of Shirley Dolan, mother of Timothy Michael Cardinal Dolan, who was present in the audience.
After that, Kathleen and Dean O’Hare were honored with the Spirit of St. Nicholas Award. Mr. O’Hare is the retired Chairman and CEO of the Chubb Corporation based in Warren, New Jersey. He is also deeply involved in several philanthropic activities including serving as Co-Chair of the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City. His wife, Kathleen, also committed to philanthropic endeavors, previously served as Director of Catholic Charities in Metuchen, New Jersey.
His Eminence, Timothy Michael Cardinal Dolan, Dorothea McElduff, Archdiocesan President of the Ladies of Charity, and Monsignor Kevin Sullivan, Executive Director of Catholic Charities New York presented the awards.
“We’re honored to recognize Ms. Harris and Mr. and Mrs. O’Hare for their devotion to helping New Yorkers in need,” said Monsignor Kevin Sullivan. “Because of their service and the generosity of our supporters, Catholic Charities is able to continue helping families during the Christmas season and throughout the year.”
The event was rounded out by a host of distinguished speakers and performers. Rosanna Scotto, co-host of Good Day New York, served as the luncheon emcee. Author Mary Higgins Clark served as the event chair, Joseph E. Spinnato, President and CEO of the Hotel Association of New York City, Inc. served as corporate chair, and philanthropist Anna Murdoch-Mann served as honorary chair. Metropolitan Opera mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton sang traditional Christmas carols as did students from the Mt. Carmel-Holy Rosary School Chorus.
Cardinal Dolan brought home the holiday spirit by narrating the Christmas story from the Gospel of St. Luke as students at Saint John Chrysostom School performed the Christmas tableau.