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Ackerman Institute for the Family Slates 11th Annual Moving Families Forward Gala

Ackerman Institute for the Family Slates 11th Annual Moving Families Forward Gala

Lois Braverman, President & CEO, Ackerman Institute for the Family announced today the honorees and host for the 11th annual Moving Families Forward gala to take place at the JW Marriott Essex House on Monday, October 23rd in New York City.

Luis Alberto Urrea, Poet, Novelist, Essayist, will be honored with the Moving Families Forward Award.

GenSpring Family Offices, David J. Herritt, Managing Director Northeast Region, will be honored with the Ackerman Corporate Partner Award.

Tamsen Fadal, eight-time Emmy-winning PIX 11 News Anchor, will return to host the evening for the fourth consecutive year. The event benefits the vital programs and ongoing services for children and families at the Ackerman Institute for the Family.

"I support the Ackerman Institute for the Family because Ackerman therapists know that when one member of the family is in distress, all members of the family suffer." says Tamsen Fadal. "Ackerman believes that family members who truly feel understood by each other develop a kind of resilience that allows them to cope effectively with the complexities of this turbulent world."

"We are thrilled that Tamsen Fadal is returning to host our biggest fundraiser of the year," says Lois Braverman, President & CEO, Ackerman Institute for the Family. "By generously giving of her time and talent to help lead our event to success speaks volumes about her commitment to family mental health. I am grateful to Tamsen for lending her support and celebrity in this way."

Luis Alberto Urrea is the best-selling author of 17 books, including The Devil's Highway and The Hummingbird's Daughter. A finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and winner of a 2017 American Academy of Arts and Letters Award, Urrea has also won the Lannan Literary Award, the Pacific Rim Kiriyama Prize, an American Book Award, the Christopher Award and an Edgar Award. The Water Museum, a collection of short stories, was a finalist for the 2016 PEN/Faulkner award for fiction and his novel Into the Beautiful North is a current selection of the NEA's Big Read program. His books have been selected by more than 60 different cities and colleges for community reads programs and he is much in demand as a speaker, lecturer and teacher. His newest novel, The House of Broken Angels, will be released by Little, Brown in March 2018. Born in Tijuana to a Mexican father and American mother, Urrea is most recognized as a border writer, though he says, "I am more interested in bridges, not walls." He lives outside of Chicago and is a Distinguished Professor of creative writing at the University of Illinois-Chicago.

"We are elated that prolific author and speaker, Luis Alberto Urrea, has agreed to accept the Ackerman Institute's Moving Families Forward Award for his ability to connect his own dual-cultural life narratives to explore the greater themes of love, loss, and triumph, relating to family and the immigration experience," says Lois Braverman. "Luis is an exceptional writer with an uncanny ability to carry the story and uniqueness of each of his characters' over-the-border story - whether recent or centuries old-and to bring along the values and beliefs that eventually survive in his characters and their family relationships. We all carry our family history and backgrounds, that's what allows us to move forward, and that's what Luis expresses in his writings so well. We are delighted to honor Luis this year."

GenSpring Family Offices provides a service that is pro-active about bringing families together, who hold financially complex relationships, through thoughtful planning and strong core beliefs.

Accepting the Ackerman Institute's Moving Families Forward Award is GenSpring's Managing Director, David J. Herritt, who oversees all aspects of the client experience in the Northeast region.

"We are delighted to honor GenSpring Family Offices for its understanding of the many complexities of family relationships in the context of financial management," says Lois Braverman. "It recognizes that strengthening the non-financial facets of family interactions enhances family cohesion across generations, a core belief of the Ackerman Institute. GenSpring advisors possess the skills and deep understanding of family dynamics as they work with families from around the country. We are proud of our partnership and delighted to be able to honor Genspring in this way."

Moving Families Forward Gala Co-Chairs are GReg Rogers and Deborah Werner, and serving as Honorary Chairs are Martha Fling and Alice K. Netter. This year's Gala Planning Committee members are Vicky Kahn, Gisella Lemos and Leslie Roberts. They are supporters of the Ackerman Institute for the Family, and its work on behalf of the well-being of children and families of our communities.

Founded in 1960, the Ackerman Institute for the Family is one of the premier institutions for family therapy and one of the best-known and most highly regarded training facilities for family therapists in the United States. The Institute serves families from all walks of life at all stages of family life.

To purchase tickets to the Moving Families Forward Gala call 914-579-1000, email:, or go online at

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