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FRIENDS OF PRENTICE | Nearly $600,000 Raised at First-Ever Virtual Gala Benefitting Women’s Health


Friends of Prentice (FOP), a non-profit organization working in partnership with Northwestern Medicine Prentice Women’s Hospital to fund innovative and leading-edge research benefitting the lives of women, raised nearly $600,000 at its annual fundraising benefit, themed Still Together, At Home. Due to COVID-19, this is the first year that the gala was held virtually on Saturday, October 24, 2020. Shifting the gala online is a shining example of how non-profits are adapting to the current climate in order to still raise critical funds. The dollars raised during the virtual gala will go towards awarding doctors and clinicians grants needed to continue their life saving research across all areas of women’s health.

Mike Borders, Friends of Prentice Board President, along with Executive Director Kristen Field, co-hosted the event with special appearances from gala co-chairs Donna Socol and Shannon Flavin. Close to 1,000 guests tuned in from the comfort of their own homes and “hosted” a virtual or socially distanced table.

This year’s gala featured one of a kind online auctions, music from DJ Megan Taylor and The Dr. Bombay band as well as a cocktail hour led by two-time James Beard award-winner and mixologist Belinda Chang. Emmy-award winning television host Val Warner served as emcee for the event that encouraged guests to ‘come together’ virtually to honor the healthcare community while raising critical funds for medical research. In addition, the frontline health heroes, clinicians and physicians who have received grants from Friends of Prentice shared highlights of their research and the positive impact the funding has had on the research conducted within their respective areas of women’s health.

"We are so humbled and grateful for everyone who showed support to FOP by attending our virtual gala,” said Mike Borders. “This year’s gala definitely looked and felt different, but it was a successful night of not only celebrating all our healthcare heroes, but also celebrating the mission of Friends of Prentice – to provide crucial seed money to brilliant clinicians and researchers who are shaping the future of women’s health care.”

Since 1983, Friends of Prentice has raised over $20M and awarded grants to more than 100 researchers and clinical programs. FOP’s annual grants initiative has funded projects in the areas of COVID-19 research, gynecologic oncology, mental health, heart disease, disparities in access to care, diabetes, HIV, uterine and pelvic medicine, genetic biomarker research, home health care outreach and more. Funds raised during the gala go directly to research, education, and patient care programs at Prentice.

To make a donation to FOP or learn more about the organization, please visit

About Friends of Prentice

Friends of Prentice is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization that harnesses the creativity and resources of a diverse and engaged volunteer board, sharing a common passion for women’s health. Working in partnership with Northwestern Medicine Prentice Women’s Hospital, the organization advances the quality of care provided to women by investing in emerging technologies and medical advancements including groundbreaking research, clinical care programs and advanced educational opportunities. Friends of Prentice nurtures a proud legacy of philanthropy and volunteerism as it strives to improve health and wellness throughout the arc of a woman’s life. To date, Friends of Prentice has raised over $20 million to support research, education and patient care programs at Prentice Women’s Hospital.

PHOTO CAPTION: Friends of Prentice Executive Director Kristen Field (left) and Friends of Prentice Board President Michael Borders (right) raise a glass to kick-off their annual gala which was held on Saturday, October 24. This was the first year the annual gala was held virtually online due to COVID-19. The gala raised close to $600,000 which will in turn be awarded to clinicians and researchers with grants at Northwestern Prentice Women’s Hospital to conduct leading-edge research across all areas of women’s health.






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