The Cristian Rivera Foundation Donates $100,000 to Dr. Mark Souweidane of Weill Cornell Medical Center at Third Annual Gala


Thanks to overwhelming ticket sales, live and silent auction purchases, and donations associated with this year’s Third Annual Cristian Rivera Foundation Gala, John “Gungie” Rivera was proud to present with a check for $100,000 at the star-studded event.

John was joined on stage by all of the Cristian Rivera Foundation committee members in attendance – including former Bronx Borough President and mayoral candidate Fernando Ferrer, celebrity chef Alex Garcia, actress and founder of the Puerto Rican Traveling Theatre Miriam Colon, celebrity chef Ricardo Cardona, legendary producer John “Jellybean” Benitez, former New York Knicks all-star Anthony Mason, La Mega’s JI Starr, interior decorator Solange Osorio and professional body builder Victor Martinez – or this historic moment.

The event was held at the newly re-launched Copacabana Supper Club and Event Space in Times Square and hosted by Saturday Night Live star Kenan Thompson and award-winning actor Luis Guzman, both committee members of the Cristian Rivera Foundation. It featured a 30-minute band set by legendary pop/Latin singer Brenda K. Starr and food provided by Celebrity Chefs Ricardo Cardona and Alex Garcia. Among the night’s esteemed guests were Danielle Staub of The Real Housewives of New Jersey, comedian Ruperto Vanderpool, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., New York City Comptroller John Liu, Dangerous Minds actor Renaly Santiago and, of course, Dr. Souweidane, the Director of the Weill Cornell Pediatric Brain and Spine Center who took this opportunity to announce that his one-of-a-kind novel delivery system has gotten approval from the FDA and clinical trials will start in a few weeks.

You can still help the Cristian Rivera Foundation raise money for Dr. Souweidane’s exciting and important work. Visit to make a donation, or to purchase signature foundation t-shirts or one of our three styles of wristbands. All money raised goes directly to Dr. Souweidane and his team, and every donation, big or small, helps us get closer to our goal of curing DIPG forever. For photos of the Third Annual Cristian Rivera Foundation Gala, visit or

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