KaDee Strickland and Mick Foley Headline DC Event for RAINN
More than 150 supporters, volunteers and Congressional leaders joined actress KaDee Strickland and wrestling legend Mick Foley last night to celebrate RAINN’s work helping 1.5 million survivors of sexual violence through the National Sexual Assault Hotlines.
Scott Berkowitz, Carolyn Maloney & Ted Poe
Strickland and Foley were presented with RAINN’s 2010 Hope Award at the Washington, DC, gala, in honor of their work to educate the public about sexual assault prevention and recovery and for their volunteer work for RAINN. Also winning the Hope Award was Shonda Rhimes, the creator of ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice.
The event’s co-chairs, and RAINN board members, Cybele Daley, Katherine Miller and Tracy Sefl, welcomed guests with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres at the stylish offices of Navigators Global in Washington’s Penn Quarter.
Present to lend their support to RAINN’s work were Reps. Ted Poe (R-TX) and Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), Congressional leaders in the fight against sexual violence. Reps. Maloney and Poe are the lead sponsors of the SAFER Act, which will help eliminate the backlog of untested DNA evidence from thousands of unsolved rape cases. Congress is expected to take up the SAFER Act next year.
RAINN founder Scott Berkowitz praised the hard work of Daley, Sefl and Miller, as well as Chelsea Bowers, RAINN’s development director, noting that it was RAINN’s most successful DC fundraiser ever. He added, “We’re so pleased that KaDee and Mick could join us, and we’re excited to honor their work, as well as Shonda’s, on behalf of RAINN and sexual assault victims. Millions of people have learned about the National Sexual Assault Hotlines thanks to their help.”
KaDee Strickland received the Hope Award for her powerful and remarkably realistic performance on ABC’s hit show Private Practice. In a storyline that started this month, Strickland’s character, Charlotte, survives a brutal rape in her workplace. Strickland spent a great deal of time preparing for the role, working closely with RAINN’s staff and members of the organization’s speakers bureau. Strickland also devotes her time to volunteer for RAINN, helping to educate the public and meeting with members of Congress to lobby for passage of the SAFER Act.
Strickland also accepted an award on behalf of Shonda Rhimes, the show’s creator and writer. Rhimes and Strickland worked closely together to create an amazingly honest portrayal of rape and its devastating aftermath. The show also communicated the importance of reporting the crime to the police, and featured a PSA directing viewers to the National Sexual Assault Hotline.
Mick Foley, a world-champion wrestler and best-selling author, received the Hope Award both for his generosity — he donated half the advance from his new book, Countdown to Lockdown, to RAINN — and his extensive volunteer work for RAINN. In addition to educating American about RAINN’s work through appearances on The Daily Show and elsewhere, Foley has spent hundreds of hours helping victims as a volunteer on the National Sexual Assault Online Hotline. The Hope Award is not the only award Foley has won this fall: Jon Stewart recently presented Foley with his Award for Reasonableness, for his work on behalf of RAINN.