STAMFORD, Conn. –Stamford native and baseball great Bobby Valentine will return Thursday, Nov. 10, to host the 2011MS Dinner of Champions at the Hyatt Regency Greenwich in Old Greenwich.
“We are honored to have with us a longtime supporter and friend to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Connecticut Chapter,” said Lisa Gerrol, chapter president. “Bobby, who began his athletic career in his hometown of Stamford, has over the course of 40 years made headlines from Los Angeles to New York to Japan. We are honored to have Bobby’s enthusiastic support. He is committed to community and outreach.”
After a successful and much-celebrated high school career in both football and baseball, the Stamford athlete was selected in the first round by the L.A. Dodgers. Valentine went on to have successful stints with the Angels, Padres, Mets and Mariners. After retiring as a player, Valentine stepped up to the plate as manager, leading the New York Mets to the World Series in 2000 and the Marines to the Japan Series title in 2005. Today, Valentine serves as an analyst for ESPN. He is also director of public safety and public health for his hometown of Stamford.
Lisa Gerrol, president of the National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter, poses with baseball great Bobby Valentine at the 2009 MS Dinner of Champions, where Valentine served as master of ceremonies. Valentine is partnering again with the chapter to host the 2011 MS Dinner of Champions Thursday, Nov. 10, at the Hyatt Regency Greenwich in Old Greenwich.
Valentine has been recognized many times for his contributions to the community. He has been actively involved with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Connecticut Chapter, for more than 20 years, serving as host to its annual MS Dinner of Champions seven times. In 1982, Valentine received the Leonard Schine Memorial Award from the chapter for outstanding volunteerism. In 1998 Valentine received the Good Guy Award from the New York Press Photographers Association and the New Jersey Sportswriters Association, and he received the same award from the New York chapter of the Baseball Writers Association in 2001. Valentine received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Bobby Bragan Youth Foundation in 2001 and the Joan Payson Award for humanitarian services in 2002.
The MS Dinner of Champions event honors outstanding corporate leaders and local and national sports figures making a significant contribution to the community at large. The dinner includes a cocktail reception, dinner, awards ceremony, live auction and silent auction. Past honorees include Steve Young, Joe Namath, Frank Gifford and Billie Jean King.
This year’s event will recognize Steiner Sports Marketing founder and chairman Brandon Steiner and executive vice president Chris Amoroso. Special guests include Ottis Anderson, former NFL player for the New York Giants, and Jesus Montero, MLB player for the New York Yankees. Jim Abbott, the former Major League Baseball pitcher, who played despite having been born without a right hand, will also attend and will receive the J. Walter Kennedy award. Funds raised through events, such as the MS Dinner of Champions, ensure ongoing scientific research to find a cure and provide for the continuation of vital programs and services offered by the chapter to Connecticut residents diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.
Valentine owns and operates Bobby V’s Sports Gallery Café in Stamford. Valentine and his wife, Mary, the daughter of former Brooklyn Dodgers pitcher Ralph Branca, reside in Stamford.
For more information on MS Dinner of Champions or to purchase tickets, please contact Kim Maloney, National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter development manager, at 860-913-2550 or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more about multiple sclerosis, please visit www.ctfightsMS.org.