Stormy weather and a Chicago Blackhawks playoff game didn’t deter more than 600 supporters from attending The DIFFA/Chicago Believe 2015 Gala: The Imagine Ball. This 27th annual fundraiser for Design Industries Foundation Fighting AIDS/Chicago was held June 13 at Navy Pier. Co-chaired by Jeremy Davis, Mary Jo Fasan and Ron Lei- serowitz, the black tie affair raised nearly $500,000 to help fund Chicago-area service agencies dedicated to assist- ing men, women and children living with HIV/AIDS. Held in the Grand Ballroom, the program was a celebration of the progress made in the fight against the HIV epidemic.
Val Warner, host of ABC-7’s Windy City LIVE!, emceed the evening and introduced a video that reported more than $40 million has been granted to AIDS organizations.
Keynote speaker Dr. John Flaherty, an HIV specialist and the director of the Infectious Diseases Fellowship Training Program at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, spoke about promising updates in research and the program’s impor- tance. “The graduates of DIFFA/Chicago’s fellowship pro- gram are making a difference as HIV clinical specialists, public health experts and research scientists in Chicago and throughout the world.”