Jane Krakowski to Receive Spirit of Life Award, 5/14

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Tony Award winning actress Jane Krakowski, fashion industry leader Susan Sokol and philanthropist Ann Levine will receive The Spirit of Life® Award at City of Hope's annual Spring luncheon on Monday, May 14, at The Plaza Hotel. City of Hope's East End Chapter/JeAnne Kaye League will present the three distinguished women with its top philanthropic honor in recognition of their professional achievements, charitable contributions and personal commitment to the fight against women's cancers.

The luncheon and J. Mendel fashion show will benefit lifesaving research, treatment and education programs at City of Hope. For information, contact Michele DiVeterano at 800-344-8169, mdiveterano@coh.org.

"I am honored to be recognized by an organization that improves the quality of life for patients with cancer and their families," said Krakowski. "City of Hope is leading the way in research, treatment and education in order that more lives can be saved. I believe in City of Hope's mission and encourage everyone to support this outstanding institution."

"My personal experience of fighting and surviving breast cancer could not have happened without the extraordinary advances in scientific research and medical treatment at institutions like City of Hope," said Sokol. "I am grateful to be acknowledged by an organization that embodies hope and provides compassionate care to patients and their families."

"I am honored to be recognized by an organization that I have supported for so many years," said Levine. "I continue to be amazed by the dedication and generosity I have seen in City of Hope physicians, researchers, staff and volunteers - all of whom work tirelessly every day to create a future free from the devastations of cancer and other life-threatening diseases."

Tony Award winner and three-time Emmy nominee Krakowski currently stars as "Jenna Maloney" in NBC's Emmy Award winning series 30 Rock. Krakowski, along with the 30 Rock cast, won the 2009 Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series. She has been recognized by the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences for the past three consecutive years, receiving Emmy nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series. Krakowski received the 2003 Tony Award for her stunning portrayal of "Carla" in the Broadway musical Nine, opposite Antonio Banderas. Her performance in Nine also earned her the Drama Desk Award and the Outer Critic's Award.

Sokol is widely considered one of the fashion industry's most distinguished and highly-regarded top executives. The current president and chief operating officer of J. Mendel, Sokol has served in executive positions for high-profile brands Vera Wang, Michael Kors, Pegasus Apparel Group/Leiber Group, Donna Karan International and Calvin Klein Inc. She has repeatedly taken companies to their next level of success.

Throughout her extraordinary career in the apparel and accessory industry, Sokol has demonstrated compassion and support for a number of local and national charities. She is a dedicated advocate for women's health and research into women's cancers.

Levine has dedicated herself to charitable endeavors since leaving a successful teaching career in the New York City public schools. She has volunteered with City of Hope's East End Chapter/JeAnne Kaye League for almost two decades, serving as co-president for most of those years. In recognition of her exceptional service, she received the Tabak Award at City of Hope's National Convention in 1997. Levine is also vice-president of the auxiliary at NYU Langone Medical Center, where she has chaired many fundraising events.

She received the Hospital Auxiliant Volunteer Achievement Award from United Hospital Fund for her work with NYU. Levine is a life member of both the National Council of Jewish Women and the Brandeis National Committee.

"We're proud to recognize these extraordinary women for their professional leadership and commitment to raising awareness for women's cancers," said Lisa Kaye Fuld, co-president, East End Chapter/JeAnne Kaye League. "Their achievements and personal stories provide hope and inspiration to women who are fighting cancer around the world."

Scientists with City of Hope's Women's Cancers Program are investigating the biology of breast, ovarian and endometrial cancers as well as interventions that could reduce cancer risk for all women. Researchers are identifying new treatments and prevention methods. They are also examining issues that affect women with cancer and their families, such as spirituality, the emotional impact of cancer on caregivers, and other quality-of-life issues. To learn more about City of Hope's Women's Cancers Program, visit http://womenscancers.cityofhope.org.

Lancome is this year's gold event sponsor. Past honorees of The Spirit of Life Award include Katie Couric, Hoda Kotb, Fran Drescher, Kelly Ripa, Cindy Crawford, Paula Zahn, Mary Tyler Moore, Robin Roberts, Kay Unger, Laura Geller and Elayne "Honey" Cook.

J. Mendel is a fifth generation luxury brand established on the principles of high quality, style, and craftsmanship. Applying his unique skills and design aesthetic, Gilles Mendel transformed the company from a luxury fur atelier into a full-fledged fashion house with the launch of its ready-to-wear collection in 2002. His penchant for maintaining the highest standards while manipulating luxury fabrics in unexpected ways has attracted top-tier clients who appreciate his timeless, cutting-edge, and exquisitely produced fashions. In recognition of his achievements in women's fashion, Mendel was inducted into the Council of Fashion Designers of America in 2003, and received the prestigious Smithsonian Cooper Hewitt National Design Award in 2011.

City of Hope is a leading research, treatment and education center for cancer, diabetes and other life-threatening diseases. Designated as a comprehensive cancer center, the highest honor bestowed by the National Cancer Institute, and a founding member of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, City of Hope's research and treatment protocols advance care throughout the nation. City of Hope is based in Southern California, and is ranked as one of "America's Best Hospitals" in cancer by U.S. News & World Report. Founded in 1913, City of Hope is a pioneer in the fields of bone marrow transplantation and genetics. For more information, visit www.cityofhope.org or follow City of Hope on facebook, twitter, youtube or flickr.

Photo Credit: Walter McBride/WM Photos

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