Noa Kattler Kupetz
Nearly 500 people gathered in Stephen S. Wise Temple’s Zeldin Hershenson Hall on Sunday, November 6, for the fourth annual Fashion with Compassion event. The show, entirely produced by Milken students, was a success again, raising a large amount of money (exact number still being calculated) for the Eliya organization.
Eliya’s mission is to provide services for visually impaired children, aiming to teach them skills that will allow them to enroll and succeed in public education. By choosing Eliya, co-chairs Deborah Halimi ’12, Shani Gilboa ’12 and Ally Torkan ’11 continued the fashion show’s ongoing involvement with organizations that benefit Israel and youth.
Before the runway show, Jerry Krautman, Executive Director of Eliya-USA, presented Halimi, Gilboa and Torkan with Eliya’s “Visionary Award”, presented yearly to a recipient who shows great support.
“It was a true honor to be seen as such an impactful event to [Eliya],” Halimi said.
55 Milken students modeled and around another 50 students volunteered to serve on committees that produced, organized and coordinated the show.
“The preparation process was intense, but so much fun and an amazing experience,” Ofri Aharon ’12, co-chair of the model committee, said.
Before and after the fashion show vendors set up boutiques, donating a percentage of the sales to Eliya. The event fittingly took place on Mitzvah Day, and those who had gathered at Stephen S. Wise for different Mitzvah Day events were welcome to shop in the boutiques as well.
The co-chairs decided to experiment with an alternative advertising route through luring in viewers by hosting a celebrity guest, Kyle Richards, of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. Richards, a Milken mom, closed the show by walking down the runway with her daughter Alexia Umansky ’14.
From selecting models, soliciting clothing vendors and setting up the stage, multiple layers of organization and work went into the show, and all played out harmoniously. Next year, Halimi and Gilboa will have graduated, and will hand down the reigns to Torkan and other undecided members.
“I couldn’t be more proud of the event this year,” Halimi said. “Despite all of the stressful moments leading up to the event, I can truly say that I am happy with everything about how the show turned out to be.”