Thursday, June 02, 2011

The HPS Academy Awards – a night at the HPS Oscars

This year at conference, as you know by now, our theme was the Academy Awards. In keeping with that theme, we had a very special gala dinner, complete with photographers and a red carpet to walk down into the dinner. For fun, we gave away some Oscars - some serious, and some tongue in cheek. Several people have wanted a list of the Oscars. Well, here it is. You can also find it on the HPS Network Web site at: Unfortunately, my Oscar pics didn't come out very well. It was too dark. Taking pics at the dinner is always a challenge - do you set your camera for the dark lighting, or the fast-moving people?

Below is a list of the “HPS Oscars” presented at the 18th Annual HPS Network Family Dinner. Congratulations to the winners!

Best Short Film – Raphael Velez

Raphael is a high school student with HPS. He made a short film about his first experience at the HPS conference. The film has been a wonderful tool to show others why the HPS conference is so important, educational and meaningful, to those who attend.

Best Cinematography – Tommy Tillman

For years Tommy Tillman has shot wonderful photos and video at HPS conferences. He and his wife, HPS’er Karen Tillman, then have edited the photos and video into video vignettes that serve as precious memories, and valuable outreach tools, the rest of the year.

Best Foreign Language Film – Frankie Feliciano

Frankie Feliciano works at a fevered pace in the weeks leading up to conference to help translate conference materials and speaker biographies into Spanish. It’s a tough translation job, and Frankie always does it with grace and dedication.

Best Art Direction – Mervin Hernandez

Mervin Hernandez was responsible for the program design. Although he’s trained as an accountant, Mervin has shown a great talent for graphic design. He designed the new HPS Network booth!

Most Tenacious Talent Scouts - Brenda Lopez and Lincoln Hospital

Brenda Lopez has forged a wonderful cooperative relationship with Lincoln Hospital to do outreach in the Bronx. They have worked closely together, through programs like the Asthma Van, to make the community more aware of HPS.

Most Tenacious Talent Scouts – Yada Soto and Emilio Ortiz

Yada and Emilio have tirelessly worked on outreach in New England, even taking it upon themselves to fund their own booths at area health and community fairs.

Best Directors – Richie Rangel and Ivette Vasquez

Richie and Ivette have been instrumental in organizing the HPS Network Puerto Rico and the HPS Puerto Rico conferences.

Best Costume Design – Yeidyly Vergne

Yeidyly has also been key to organizing the HPS Conferences in Puerto Rico. She also gained fame dressed up like one of the X-Men for the children at the 2009 Puerto Rico Conference.

Best Visual Effects – Chris Fenlon

Chris is organizing the HPS Network in the United Kingdom. He’s earned a reputation for bridging the distance by being the Skype King.

Best Music – Candice and Crystal Sipe

Candice and Crystal Sipe not only perform at every HPS Network Conference in New York, but for the past 12 years they’ve used their musical talent to host an annual concert benefit.

Best Actress – Karen Tillman

This past year Karen Tillman’s HPS story was featured in an episode of Mystery Diagnosis.

Best Producers – Chris Gallagher and Greg Van Dyke

Chris Gallagher and his company Rhapsody Computer Subscription Services are corporate supporters of the HPS Network. Rhapsody makes a donation to the HPS Network for every new customer. Greg Van Dyke founded the Adopt-A-Family fund to lend financial assistance to families that need to attend conference, but can’t afford it.

Best Original Screen Play – Joe DiGennaro

Joe DiGennaro, father of the brother and sister band “J”, is assisting the HPS Network with grant writing.

World of Difference Award – HPS Association Japan

For several years now the HPS Network and the HPS Association of Japan have been in communication. This year the association sent several representatives to the conference to build friendships and share information. The award was accepted by Kyoko Hashimoto, Ambassador for the group, and Dr. Takuma Ishii.

Best of the Best Lighthouse Award – Richard Appell

While Donna Appell is the face of the Network, we might not have survived the economic turmoil of the last year. Richard quietly and modestly worked behind the scenes to support the work of the Network when donation dollars fell.

Best of the Best Doctor of the Year Award – Dr. William Gahl

Dr. William Gahl has served as the primary investigator for HPS at the National Institutes of Health since the mid 1990s. Without his ongoing dedication, much in the field of HPS research would never have happened.

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