The nation’s leading nonprofit dedicated to advanced research on depression, Hope for Depression Research Foundation (HDRF), announced the winners of the 15th Annual HOPE Luncheon Seminar to be held at the Plaza Hotel on November 10 in 11:30 am, including Olympic gold. medalist Michael Phelps, Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay and James R. Borynack, CEO of Findlay Galleries.
The seminar, led by emcee Chuck Scarborough, will focus on “The Importance of the Gut Microbiome to Your Mental Health” with leading scientists and psychiatrists taking the stage to share the latest information. Dr. Conor Liston, associate professor of neuroscience and psychiatry at the Brain and Mind Institute at Weill Cornell Medicine, will be the key medical speaker. A rising star in neuroscience, Liston has published several studies on the gut-brain axis, providing new insight into how chemicals derived from gut microbes influence brain chemistry regulating mood.
The program will also include information on the findings of the acclaimed HDRF Depression Working Group, an international consortium of top neuroscientists from different universities who are pooling their data and expertise to accelerate research. The working group was convened in 2010 by the founding president of HDRF, Audrey Gruss; today, he leads the country’s most advanced research on depression.
Michael Phelps will accept the 2021 Hope Award for Depression Advocacy at the event. Widely regarded as one of the greatest athletes of all time, he won 28 Olympic medals, including a record 23 gold, and set 39 world records during his distinguished career. Phelps courageously spoke out about his own mental health issues, becoming one of the first and most prominent voices of athletes who helped catapult important conversation through sports and pop culture. In 2008, he created the Michael Phelps Foundation, which promotes water safety, a healthy lifestyle (physical and mental) and the pursuit of dreams. The Foundation’s flagship program – IM – is implemented through strategic partnerships with the Boys & Girls Clubs of America and Special Olympics International.
Previous recipients of the Hope Award for Depression Advocacy include LeAnn Rimes, Ashley Judd, Brooke Shields, Taraji P. Henson, Richard Dreyfuss, and Terry Bradshaw.
Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay will accept the 2021 Community Ambassador of Hope award. A strong advocate for mental health awareness, Irsay launched the “Kicking The Stigma” campaign alongside his players to raise awareness about prevalence mental health disorders in Indiana. The initiative also collects and distributes funds to nonprofits and other organizations to expand treatment services throughout the community.
James R. Borynack, CEO of Findlay Galleries, will accept the 2021 Hope Corporate Visionary Award. This year Findlay Galleries celebrates 152 years in the art business, a family business founded in 1870 and now the second oldest art gallery in the United States. Findlay represents over 100 artists and artist estates with galleries in Palm Beach and New York. Findlay Galleries is also a leader in its communities, advancing a number of charitable causes, particularly in the area of mental health. They have generously supported HDRF since its founding.
The Hope Luncheon and Seminar will celebrate the foundation’s leadership in depression research over the past 15 years.
“Our research has always been essential in advancing understanding of depression, which is the number one cause of disability worldwide,” said Audrey Gruss, Founder and President of HDRF.
Gruss added: “The pandemic has only exacerbated the crisis, with more than a third of Americans struggling with symptoms of depression and anxiety. Our Depression Task Force works tirelessly to find the answers that will bring depression treatment into a new era. In the meantime, we also salute great public figures like Michael Phelps who move society forward with their courage and compassion by speaking openly about mental health. “
Each year, the luncheon brings together over 300 New York City philanthropists, asset managers, business and media professionals, socialites and celebrities who come together to raise awareness about depression and mood disorders there. associates and to raise funds for further research.
Buy tables and tickets for the HOPE lunch at www.HopeForDepression.org/events