“Love Lives On” 19th Annual Steve Chase Awards Gala at the Palm Springs Convention Center

Co-chair Barbara Keller and Jerry Keller ~photo Pat Krause
Story and photos by Pat Krause
Story and photos by Pat Krause

“Love Lives On” was this years theme for the 19th Annual Steve Chase Awards Gala at the Palm Springs Convention Center on Saturday, Feb. 9th. The event was sold out with over 1800 guests attending. Desert AIDS Project in Palm Springs is the recipient of all monies raised thru ticket sales, silent auctions and donations. Integrated Wealth Management was the Presenting Sponsor again this year.

Co-chairs Barbara Keller and Jim Casey welcomed the guests for coming again this year. They gave guests a moment of surprise when they announced they were stepping down as Co-chairs. Everyone gave a sigh of relief when they said they would continue for 2 more years.The event has raised almost 5 million dollars in the last 5 years. They were hoping to break a new record which they succeeded to do with over 1.5 million raised at this year’s gala.

The opening performance was “Dream On” by Live It Up Performers with Azhia and Joey Newkirk. The next singer was Matthew Morrison from Glee followed by the award winning singer, Melissa Etheridge. A return visit by Queen Latifa was next followed by So You Think You Can Dance Dancers and Megan Hilty and Stephanie Block. Jesse Tyler Ferguson from Modern Family was the Guest Host. Scott Nevins was the auctioneer for the Live Auction.

In between all the entertainment the Awards were presented to deserving individuals. Philanthopist Annette Bloch was awarded the 100 Women Award. Partners in Activism was given to Jake Glaser and Arts and Activision award was given to Mario Lopez. Singer Lorna Luft received the Community Service Award and the Partners for Life Award went to Julian deCiurcio.

RoboBank presented a LOVE LOUNGE after party with a DJ and costumed Dancers. Free Drinks, Appetizers and Cotton Candy were passed around. Lighted hats, feather boas and lighted glasses were given out to a few lucky guests. The feel-good feeling from the nights entertainment was brought into the dance area as guests were enjoying a really good time.

Desert AIDs Project provides health care and support to those people and their families living with HIV/AIDS in the Coachella Valley. DAP offers assistance with food, housing, counseling, case management and social services. They also have many locations that offer free confidential HIV testing.