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El Museo’s 15th Annual Gala

Ambassador John Loeb and Sharon Handler.
Photo by: ©Patrick McMullan

El Museo’s 15th Annual Gala
A Quinceanero

Narciso Rodriguez, Francisco Costa, Angel Sanchez, and Nicole Miller were among the 540 guests who danced the night away
at Cipriani 42nd Street for El Museo’s 15th Annual gala. Gala Chairmen Ruben and Isabel Toledo and Yaz and Valentin
Hernandez received the evening’s honorees, novelist Mario Vargas Llosa, Angel Collado-Schwarz and former Ambassador Paul
Cejas in the candlelight lobby. Junior chairs Jana Pasqual, Samantha Thompson, and Luisana Mendoza wore white and tiara in
honor of the gala’s quinceanero theme.
The gala had already raised over $850,000 when the museum board president Carmen Ana Unanue announced that she and the
Unanue family were contributing an additional $3 million to El Museo’s expansion campaign. El Museo Director Julian
Zugazagoitia and Chairman Tony Bechara were the first to rise from their seats to applaud her generous donation, and the entire
room followed suit with a standing ovation as her son, Andy Unanue, spoke on her behalf.
Guests included designers Maria Cornejo, Christian Cota, Agatha Ruiz de la Prada, and Fabiola Bercasa, as well as Ambassador
John Loeb, Assemblyman Adam C. Powell, Jackie Weld, Candy Pratts, Sylvana Soto-Ward, Sarah Wolfe, Whitney Wolfe and more.
El Museo del Barrio was founded in 1969, and is New York’s leading Latino cultural institution, representing the diversity of art
and culture in all of the Caribbean and Latin America. El Museo has had a significant impact on New York’s culture, and is a
major stop on Manhattan’s Museum Mile on Fifth Avenue. Currently El Museo is undergoing a $22 million-dollar facelift, which will be completed in the fall of 2009.
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