Apr 24, 2013
Karen E. Butler
GREENWICH, Conn. – Greenwich resident Kendra Farn, former CBS News correspondent, has been named mistress of ceremonies to the 30th annual Women Against MS (WAMS) Luncheon, which will be held Thursday, May 2, at The Hyatt Regency in Old Greenwich.
Kendra, who with her television sportscaster husband, Noah Finz, owns P Garyn Productions, has a long history with the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter. Recognizing a need for a philanthropic event for women supporting women battling multiple sclerosis, in 1984 Kendra’s mother, Carol, and her best friend Margie Warwick, WAMS committee chair, helped launch the first Fairfield County Women Against MS Luncheon, which then featured a fashion show. Carol Farn passed away three years ago but was an active member of the WAMS planning committee throughout the ‘90s and then into 2000s, taking daughters, Kendra and Alison, with her to many luncheons.
Kendra’s father, Gary, founder and owner of Gary Farn Limited, a U.S. distributor of international designer fragrances, was also recruited to help with the luncheons. For years, he ensured swag bags were filled with fragrances or gifts. In 1997, the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter, honored the entire family when, at its annual MS Dinner of Champions, it presented the Silver Hope Chest Award to Carol, Gary and their daughters. Never before or since has the chapter recognized an entire family with the award which honored the family’s lifelong commitment to hands-on philanthropy.
“My mother’s life was devoted to her family and her philanthropic work,” remembered Kendra, an Emmy award winning reporter who spent 14 years in the New York City television market with Channel 2 and Channel 4. “It’s very hard to live up to my mother’s charity work. It has all come full circle, however, I am delighted to be partnering with a charity for which my mother supported with such passion and dedication.”
Author Ronda Giangrecco has been named this year’s keynote speaker. Giangrecco, who has ties to Connecticut through her husband, will share her personal story of living life as fully as possible in the face of MS. In an ironic twist of fate her husband’s mother lost her battle with MS when he was just 16 years old.
More than 6,000 Connecticut residents battle MS. Symptoms can include, among other things, numbness and tingling in the extremities, difficulties with vision and speech, stiffness in the limbs, and in extreme cases, complete paralysis. There currently is no cure for multiple sclerosis. Statistics reveal women are two times more likely to be diagnosed with MS than men. Funds raised through Connecticut Chapter events, such as WAMS luncheons, ensure ongoing scientific research to find better treatments and a cure. These funds also provide for the continuation of vital programs and services offered by the chapter.
Last year, the Fairfield County Women Against MS Luncheon attracted more than 320 guests and raised over $120,000 for the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter.
The 2013 Women Against MS Luncheon features boutique shopping before and after the event.
For more information on the 2013 Fairfield County Women Against MS Luncheon or to reserve a seat, please visit www.ctfightsMS.org.