The Ambassador's Farewell Dinner & GABA Charitable Auction
Media Release – for immediate distribution…
The Ambassador’s Farewell
& GABA Charitable Auction 2013
A Fundraiser for the GABA Charitable
Proudly supported by the Equal Employment Opportunities Trust
Sunday 20th October, from
The Great Room, The Langham Hotel
The Gay Auckland Business Association’s annual charity event will be twice as fabulous this year as we bid a fond farewell to New Zealand’s favourite out and proud American Ambassador.
Ambassador David Huebner and his spouse Dr Duane McWaine are regrettably nearing the end of their tenure as America’s representatives to New Zealand.
Although most Ambassadors depart after three years, Huebner and McWaine have been with us for almost four years now, and have redefined the relationship between our two countries.
As President Obama’s first openly gay Ambassadorial appointee, David Huebner has been a great inspiration to New Zealand’s Rainbow Community and a good friend.
GABA President Skot Barnett says that this year's extra special event is an opportunity for the LGBTI community to honour Huebner’s service as Ambassador and his great contribution to expanding and strengthening the US/NZ relationship.
“It's with a mixture of sadness, much love and respect that GABA prepares to farewell His Excellency David Huebner and Dr Duane McWaine at our premier charity event ahead of their return to the United States,” says Barnett.
“The Ambassador has made a real impact within New Zealand's LGBTI community and has been a great friend, a fabulous guest and a generous contributor to GABA. Please join us as we give a heartfelt send-off to this very special couple before they depart our shores.”
Auckland’s most prominent business people, companies and supporters in the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender communities will gather in The Langham’s glittering Great Room on Sunday 20th October for this glamorous charity occasion.
The annual dinner and auction is the primary fundraiser for the GABA Charitable Trust, which has given out community grants and scholarships totalling well over $200,000 throughout the last decade.
Alistair Wilkinson heads an all-star line-up
This year’s illustrious Master of Ceremonies has been confirmed as two-time Qantas Media Award winning journalist and broadcaster, Alistair Wilkinson, who is presently on screens and behind the scenes as News Director at SKY News.
“Ambassador Huebner’s story is inspiring to me, and it’s a privilege to be asked to take part in his farewell,” says Wilkinson. “Having openly gay people in the most senior influencing roles sends a powerful message to society as a whole.”
The evening’s entertainment will include star-spangled tributes from a stellar line-up of local performers, including recently crowned Mr Gay World, Chris Olwage; Pacific drag icons, Buckwheat, Tess Tickle and Venus Mantrapp; torch song jazz singer, Briar Ross; and New Zealand’s Queen of Burlesque, Miss Leda Petit. Back again as GABA Auctioneer is Michelle Maitland from George Walkers Auctions.
In addition to live entertainment, special guest speakers and the charity auction, the black-tie-optional occasion will include champagne on arrival and a superb, three-course, silver service dinner.
GABA Charitable Trust looks to set new fundraising record
Last year’s event was a record-breaking success, with the charity auction’s largest ever fundraising haul of $30,000 for the GABA Charitable Trust to distribute back to the community.
Top grossing items in 2012 were $1,650 for a two-week stay at a fabulous Bali villa (donated by Glenn Sims); $1,500 for a stunning glitter screenprint by New Zealand artist Reuben Paterson (donated by the artist); and $1,350 for a four-course dinner at Camperdown, the official residence of the American Ambassador (donated by Ambassador David Huebner & Dr Duane McWaine).
“The auction is our main fundraiser for the important work of the GABA Charitable Trust,” says Trust Chair Gresham Bradley. “For many years, the Trust has helped members of our community to achieve their goals. Our tertiary scholarships have helped young men and women attend their first year of studies, and last year we opened our Pride Grants to assist groups to participate in the new Auckland Pride Festival and Parade.”
For a second year, the fundraiser is produced with the support of the Equal Employment Opportunities (EEO) Trust, an organisation which encourages diversity by promoting the recruitment and development of people on the basis of merit and generates awareness of the business benefits and rewards of an inclusive workplace.
GABA is also grateful for the ongoing support of the AUT Business School, JX Live, Poof Bar, L.Y.C, Express magazine, GayNZ.com, George Walkers and The Langham.
“The need has never been greater,” says Bradley. “We ask those who support our programmes to do three things – donate, attend and enjoy this spectacular event!”
GABA is currently seeking the donation of auction items. Donating to the GABA Charitable Auction is a fun and philanthropic way to support and strengthen New Zealand’s LGBTI communities.
To donate an auction item for this year’s charity fundraiser, please contact Event Manager Julian Cook, before Friday 11 October, by emailing: email@example.com.
Ticketing and Event Information:
Where: The Great
Room, The Langham Hotel
83 Symonds Street, Grafton, Auckland
Sunday 20 October 2013
Doors open at 4.30pm; Dinner and Auction commence at 6pm
After-Party from 10pm at Poof Bar (212 Ponsonby Road)
Tickets are $135 per person, which includes top quality company and live entertainment, a three-course, silver service dinner and a complementary glass of champagne on arrival, all as part of the LGBTI charity fundraiser of the year!
A group booking rate of $125 per person is available for tables of 10.
To secure tickets, simply email firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange payment by credit card, or direct credit.
are also available to purchase in person at the following
Poof Bar, The Women’s Bookshop, Eagle Bar, Marcello’s Caffé and Urge Bar.
To donate an auction item for the GABA Charitable Auction 2013, please contact GABA Event Manager Julian Cook, before Friday 11 October, by emailing: email@example.com