Scene and Heard: American Red Cross of the Chesapeake Region's Hometown Heroes event

Pictured: Bill Paterakis, Dan Whelan and Frank Miller Dan Whelan watched several dozen folks mingle in the mezzanine at the Modell Performing Arts Center at the Lyric for the Hometown Heroes VIP reception. The annual American Red Cross of the Chesapeake Region event recognizes community heroes. As the event's chair, Whelan marveled at how much it changed over the years. "What's really nice is that it started 14 years ago as a breakfast with 30 people. Now, we're in the evening at the Lyric with 700," Whelan said. "It's always good to see the community come out and honor people who have done things for them philanthropically," said Ken Aneckstein, DLA Piper partner. Frank Miller, American Red Cross of the Chesapeake Region executive director, greeted Lifetime Achievement Award winner and keynote speaker Dr. Benjamin Carson, Johns Hopkins Hospital Pediatric Neurosurgery director. Pam Malester, retired deputy director for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Civil Rights, and Deb Kennedy, former president of the Junior League of Baltimore, represented the Junior League, which was receiving the Community Impact Award on its 100th anniversary. Folks like Ed St. John, St. John Properties chairman, Joseph Haskins Jr., Harbor Bank CEO, and his wife, Rhonda Overby, Camera Ready Inc. CEO, Laura Faibish, Annapolis-based attorney, and her husband, Kostas Alexakis, York Capital senior adviser, had come to support the Paterakis family, which received the Generations of Giving Award. "I personally don't like recognition. I just like to do the right thing," said Bill Paterakis, Northeast Foods president/CEO, who served on the Red Cross board for a dozen years. He attended the event with brothers Steve Paterakis, Schmidt Baking Co. president, and Chuck Paterakis, H&S Bakery vice president, as well as several of their children. Jay Ringgold, of the Baltimore County Fire Department, was honored with the Homeland Heroes Award for developing the Neighbors Helping Neighbors program. "I'm still stunned. You do something you like to do and you don't expect to be recognized with an award," Ringgold said. "I'm excited for him. This is his day," said his wife, Christine Ringgold, Towson Orthopedics secretary. Reactions like that were exactly what made the evening such a stand-out for Robby Burch, board member. "It's a great, feel-good event," he said. -- Sloane Brown
Photo by Karen Jackson, Special to The Baltimore Sun
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