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Giving back was the order of the day for the 730 attendees at Cosmetic Executive Women’s 2011 Beauty of Giving Luncheon Dec. 9 at the Waldorf-Astoria. The event, sponsored this year by Self Magazine, helped raise $583,000 for the CEW Foundation organization, Cancer and Careers, which provides support for working people with cancer.

“One of the dearest champions that we have is no longer here and that’s Evelyn Lauder,” said CEW president Carlotta Jacobson, who opened the program. “I’m really at a loss for words to describe really how I feel about this extraordinary woman. I really loved her. She was awesome. I admired her. She was a rock star and she was actually one of a kind. When we do have a cure for breast cancer, we can all thank Evelyn.”

The event, which celebrated Cancer and Careers’ 10th anniversary, also honored Lauder and her lifelong crusade to raise awareness and funding for cancer research.

Lord & Taylor’s general merchandise manager, Barbara Zinn-Moore, whose mother was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1991, was one of the speakers to share her memories of Lauder.

“I called William Lauder not knowing that that one call would truly change everything,” said Zinn-Moore. “When I spoke to my parents that evening my mom told me they’d just spoken to an angel from heaven. That angel was Evelyn Lauder. Evelyn helped my parents and I through this very difficult journey. Her spirit will forever be remembered.”

Zinn-Moore, who is herself in remission from non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, said Lauder also reached out to her during her own battle with the disease. 

“Evelyn gave me her total support and guidance,” said Zinn-Moore. “She called me almost every other Sunday night for updates and to check in. It would have been a much more difficult journey without that very same angel from heaven who helped my mom 19 years before.”

After the speakers, a spirited live auction offering luxurious vacation packages was held, helping to raise additional funds at the event, which generated $481,000 through ticket, table and auction sales, and an additional $102,000 through sponsorship pledges.

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