Article courtesy of Herald-Tribune By Gayle Guynup Social editor | Posted Jun 10, 2018 at 8:51 AM | Updated Jun 10, 2018 at 8:51 AM • Photos: Courtesy of Wendy Dewhurst Clark
The theme was “Motown Magic” at this year’s second annual We Care Manatee Luncheon and Fashion Show, held at the Manatee Performing Arts Center. We Care Manatee, now in its 19th year, provides free, quality medical care and referral services to low income, uninsured and under-insured adult residents of Manatee County.
Among the 100-plus guests seen at the event were Executive Director Victoria Kasdan, honorary chairperson Jeannie Slater, event chair Kobee Masiello, Susie Bowie, Jeanie Kirkpatrick, Melissa Howard, Sandra Collazo, Jeanette Planes, Adell Erozer, Jodi Allen, Trudy Moon, Christine Wengerd, Nancy Haller, Dorothy Williams, JoJo Smith, Samuel Gamero, Annie Breitinger and Ira Kasdan, among others.
After perusing a large raffle selection and silent auction, guests were welcomed by Masiello and Victoria Kasdan, who noted that in 20 years, the organization’s mission has not changed. With the help of its network of 80 volunteer physicians, partnerships with community hospitals and alliances with other medical facilities, thousands of residents have received medical care from qualified providers who they can trust – in the process saving taxpayers more than $7 million.
She then presented Bowes Imaging Center with We Care’s annual Community Service Award, thanking them “for their dedication to helping those in need.“
Following lunch, it was time for the fashion show, set to some of Motown’s many iconic hits (more than 180 number one hits in all), “songs that changed the nation,” Kasdan said.
Models Kathleen Cucci, Mary Jo Hixon-Cohen, Susan Harrigan, Erna Giles Smith, Veronica Thames, Diana Rutland and Manatee County Commissioner Carol Whitmore made their way down the fashion runway, to the music of The Temptations, Diana Ross and The Supremes, The Jackson Five, Lionel Ritchey, The Four Tops and many more. Summer fashions were provided by two area retailers, Bows and Arrows Boutique and By the Sea Boutique.
Last year alone, nearly 80 percent of the 1,100 low-income, uninsured people requesting We Care Services, received free, quality medical care valued at more than $1.1 million. Those services included primary care, physician referrals, pharmaceutical assistance and breast health and wellness services.
The “fans’ of Motown music come out at We Care Manatee’s fashion show and luncheon.