Whitney E. Houston Legacy Foundation Celebrates with Legacy of Love Gala on What Would Have Been Her 60th Birthday
The Estate of Whitney E. Houston and Primary Wave Music, along with Sony Corporation of America as the premium partner, presented the Legacy of Love Gala on Wednesday, August 9 at the elegant St. Regis Hotel in Atlanta, Georgia. Celebrities, friends, family, and supporters from near and far gathered to celebrate what would have been Whitney’s 60th Birthday and the important work and mission of the foundation.
“Last night’s celebration of Whitney was beautiful and breathtaking,” says Pat Houston, the executor and president of The Estate of Whitney E. Houston. “We are honored that so many people traveled to Atlanta to be with us for this momentous and monumental occasion. Whitney would have been honored by the love and support of everyone. More importantly, she would have been proud of the outstanding work demonstrated by our young people.”
The gala was hosted by Emmy Award-winning news anchor and broadcaster Karyn Greer, with special guests Harvey Mason, Jr., president of The Recording Academy, who shared words about some of his music and recording experiences with Whitney; multiple Grammy Award-winning producer and musician Narada Michael Walden talked about his historic productions that helped launched her early career into superstardom; two-time Emmy Award-winning producer Rickey Minor, who served as Whitney’s longtime musical director for nearly three decades shared stories about her various high-profile television appearances and worldwide tours.
Atlanta notables who were in attendance included CeeLo Green, Blanco Brown, Terri J. Vaughn, Trina Braxton, and Angel Taylor, among other civic and political figures.
This year’s Honorary Chair Clive Davis presented a moving virtual tribute to his beloved friend and superstar. Sixteen-time Grammy Award-winning producer David Foster, who was on tour, also presented a virtual tribute to his longtime collaborator and friend.
Musical performances included six-time Grammy Award-winning recording artist and songwriter BeBe Winans, who performed Houston’s “Greatest Love of All” and “Father in Heaven;” Gospel music songstress and songwriter Kim Burrell performed Whitney’s “I Believe In You and Me” and “I Love The Lord,” both from the Preacher’s Wife: Original Soundtrack Album, and Whitney’s brother, Gary, who toured and recorded with his beloved sister for more than three decades sang a birthday tribute and performed one of his favorite songs, “You Were Love,” that she also recorded on the Preacher’s Wife album.
The annual fundraiser included a silent auction which featured more than 40 curated auction packages. Some of the top packages included 1) Legendary Hitmaker Clive Davis Virtual Meeting, 2) Dolly Parton’s Lavender Dress, 3) Whitney Houston Black Helen Yarmak Fur Coast, 4) Whitney Houston Personal White Guliana Teso Fur Coast, 5) FAO Schwarz’s Houston Family Heirloom Rocking Horse, and 6) Marc Bower Black Jeweled Colored Stain Dress, which are still available for bidding on www.charitybuzz.com.
Other leading auction packages included Julius Erving II Basketball and Jersey package; and Whitney at 60, which included sixty special curated gifts; were among many other packages from Broadway to music to fashion to other one-of-kind originals and keepsakes.
In 2020, The Whitney E. Houston Legacy Foundation was formed to continue the mission and important work with today’s youth through program initiatives and services that reflect the values and needs of our young people. The Foundation also serves as a source of empowerment to help rebuild, repair, and restore the self-esteem of our youth and assist them in living productive lives.
The Foundation presented to its 2023 grant recipient, the Living Live Foundation’s “Lighting the Way Youth Mentor” program initiative. The Foundation also provided three scholarships to three students studying the arts at three historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) including Morgan State University (Baltimore, MD), Jackson State University (Jackson, MS), and North Carolina Central University (Durham, NC).
The Foundation was thrilled to receive a generous donation from Scent Beauty which also included a direct donation from 225 Perfumania and Fragrance Outlet stores, who donated $5 from every bottle sold of the Whitney Houston Fragrance.
The auction and gifting partners include African Ancestry, Atlanta Food and Wine Festival, Atlanta United FC, Aurelia Vand, Bouvery CV’s Chocolate Liqueur, Camus Cognac, Cheryl R. Riley, Chicago Musical-National Artists Management, Cocotique, Crabby Shack, Denene Millner Books, Dolly Parton, Dr. Julius Erving II (Dr. J), Ecotools, Elle Vet, Eminence Expressions Cultural Cards, Gaither Music, Harlem – OPOLY, Hollywood Beauty Awards, House of Knipschildt’s Artisan Chocolates, I Know Skincare, Joan Baker and Rudy Gaskins of SOVAS, Kazaisu Rosé, Keffa Coffee, KYVA Foods, LLHOMD Beauty Care, Mama’s One Sauce, Marion P Candles, Marc Bryan-Brown, Moulin Rouge! The Musical-MRB Musical LLC, Neiman Marcus, NilaBags.com, OSEA Skincare, Perryscope Productions, Piedmont Driving Club, Primary Wave Music, Randee St. Nicholas, Rhino Entertainment, Rickey Minor, Shaklee’s Body Care, Shawn Rhea, Sheila Gary Collection, SIX: The Musical, SONY 360 Audio, SONY Legacy, The Capital Grille, The Estate of Whitney E. Houston, Vadham India, VanTrece Hospitality Group, Waterfold, Weldon Owen Books, WEN® Hair and Body Care Products by Chaz Dean.
For more information on Whitney Houston visit www.WhitneyHouston.com.