Starlight Children’s Foundation had its annual Starlight Awards held on Oct. 23 in Los Angeles with a good turnout.
The foundation presented the Koz family (including siblings Dave Koz, Roberta Koz Wilson, Jeff Koz, and their late mother, Audrey Koz) was presented with the Founder Award because of their support for Starlight for more than 20 years through volunteering, donations, and other activities.
The event also presented its first Starbright World Inspiration Award to actor RJ Mitte from Breaking Bad and ABC Family’s Switched at Birth shows.
Ido Leffler, co-founder and CEO of Yoobi, received the Innovator Award as well.
CBS EcoMedia received the General H. Norman Schwarzkopf Leadership Award for its contributions to social change through media.
In comment about receiving the Founder Award, the Koz family is deeply honored. “We are honored, humbled, and inspired as a family and we want to help raise awareness about Starlight since so many people don’t know about this organization,” said the Koz family.
Also, together the three siblings presented Starlight with a check totaling $117,000 at the conclusion of the Starlight Awards event. The funds were raised through a silent auction aboard the second annual Dave Koz & Friends at Sea Alaskan cruise this past September and the sales of Koz Wines and Audrey’s Cookies/Cookies for Koz.
The Founder Award recognizes individuals and companies for contributing their time and talent by volunteering and community service to improve the community. Dave Koz is an American Grammy-nominated smooth jazz saxophonist and has been Starlight’s Global Ambassador since 1993, and is also a radio host. Dave Koz said, “I’ve gotten back way more than I could ever possibly give to Starlight.
The kids I have met through Starlight taught me the power of perseverance and positive thinking in overcoming my own challenges, and they inspire me every day to approach my life the way they approach theirs. I’ve found that investing in Starlight is investing in these amazing children.
If you can lift one spirit up with a toy, or a few minutes diversion on a Starlight Tablet or Fun Center unit, you might just be able to change the world, giving these children the wings to become the amazing vibrant human beings we know they can be.”
Businesswoman and philanthropist Roberta Koz Wilson owns her online business, Audrey’s Cookies/Cookies For a Koz, which sells homemade cookies. A portion of earnings from this business proceeds to Starlight. Jeff Koz is a Grammy-nominated musician.
Actors Joey Luthman (Modern Family); Elise Luthman (Rules of Engagement); Sierra McCormick (Disney’s A.N.T. Farm); John Stamos (Full House); and Ryan Lane (ABC Family’s Switched at Birth) were in attendance to support the event.
McCormick, 16, has been supporting Starlight for the past several years. “I try to go as much as I can,” she said, who added that her favorite pastime with Starlight children is playing video games. “I let them win. Being involved with Starlight is really rewarding because this organization really tries to reach out to families who need help.”
The 2014 Starlight Awards evening was sponsored by Spaghettini and the Dave Koz Lounge.
This event is a signature fundraising event garnering an array of celebrity supporters, philanthropists and business leaders who share a common goal of raising funds to support family-centered Starlight programs and services.
For more information about Starlight Children’s Foundation, visit www.facebook.com/StarlightChildrensFoundation; follow them by Twitter: @StarlightOnline; or by Instagram: /StarlightChildrensFoundation.