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LOS ANGELES, California (January 12, 2012) – On Friday, ABC’s Emmy-award winning “Modern Family” star Rico Rodriguez and Kate del Castillo, the star of Telemundo’s record-breaking mini-series “La Reina del Sur,” were honored at the 2nd annual St. Jude Estrellas por la Vida (Stars for Life) gala for their continued support and dedication to helping children in the Los Angeles area as well as around the world.
The event, held at Club Nokia at LA Live, benefited St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, the nation’s top children’s cancer hospital. More than 225 guests enjoyed an exquisite dinner and silent auction, as well as live performances by renowned jazz trumpet master Arturo Sandoval and rock-pop singer Gustavo Galindo. The gala also welcomed local philanthropists, community leaders and St. Jude patients who walked the red carpet alongside some of today’s top Latin and main-stream celebrities such as director Tom Shadyac, Christian Chavez, Eduardo Yañez, Jessica Maldonado, Stephanie Himonidis and Gloria Carmona. Riani Rodriguez, Rico’s older sister, also served as one of the award presenters during the event. Los Angeles on-air talent Stephanie Himonidis “La Chiquibaby” from Univision’s La Nueva 101.9 FM co-hosted the event alongside news anchor and producer Gloria Carmona from Univision Television Group.
Rico Rodriguez was honored for his work as a young philanthropist and supporter of pediatric healthcare and the local community. At the end of last year, Rodriguez met St. Jude patient Carson and went on a fun holiday shopping spree for the kids of St. Jude. “St. Jude is a very special hospital and I am really honored to receive this award. Meeting St. Jude patients who are my age and battling cancer reminds me of who the true heroes are here tonight,” said Rodriguez.
Kate del Castillo was a co-honoree of the evening and was recognized for her international humanitarian efforts and her accomplishments across various segments of the entertainment industry. “It was an honor to receive this wonderful recognition from St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, an organization dedicated to saving the lives of so many children,” said del Castillo. “Last year, I had the opportunity to attend the inaugural Estrellas por la Vida gala and it was great to see how the Hispanic community in Los Angeles came together in support of such an important cause like childhood cancer."
St. Jude has made great discoveries in how to treat deadly childhood diseases like cancer, saving the lives of kids around the world. Doctors send some of their toughest cases and sickest patients to St. Jude. St. Jude relies primarily on the public’s generosity to support its lifesaving mission. It costs $1.6 million to operate the hospital every day and more than 70 percent of that funding comes from the public through events like Estrellas por la Vida. Through its International Outreach Program (IOP), St. Jude also has partner clinics in 14 countries including Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Venezuela, Ecuador, Chile and Brazil. The IOP aims to improve the survival rates of children with catastrophic illnesses worldwide, through the sharing of knowledge, technology and organizational skills. The Gala was sponsored by Adriana’s Insurance, Ace Beverage, American Airlines, AEG, Alaska Airlines, Avianca-Taca Airlines, Barcardi USA, Beringer Vineyards, Coca-Cola, FAMSA, Glendale Infiniti, Glendale Nissan, Iberoamericana Travel, Indie Printing, Luxe City Center Hotel, Neutrogena, Tadin Herb & Tea Co., Tequila Don Pilar and Tropicana Las Vegas. Media sponsors included Univision Communications, Telemundo and Mun2.
Special thanks to the 2011 sponsors: