Eden Prairie, Minn.(August 22, 2005)The Starkey Hearing Foundation held its annual So the World May Hear Awards Gala over the weekend in St. Paul, Minn., and raised a record $4 million-plus. The event, which each year recognizes individuals for their significant humanitarian contributions, this year honored Garth Brooks Teammates for Kids Foundation, Olive Osmonds Childrens Miracle Network, the Wayne Gretzky Foundation, and the Richard Schulze Family Foundation. Garth Brooks, who attended the event with his fiance, fellow country singer Trisha Yearwood, showed his appreciation for the recognition by bidding $250,000 during a live auction to fund a Starkey trip to South Africa to give hearing aids to people in need.
This spectacular evening included performances by Trisha Yearwood, singer/songwriter Michael Bolton, and pop and stage performer Donny Osmond. Dozens of additional celebrities including Loraine Bracco, Robert Culp, Lou Ferrigno, Senator John Glenn, Marlee Matlin, Leslie Nielsen, Mickey Rooney, Marianne Ross, and many others also attended the event.
10-year old Matthew Holmstrom of St. Paul, Minn., received hearing aids from the Starkey Hearing Foundation two years ago. He served as the Gala's "poster child" last year. He performed Amazing Grace to a crowd of 1,500 at Saturday's event. Looking on are renowned composer Paul Williams and recording artist Michael Bolton.
Actress Marlee Matlin spoke at the Gala.
Bill Austin, founder of the Starkey Hearing Foundation,
and his wife, Tani, on the red carpet.
When asked why she was supporting the Starkey Hearing Foundation, Trisha Yearwood said, "Especially in the entertainment industry, because you have to focus on yourself and your career every day, it's really important to do things that remind you that it's not just about you; things that really take you back to reality.
Were here to make money to help people, and thats a great thing, said Loraine Bracco, who participated in the event for the second year in a row.
Since 1973, the Starkey Hearing Foundation has been giving the gift of hearing to the worlds underprivilegedespecially childrenthrough its internationally recognized mission trips and its domestic program, Hear Now. Since 2000, the Foundation has provided more than 115,000 hearing aids to those in need around the world. To learn more about the Starkey Hearing Foundation, visit www.sotheworldmayhear.org.
For more information on Starkey visit www.starkey.com.