Rock Evolution, The 12th Annual LAPD Hollywood PAL Awards, was an incredible night for our community. Hosted at the legendary Avalon, over four hundred guests attended the festivities including Deputy Chief Beatrice Girmala, Battalion Chief Timothy Kelly, LACC President Renee Martinez, Dan Halden from CD13, former Councilmember Tom LaBonge, Leron Gubler from the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, and many more esteemed guests. Everyone beamed with pride over the accomplishments of Hollywood PAL and its young leaders.
During cocktail hour, guests enjoyed an acoustic rock performance by JetLemons, perused the incredible silent auction, and posed for photos in the rockin’ FotoSpark photo booth. Once the doors opened to the main ballroom, students from the American Musical & Dramatic Academy (AMDA) kicked off the program with a lively rock n’ roll medley.
PAL Board President Jason Hariton welcomed guests and introduced Commanding Officer Captain Peter Zarcone who spoke about the true value and impact of the PAL program. PAL Officers recognized 3 outstanding PAL kids for being exceptional role models and therefore deserving of the Pal Kid of the Year Award.
These young leaders then presented Gerald Travens, Gary Taglan and Danny Pesqueira with Hollywood PAL Community Leadership Awards for their contributions to society. The PAL Board also presented Officer Nikki Abskaron with special recognition for her 5 years of service to Hollywood PAL. Her heartfelt speech inspired a standing ovation as she thanked the families of Hollywood for trusting her to care and mentor their children. “I will never take a single day that I worked with these kids for granted. My time with them, watching them grow, mature and succeed will live within my heart forever.” (Officer Abskharon)
With spirits high, music by Good Cop Bad Cop kept the party going all night, and auctioneer Tony Magnemi led a highly entertaining Live Auction segment, which ended with our very own Captain Peter Zarcone auctioning off a homemade peach pie that he had made that morning!
Overall, the evening was a tremendous success and we hope that everyone had a wonderful time. Thanks to this fundraiser we are currently on track to be able to enroll 550 kids in Hollywood PAL in 2016. However, our goal is to provide programs for 600 children. If you have not yet had a chance to donate, please consider doing so now. The cost per child for the Hollywood PAL program is $500 for the entire year, and being enrolled in this program protects them from a life of gangs and violence.