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On November 21st, Sinai Health Foundation hosted its marquee event Dinner with Scientists presented by PearTree Financial to a crowd of more than 400 guests from the philanthropic and business community to benefit the Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute (LTRI), part of Sinai Health System. LTRI is one of the top 10 biomedical research institutes in North America and continues to advance the understanding of human biology in health and disease.

For over 30 years, the LTRI has demonstrated that the integration of research into the clinical setting has enormous potential to advance our understanding of the diseases of our time. This year’s event focused on Where Care Connects, the meeting point of patient care, research and the community.

“Tonight we capture the essence of connectivity and how it fuels discovery,” said Joseph Mapa, CEO of Sinai Health Foundation. “One of the most powerful connections is the one we have with our community. We would like to thank everyone here tonight, but special thanks to our co-chairs Stacey Cynamon, Laura Dottori-Attanasio and Judy Tanenbaum for all their support and efforts around this incredible event.”

The evening began with a VIP Reception hosted by PwC and included board members, lead donors and presenting sponsor PearTree Financial, expert panel sponsor Gluskin Sheff and Discovery Circle sponsors Element Fleet Management and EY.

For the main event, each table had a designated scientist for guests to learn more about the research conducted at LTRI and the impact their gifts would have on their work. Pulitzer Prize winner for national reporting and founder of The Huffington Post and Thrive Global, Arianna Huffington was the keynote speaker and intrigued guests with a talk about the ramifications of lack of sleep. She discussed the importance of sleep, the science behind it and how imperative it is to not only work performance but also to one’s personal well-being.

Guests, sponsors, and donors were also treated to an expert panel discussion sponsored by Gluskin Sheff. Acclaimed television host, author, researcher and journalist, Dr. Jennifer Gardy was the panel moderator, guiding the conversation among LTRI scientists: Dr. Graham Collingridge, Dr. Helen McNeill, Dr. Alexandre Zlotta and Dr. Rayjean Hung who discussed how important connections lead to discoveries.

Another incredible highlight of the evening was the $1 million gift announcement from longstanding partner Scotiabank. This gift will be matched by the Tanenbaum Research Matching Endowment Fund doubling their impact. The fund created by Larry and Judy Tanenbaum and their family provides 1:1 match funding for gifts of $1 million. This donation in particular will support the work of Dr. Stephen Lye, a Senior Investigator at the LTRI. Dr. Lye’s research focus is in better understanding both the genetic and environmental factors that shape the health of infants and children, from the time of conception.

This unique event continues to propel life-changing research and supports vital connections that fuel discovery. The patients featured in the video above were also in attendance and got to see themselves on the big screen as the video played to open the evening and remind guests why this cause is so important.