By  on November 8, 2010

It was no wonder that Thursday’s World of Children Awards Dinner at Bergdorf Goodman was sold out, given there were six award winners including football legend Dan Marino and his wife Claire.

The Marinos were honored for supporting research, treatment and outreach programs for autistic children and children with developmental disabilities through the Dan Marino Foundation. “The biggest thing is early intervention,” said Marino, who has a 22-year-old autistic son.

Jim Gold, Neiman Marcus Group’s president of specialty retail, hosted the affair, initially from behind the bar of Bergdorf’s restaurant, insulated from the crowd but keeping watch. “Don’t eat all the nuts,” Gold chirped at one guest. “This is a charity near and dear to my heart,” said Gold. “It was founded by close friends of my family,” said Gold, referring to Harry Leibowitz and Kay Isaacson, who are married.

The other honorees were Adi Roche, who established the Chernobyl Children’s Project International to help the thousands in the Chernobyl region born with disabilities and congenital deformities as featured in the film “Chernobyl Heart”; Leonor Portela, who through her Misioneros Del Camino organization has cared for orphaned, abandoned and malnourished children of Guatemala since the 1976 earthquake that devastated the country; violin virtuoso Jourdan Urbach, who raises money for children needing neurosurgical and neurological care through benefit concerts and at age 9, founded Children Helping Children, and Danielle Gram, who founded Kids for Peace which provides opportunities to learn about different cultures, help the environment and encourage peace. Cash grants of up to $50,000 were given to the honoree’s programs for children.

“The World of Children Awards honorees are an inspiring reminder of the extraordinary difference one person can make in the lives of others,” noted actress Stephanie March, World of Children Awards’ celebrity ambassador.

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