Honorary Auction Chairs Have Special Reason for Giving

October 27, 2000

When Mike and Kathy Amalfi were asked to serve as honorary chairs for the Children's Hospital at Strong Auction Gala - to be held tomorrow, Saturday, Oct. 28 - the Webster couple quickly seized the opportunity.

The Amalfis have a long-standing relationship with the staff at Children's Hospital at Strong. It was here five years ago that their daughter, Alissa, 7, was diagnosed with a still-mysterious condition that stunted her growth.

"There's really no name for it," Mike Amalfi says. "She's very small and she has some other symptoms associated with the condition. We know there are some children in the U.S. who have one-of-a-kind diseases. We think she might be one of them."

After the Amalfis first heard the diagnosis, they sought other medical opinions.

"We saw specialists at Boston Children's Hospital, Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, the Mayo Clinic, and Johns Hopkins University, to name a few," Mike Amalfi says. "And we came back to Children's Hospital at Strong. I went to many places only to find out that the determination that was made right here at home was the correct one."

Mike and Kathy spent the summer drumming up support for the Auction Gala, to be held at the Greater Rochester International Airport at 6 p.m. Saturday Oct. 28. More than 500 people have already said they will attend.

"We're doing our best to make this the biggest and best Auction Gala ever," Mike says. "We're trying to find auction items that you can't buy anywhere else. One generous supporter has already donated a private flight on a jet."

Note: There will be valet parking for those attending the event.

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