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OC Philanthropist to be Honored at National Philanthropy Day Orange County with a Musical Tribute

American Celebration Encore to be Performed in Joann Leatherby’s Honor – 11/15


Media Contact: Jess Block – – 909-706-8525 

GARDEN GROVE, CA—An encore performance featuring key song-and-dance numbers from Chapman University’s annual American Celebration will be performed as a musical tribute to Joann Leatherby of Silverado, who will be honored with the Lifetime Achievement award for her philanthropic impact upon the arts, education and disadvantaged children at this year’s National Philanthropy Day Orange County Awards Luncheon on Thursday, November 15, 2012 at the Hyatt Regency Orange County.

Leatherby is the 2012 Gala Chair for the American Celebration, Chapman University’s signature fundraising event, held November 3, featuring live song and dance entertainment provided by more than 100 Chapman students, accompanied by a live orchestra, in fully produced scenes from Broadway shows.

Immediately prior to Leatherby accepting her National Philanthropy Day Orange County award, the American Celebration Encore will be performed by Chapman University’s College of Performing Arts students and faculty and will include:

  • There’s No Business Like Show Business” from the musical Annie Get Your Gun, to be performed by Daniel Shipley, class of 2015, vocal performance major
  • “Shall We Dance?” from the musical The King and I, to be performed by Neda Lahidji, class of 2013, vocal performance major
  • I Could Have Danced All Night” from the musical My Fair Lady, to be performed by Chelsea Chaves, class of 2013, vocal performance major

Dr. Janet Kao, adjunct faculty member of Chapman’s College of Performing Arts, will play piano for the performances.

Leatherby, an active member of Chapman’s Board of Trustees since 1994, has a passion for academia and has been a supporter of Chapman University for decades, currently chairing the university’s Advancement Committee in addition to the 2012 American Celebration. She has played a key role providing comprehensive vision for Chapman’s future, including spearheading the campaign to build Leatherby Libraries and in creating the Chapman Plan, which has led to increased institutional support for improved undergraduate and graduate programs.

Also as a supporter of disadvantaged children, as a representative of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, and as an arts supporter of South Coast Repertory Theatre, Pacific Symphony and the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, Leatherby has had a wide-ranging impact on the OC community. She also co-founded Casa de Amma, a unique apartment community fostering growth and independence in adults with special needs.

The 2012 National Philanthropy Day Orange County Awards Luncheon, with the theme “Giving is Always in Season,” will be held Thursday, November 15, 2012 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Hyatt Regency Orange County located at 11999 Harbor Blvd., Garden Grove, Calif.

National Philanthropy Day Orange County has become the most prominent philanthropic recognition event in Orange County, with more than 1000 honorees since its inception in 1985, including honors in past years for OC philanthropists Donald Bren, Marion Knott, Henry and Susan Samueli, and Henry Segerstrom.

Marybelle and Sebastian Paul Musco, the 2011 Lifetime Achievement Honorees, will be Honorary Chairs of National Philanthropy Day Orange County, and will also serve as American Celebration Honorary Gala Chairs.

ABOUT NATIONAL PHILANTHROPY DAY: National Philanthropy Day Orange County honors those who have demonstrated philanthropy and enhanced their communities and the world. Each year more than 100 Association of Fundraising Professionals chapters throughout the US and Canada honor the philanthropic efforts of individuals, businesses, and groups. Net proceeds of the event support the ethical advancement of philanthropy in the community by the Orange County Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.

National Philanthropy Day Orange County is sponsored by the Orange County Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and is presented by the Orange County Register. For more information, visit

Public information/tickets:


Media Inquiries contact:

Jess Block, NPDOC Publicist,,

Sally Lawrence, NPDOC Event Co-Chair,,

Sheri Nazaroff, NPDOC Event Co-Chair,

All 2012 National Philanthropy Day Orange County outstanding honorees include: 


Joann Leatherby, Silverado

*Deeply dedicated to education, the arts and disadvantaged children


Bruno SeratoAnaheim

*Committed to helping the less fortunate, having served over 300,000 pasta dinners to ‘motel children’


Assistance League Anaheim, Anaheim

*Over 70 years and nearly 900,000 hours of serving those less fortunate


Ronald M. Simon; founder of “Simon Scholars Program”; founder and chairman of Simon Foundation for Education and Housing, Newport Beach

*Provided over 600 educational scholarships valued at $20M to support economically disadvantaged students to reach success


S.D. Deacon Corp. of California, Irvine Office, Irvine

*Passionate about community giving, with over $32,500 to 15 OC organizations from September 2011-2012 and continued employee charitable giving programs


Farmers & Merchants Bank (F&M), Orange County

*Committed to donating $1M every year to charitable, civic and religious organizations


The PIMCO Foundation, Newport Beach

*Significantly impacting areas of urgent need through over $7M of giving and 8,864 employee volunteer hours to 100+ nonprofits


Nikita Urs, Santa Ana

*Passionate about helping less fortunate children, having collected over 1,000 Christmas boxes for underprivileged kids and donating her hair eight times to the ill, from age 5-15


Joe LinsFullerton

*Committed to serving the local community through giving and leadership, including donating free ads for area nonprofits on a highly visible company billboard

By Editor

The New Santa Ana blog has been covering news, events and politics in Santa Ana since 2009.

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