Puttin' on the Ritz

The Sterling Heights Area Community Foundation is planning to hold its ninth annual signature Gala, "Puttin’ on the Ritz," at Villa Penna in Sterling Heights, on Friday, November 19, 2021, from 6 to 11 p.m.

This year, the Foundation is honoring ALL Macomb and Oakland County health care workers at Ascension Macomb Oakland Hospital, Beaumont Hospital - Troy, Henry Ford Macomb Hospitals and McLaren Macomb Hospital with the 2021 Mayor Richard J. Notte Civic Service Leadership Award, for providing extraordinary, selfless, courageous and tireless health care to all community residents in the face of the unprecedented deadly COVID-19 crisis.

 This award recognizes and honors thousands of Macomb and Oakland County resident health care professionals, from diverse backgrounds, working together, courageously providing health care service to the entire community to combat the deadliest disease of our lifetime. “These thousands of hometown health care heroes we recognize are our neighbors, friends and acquaintances who represent the very best in our communities caring for everyone,” said Karl G. Oskoian, Sterling Heights Area Community Foundation Executive Director and President Emeritus. “We are very proud of and thankful for each of these outstanding and dedicated health care professionals, and this award lets them know that.”

"Puttin' on the Ritz" is a countywide, black-tie optional Gala which began in 2013 to recognize exemplary leaders in Sterling Heights and Macomb County who demonstrate outstanding civic leadership and community support. The Gala features a sit-down dinner, premium bar, live band, a great selection of auction items and more.

The Foundation held its first Gala to honor long-time Sterling Heights Mayor Richard J. Notte for his 20-year career of exemplary service to the citizens of Sterling Heights. Mayor Notte's Public Service endowment fund, managed by the SHACF, was funded with proceeds from this event.

In 2014, the Foundation recognized the men and women in Macomb County's Defense Industry and Macomb's veterans by recognizing the largest VFW organization in Macomb County and the state of Michigan and a living Tuskegee Airman. With proceeds from this event, we funded a Veteran's Day endowment to ensure the City would always have funding to hold its annual Veterans Day Ceremony.

With the passing of Mayor Notte in 2015, the Foundation established an annual Civic Service Leadership Award in his name, to honor his legacy by recognizing outstanding community leaders who share his traits and values and to encourage others to extraordinary civic leadership. Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel was the inaugural recipient. In 2016, Mayor Notte's award recipient was Barbara Rossmann, President and CEO, Henry Ford Macomb Hospitals. In 2017, Mayor Notte's award went to Congressman Sander Levin. Our 2018 award went to Candice Miller, Macomb County Public Works Commissioner. In 2019, we honored Michigan Supreme Court Chief Justice Pro-Tem, David F. Viviano. Our 2020 award went to Dr. Christine Johns, Superintendent, Utica Community Schools.

The 2021 Ritz 9 Gala Honorary Co-Chairs are Michael C. Taylor, Mayor of Sterling Heights; Dr. Gary Druskovich, President, Ascension Macomb Oakland Hospital; Dr. James Lynch, President, Beaumont Hospital, Troy; Barbara W. Rossmann, President and CEO, Henry Ford Macomb Hospitals; Tom Brisse, President and CEO, McLaren Macomb Hospital. Event Co-Chairs Dr. Martin J. Brown, President of Sterling Heights Area Community Foundation and President of the Macomb County Chiropractic Association; and Foundation Executive Director and President Emeritus Karl G. Oskoian.

Should COVID health and safety concerns require the live Gala to become a Virtual Gala, a pre-recorded video of the intended live Gala Program will be available on the city of Sterling Heights’ website as well as the Foundation’s and the City’s social media sites for viewing by City residents, City and County government leadership, Gala Sponsors, guests intending to attend the Gala and other supporters, beginning on November 19, 2021.

The Foundation is looking forward to its November 19, 2021 Gala and is excited about bringing Macomb County and the city of Sterling Heights together to celebrate all our health care workers have done to provide the best health care possible, especially during the COVID-19 crisis. 

For more information, please contact Executive Director Karl Oskoian at oskoiank@sbcglobal.net.