Heroes and Hope Gala Press Release




Chicago, IL (November 4, 2017) A Safe Haven Foundation celebrated its 3rd Annual Gala, Heroes and Hope on Saturday, November 4, 2017 at the Cinespace Film Studio Ballroom.  The event attracted over 300 supporters to help raise awareness and support for our nation’s heroes, which included A Safe Haven’s Board Members, elected officials, special guest sponsors and donors, and volunteers, all of which made the 2017 Heroes and Hope a huge success with a crowded standing room only section.

This year, A Safe Haven honored two very important trailblazers: Nick Mirkopoulos, the founder of Cinespace Film Studio as the Posthumous Humanitarian Hero Award recipient, and Alexander Pissios, Cinespace Chief Executive Officer, as the Business Hero of the Year recipient for their leadership in the Community.

“We extend our deepest thanks and appreciation to our sponsors, supporters, speakers, elected officials, board members, advisory board members, and staff for making the event a huge success! This year we have raised over $400,000 which will be used to provide services and assistance to our military veterans,” said Neli Vazquez Rowland, President of A Safe Haven Foundation.

Rob Johnson of CBS, a Television Personality extraordinaire, served as emcee for the evening; Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner and First Lady, Diana Rauner were on hand to address the attendees the State of Illinois Director of Veterans Affairs, Erica Jeffries served at the keynote speaker and for the second year, Franciscan Father Charles ‘Chuck’ Faso blessed the evening with a message of hope and invocation.

Chicago PD Actor and Comedic Talent LaRoyce Hawkins provided entertainment for the evening with joy and laughter, and added a message of love for humanity, especially the attending Veterans.  The event was topped off with an inspiring video created by Phillip Koch which captured the spirit of the honorees.

This year’s theme “Heroes and Hope” honors their dedication to community and are a prime example of all of our partnerships that help A Safe Haven achieve significant milestones, specifically on behalf of the military veterans we serve. As the largest provider of transitional, supportive, and affordable housing for military veterans in the State of Illinois, over 1,000 military veterans last year depended on A Safe Haven to help them get back on their feet.