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'A Night Of 100 Stars 2013'
Everybody is a star at the Dusable Museum's annual gala
Honorees at the DuSable Museum's "A Night Of 100 Stars" include (left to right) Michelle L. Collins (Celestial Award), Cymbrehona Warren (Rising Star Award), Barbara Bates (Meteor Award) and Diane Primo (Constellation Award). Mara Brock Akil, a television producer, writer and creator, received the Superstar Award. She couldn't attend due to the illness of both of her daughters.
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Copyright 2012: The Celebrity Front Page. Entertainment Information in Chicago. All rights reserved. 
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   IT was a night to remember––a festive night of celebration, acknowledgement and thanks. It was the annual DuSable Museum of African American History’s “A Night Of 100 Stars” gala at the South Shore Cultural Center.
    The annual event that has become one of Chicago’s most anticipated affairs honored five extraordinary women, each of whom has distinguished herself with her achievements and the unique ability to inspire others. Included among those celebrated were entertainment icon Mara Brock Akil, a Northwestern University graduate who is the executive producer of such TV shows as GirlfriendsThe Jamie Foxx ShowMoesha, (creator of) The Game and producer of the new movie Sparkle, featuring Whitney Houston; fashion designer Barbara Bates, a breast cancer survivor/advocate who was a participant in NBC-TV’s reality competition series Fashion Star; financial guru Michelle L. Collins, president of Cambium LLC and a board member at Integrys Energy Group; marketing, advertising and communications giant Diane Primo, chairman and CEO at IntraLink Global; and the youngest among those who were honored was Young Women’s Leadership Charter School senior Cymbrehona Warren, who will begin her studies at Hampton University in the fall. 
    This year’s gala, co-chaired by Nicole Johnson-Scales and Sandy Reynolds, was moved from the usual museum setting to one of the gems of the lakefront, the South Shore Cultural Center, where the awards presentation co-hosts, ABC7 Chicago’s Charles Thomas and Karen Jordan, kept the program moving to allow museum supporters more time to enjoy the rest of the evening. “This year we are in a new venue,” said Dr. Carol L. Adams, president and CEO of DuSable Museum. “We have kept our flavor and increased our space! As one of the Museums in the Park, we feel right at home here and our Chicago Park District colleagues have gone out of their way to accommodate us in style.”
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is joined by Dr. Carol L. Adams, president and CEO of DuSable Museum, and Clarence K. Bourne, chairman of the museum's board of trustees. The gala's chairpersons (below, left to right) were Nicole Johnson-Scales and Sandy Reynolds. The variety of performers at the event included entertainer Freida Lee, and gala supporters (bottom) dance to the music of Terisa Griffin. (Photographs by John Wheeler)
   While some regular attendees of the gala expressed a preference that the event be held at the museum, there was no doubt that the lavish array of delicacies and a variety of top-notch entertainment were reflective of the event’s motto: “Edibles, Potables and Notables.” Music was supplied by a variety of entertainers, including CRDT Conjunto, Dee Alexander, Henry Johnson, Freida Lee, Vance Kelly and Terisa Griffin, whose powerful voice had people rushing to the dance floor.
   Even the most finicky eater could find something tasty at the “Star Gazers Buffet,” where tasty treats like gumbo, Greek salad and barbecued turkey were supplied by some of Chicago’s noted food specialists, including Ja’Grill Restaurant & Catering, Just Turkey of Homewood, Beyond Events Catering, Bon Manager Catering, Josephine’s Southern Culture Cooking, C’Est Si Bon, Fanfares Catering Inc., Lenore’s Kitchen Catering, Melon Express, Parrot Cage Restaurant, Sinha’Ltd. Catering and Jordy Cakes.
   As a special attraction, the gala featured the Burroughs Gallery, which was dedicated to the work and career of DuSable Museum founder Dr. Margaret Goss Burroughs.
   The gala is the biggest fundraiser for the historic museum that continues to implement new features to better serve the community. “The DuSable Museum of African American History is the first and longest-running museum of African American history and culture in the United States,” Adams said. “When we complete our expansion into the historic Burnham-designed Roundhouse structure, we will also be the largest. Our latest exhibition, Geoffrey and Carmen: A Memoir in Four Movements, chronicles the remarkable careers of Geoffrey Holder and Carmen deLavallade. This is just one of the delights that await our patrons.”

Photograph by John Wheeler
–– Walter Leavy
Photograph by Jerome Simmons