BOOKS & BRANDEIS: 25 years of literary events

Five notable authors enchanted guests at a festive cocktail party, as well as at a book and author luncheon the next day. Both major literary events were sponsored by the Brandeis National Committee, Phoenix Chapter.

On March 15 a spacious and dazzling home overlooking the sloping hills of Paradise Valley provided the ideal backdrop for a sleek fundraising cocktail party and major literary event. Co-chaired by members Sue Karp and Janice Lipman, the event provided approximately 125 guests with the rare opportunity to socialize with top-selling authors Anita Diamant, Greg Iles, Cary Elwes, Chris Tomlinson and Garth Stein, who were delighted to sign books as well. The Sunday night soiree, followed by an exclusive dinner, was a prelude to the organization’s Book and Author Luncheon the following day at the Phoenician, where attendees not only enjoyed a sumptuous lunch but also heard authors discuss their books. The luncheon was chaired by Merrill Kalman and Carol Kern, who created the event in 1991.

Celebrating the silver anniversary of these two literary happenings, funds raised went to support the organization’s “Sustaining the Mind” campaign, a charity that that empowers research for neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and Lou Gehrig’s, as well as other neurological conditions such as autism and epilepsy.

“We had a $3 million goal, and we are almost there,” says National Executive Committee President Barbara Sanders. She notes that the Phoenix event is the biggest chapter fundraiser. “Last year we raised over $55,000 with the cocktail party and luncheon. This is a premier event; we think of it as a win-win. We give members study groups and amazing events like this, and our members give us donations to help Brandeis.”

BNC chapters both benefit from and support Brandeis University, a renowned private research university in Massachusetts.

For more information on the local Brandeis chapter, contact Merrill Kalman at mskbflo@aol.com or Carol Kern at: cak571@aol.com.

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