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Black Tie International:
The Mills-Peninsula Debutante Ball

Debutante Betsy Micelli with her escort Jordan Jadallah at the 2010 Mills Peninsula Debutante Ball.  Photo by:  Jack Hutcheson

Debutante Betsy Micelli with her escort Jordan Jadallah at the 2010 Mills Peninsula Debutante Ball.  Photo by:  Jack Hutcheson


The Mills-Peninsula Debutante Ball returns on

 February 11, 2012 at the Kohl Mansion, Burlingame

The event benefits the Oncology Center of Excellence at the

Dorothy E. Schneider Cancer Center at Mills Health Center


The 2012 Mills-Peninsula Debutante Ball (formerly known as the Thanksgiving Cotillion and Debutante Ball) was announced today featuring nine young debutantes from the mid-Peninsula who will be presented at this year’s Mills-Peninsula Debutante Ball.  The event will take place on Saturday, February 11, 2012 at the beautiful Kohl Mansion, located on the grounds of Mercy High School in Burlingame, California. The Debutante Ball, a bi-annual event, was last held in 2010 and raised over $200,000 for the State of the Art Medical Technologies at the new Mills-Peninsula Medical Center which opened in May 2011.          

“The Debutante Ball has made a wonderful impact on our ability to provide excellent healthcare for our community.  This year’s event will support the purchase of a PET/CT Scanner for our Oncology Center of Excellence.  By ensuring the latest technologies for surgery and radiation therapy, we hope to make a marked improvement on cancer survivorship in San Mateo County,” said John Loder, Foundation president. 

            The idea for the Debutante ball began four years ago with a group of dynamic philanthropic women discussing their various associations with the hospital and how they could help build a younger community of donors and develop a program that helps support the self-esteem of young women on the Peninsula.  “Young women are under so much pressure to be on the honor roll, to be star athletes, and to get perfect SAT scores,” noted Mrs. Melanie Ryan, Chairperson of the event.  “The Thanksgiving Cotillion is a great way to celebrate everything these young ladies have achieved. It is also a wonderful way for them to give back to their community by supporting their local hospital.”  This year’s honorary chairs are local philanthropists, Mrs. Peggy Bort Jones and Sheila O’Connor Burns.

 “A cotillion is a creative way to make a difference,” added Committee Member Sheila McWilliams. “We celebrate the achievements of outstanding young ladies in the community and build a bridge to the Hospital Foundation.”

            “I wanted to be a part of this year’s Ball because it’s a great way to give back to my community while supporting our local hospital,” noted Debutante Maile Kennedy Pringle.  “I’m helping to raise money for our local hospital, the place my two sisters were born, and the place we go to in case of an emergency. My great-grandfather was a doctor and I know that he is smiling down at me now,” added Debutante Kristina Marie Cullinane.  Many of the debutantes went to school together and for some, they are the first in their family to take part in a cotillion.   The concept of giving is not new to these young ladies– some have a long history of volunteering and a family tradition of philanthropy.  Most girls have been involved with numerous charities including the National Charity League, Inc., Peninsula Family Service, Shelter Network, Second Harvest and of course, Mills-Peninsula hospital, among other charities. 

All nine girls also have a connection to Mills-Peninsula, some being born there or having parents or grandparents who have been treated at the hospital. Nicole Schulz, Vivien Wu, Katherine (Kate) Atkeson, Molly Kate Barry, Catherine Drysdale, Maile Kennedy Pringle, Kristina Cullinane, Lauren Corey and Laura Westbrook are the nine outstanding young ladies being presented this year. 

            Mills-Peninsula Health Services, a not-for-profit corporation with approximately 2,500 employees, operates two community health facilities with a total of 403 inpatient beds. The Peninsula Medical Center in Burlingame is an acute-care facility. Mills Health Center in San Mateo provides a wide range of outpatient services, including surgery, rehabilitation and diagnostics. It also is home to Mills-Peninsula's Women’s Center. Mills-Peninsula Health Services is an affiliate of Sutter Health, one of the largest not-for-profit health organizations in Northern California.  Mills Health Center, founded by prominent Californian Elizabeth Mills Reid, opened in 1908 in San Mateo with six beds. Peninsula Medical Center, developed through creation of a public hospital district, opened its doors four miles north in Burlingame in 1954.

Tickets to the Mills-Peninsula Debutante Ball are $350.00 per adult and $150 for young adults (guests under 21).  For invitation information, please contact the Foundation Office at 650-696-5990 or log on to


Joyce Brooks

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