Ronald McDonald House New York is proud to bring our 29th Annual Gala right to your home in support of children battling childhood cancer during Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month. This year’s gala featured a number of celebrity appearances, recognition of our amazing honorees and upbeat entertainment. We hope you enjoy!
We are proud to announce our 2021 Honorees. Thank you for your unwavering support and dedication to our mission and the families we serve.
President and Chief Executive Officer, RenaissanceRe Holdings Ltd.
Kevin J. O’Donnell is the President and CEO of RenaissanceRe, a leading property and casualty reinsurer with operations in seven countries. Mr. O’Donnell is actively involved with many industry and educational organizations and is a current Trustee of The Institutes and a Member of the Board of Overseers for St. John's University School of Risk Management, Insurance, and Actuarial Sciences. He previously served as Chair of the Global Reinsurance Forum, Chair of the Association of Bermuda Insurers and Reinsurers and Director of the Reinsurance Association of America.
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Christopher J. Swift is chairman and chief executive officer of The Hartford, a national leader in property & casualty insurance (P&C), group benefits and mutual funds, founded in 1810. He is responsible for the company’s strategy and growth, capital allocation, performance, culture and leadership. Chris was an early signatory to the CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion Pledge and serves on its Racial Equity Fellowship governing committee. He is a Catalyst CEO Champion for Change and partners with the Connecticut Treasurer’s Corporate Call to Action. Chris advocates for a public-private partnership to address the opioid crisis. In addition, he serves on the board of directors for Citizens Financial Group and the American Property Casualty Insurance Association (APCIA).
M. Steven DeCarlo serves as executive chairman of Amwins Group, Inc. Previously, he served as chief executive officer of Amwins for 17 years, leading the business through the merger of several specialty wholesalers. He has served on the Amwins Board of Directors since he joined Amwins in December 2000. In 2009, Steve was the winner of Ernst & Young LLC's prestigious Entrepreneur of the Year® award in the Carolinas for the financial services category. He is active in the insurance community and was named the National Insurance Industry Council’s Spirit of Life honoree, raising more than $2.7 million for the City of Hope to support research for life-threatening diseases.
Chief Executive Officer
Helen Arteaga is Chief Executive Officer at New York City Health + Hospitals/Elmhurst. She is the former Assistant Vice President, Queens Network and Executive Initiatives at Urban Health Plan, a network of community health centers located in three boroughs in New York City.
Chief Executive Officer
Sheldon P. McLeod is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County. He was appointed CEO in January 2018, having previously served as the Chief Operating Officer (COO) at Kings County Hospital since October 2014. As CEO, McLeod’s responsibilities include setting the strategic direction for the hospital, and providing executive oversight for the clinical, operational and financial management for the institution.
One of the best-known musicians of his generation, virtuoso pianist, singer, bandleader, educator and television personality Jon Batiste has spent his career bringing music back to where it started — with the people. Born into Louisiana’s legendarily musical Batiste family, Jon studied at Juilliard, where he established his Stay Human band by playing around New York City’s subways and in street performances he called "love riots.” He developed a fluency in jazz and popular music of all stripes, collaborating with legends from Wynton Marsalis to Prince. In 2015, Jon was named bandleader and musical director of The Late Show With Stephen Colbert.
Batiste’s latest studio album, WE ARE, was released in March 2021 to overwhelming critical acclaim including praise from New York Magazine, Entertainment Weekly and Forbes. In 2020, his music was featured in the Disney/Pixar film Soul, for which he won an Oscar, Golden Globe, BAFTA, NAACP Image Award and Critic’s Choice Award for his participation in the soundtrack alongside Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross.
Batiste has performed at the Grammys, Kennedy Center Honors, US Open and the NBA All-Star Game; been awarded the American Jazz Museum Lifetime Achievement Award; and appeared on Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list. He currently serves as the Co-Artistic Director of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem. Next, Batiste’s composing and songwriting will be featured in his large-scale, genre-melding symphonic work “American Symphony,” set to premiere at Carnegie Hall in 2021, and he has been developing a Broadway musical about the life of famed painter Jean-Michel Basquiat.
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