The 18th annual gala for the Foundation for an Independent Tomorrow honored Michael J. Brown, executive director, USA, of Barrick Gold Corp. The Notte di Carnevala gala took place Oct. 10 in the Palace Ballroom at Caesars Palace.
The organization presents its Civitas Laurel Award to those who have given the full measure of their talents to benefit the community. Brown received the garland of laurel and the Civitas Laurel Medallion, duplicated by jeweler Jack Weinstein, and an oil painting by Ed Rivera.
Brown spoke about Barrick Gold being the world's largest gold mining company with operations in 12 nations. In Nevada, Barrick has 4,500 employees at mines in Elko, Eureka, White Pine, Lander, Nye and Humboldt counties.
Brown is a board member of the Clark County Public Education Foundation, Nevada Mining Association, Three Square food bank, Opportunity Village and Nevada Ballet Theatre. He is the founder of the Nevada Corporate Giving Council, an orgainzation dedicated to improving the practice of corporate philanthropy in Nevada.
Before leaving the podium, Brown presented a check for $50,000 to FIT.
The formal evening began with a reception featuring pianist Sarah Hester Ross,and butler-passed hors d'oeuvres.
Guests included Sally and Richard Jost, Juanita and David Wasserman, Judy and Jim Kropid, Patty and Richard Wright, Jewel Brooks, Mari and Thom Landers, Irais and Bob Kolesar, Denise and Bill Martin, Parvin Jacobs and Sandy Peltyn.
Andy Blumen gave the welcome. Janet Frasier Blumen, founder and CEO of FIT, spoke about the organization's 2014-2015 program year that ended on June 30. FIT provides job training, coaching and support to prepare people for employment opportunities. FIT succeeded in helping 346 clients find employment. FIT was one of 14 recipients nationwide to receive a full grant through the Department of Labor for a new program to begin by the end of this year.
A video featured well-known Southern Nevada businesspeople speaking about the accomplishments made by FIT in the past 18 years, citing the 2,367 clients served.
The band Harbor Lights played dinner music while guests enjoyed a meal that included a duet entree of braised short rib and roasted salmon.
Other guests in attendance were Wendy and Richard Plaster, Beth Barbre and John Mangan, Kris and Rob Sheridan, Karen and Garth Winkler, Julie Murray, Joyce Sherman and Jim Nelson.