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Adventist Health Sonora Gala raises money for local cancer patients

Adventist Health News

August 29, 2019 (Sonora, CA) — Adventist Health Sonora will host the 19th annual Joie de Vie Gala at the Mother Lode Fairgrounds on Sunday, Sept. 29, 2019. This year’s theme, Havana Nights, will transport guests to an exciting Latin-inspired evening. All proceeds from the benefit event will go to Adventist Health Sonora’s Cancer Patient Support Fund, which helps local cancer patients with their unmet financial needs, such as transportation, groceries, utilities, rent, house cleaning and medication co-payments.

This year’s Gala will feature two-time SAMMIE Award nominee, The DonGato Latin Band. Other festivities will include silent and live auctions, a four-course Cuban inspired menu from Lunch Lady Catering and keynote address from Robert Emmons, Ph.D., the world’s leading scientific expert on gratitude. Another highlight of the evening will include three local cancer patients as they share their stories of hope, perseverance and gratefulness.

Also on the Gala program is the much-anticipated presentation of the Irving J. Symons Award for outstanding community service, sponsored by the Sonora Area Foundation. This year’s recipients are Ron and Ann Patel of Sonora. Former recipients of the award include Irving Symons, Frank Salel, H. Randolph Holder, Robert Cutler, Pete Kerns, Pete and Sue Kleinert, Joe Martin, Chuck and Willy Evans, Mary Laveroni, Patricia and Harvey Rhodes, Ty Wivell, Dick and Audrey Pland, Kate Powell Segerstrom, Don and Charlotte Frazier and Fred and Darlene Mathews.

Kara Rachal, director of philanthropy at Adventist Health Sonora, says the Joie de Vie Gala provides an opportunity for Cancer Institute supporters to come together for a great cause. “We always want to make this a fun and memorable event for the people who support us in improving cancer care in our community,” Rachal says. “This year, we are excited to honor three local cancer patients and get a real-life glimpse into the impact the support fund has made on their lives.”

The event has already garnered a number of early sponsors, including:

Diamond Sponsors - Black Oak Casino Resort, Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk Indians and Yosemite Pathology

Gold Sponsors - Auto Tech & Tires, Glenn S. Caldwell Insurance Services, Chicken Ranch Casino, Dr. Mihoko Fujita, Royce Construction and Design, and Timothy and Jennifer Trujillo

Silver Sponsors - Mary Jo Brereton, Clarke Broadcasting, J. Hart Plumbing, Dr. Yousef Khelfa, Northern California Spine Institute, Safari Smiles Dental, Sierra Emergency Medical Group, Wheeler & Egger, CPAs, California Gold Development Corporation and Shari Lyons, Realtor.

“We are blessed to have such a supportive family of businesses and individuals in this community,” Rachal says. “Our Cancer Patient Support Fund continues to help cancer patients during trying times because of the generosity of these supporters.”

The 2019 Joie de Vie Gala Committee includes Deedra Hope, Kelly Johnson, Lindsay Brewer, Julie Morgan, Kristin Newton, Addison Hudgins, Kara Rachal and Nikki Coleman.

Information on attending this year’s Gala, or becoming a sponsor or donor, is available by visiting or by calling (209) 536-5022.


About Adventist Health Sonora

Adventist Health Sonora is a not-for-profit 152-bed health care facility including 72 acute beds, 12 swing beds, 68 skilled nursing beds and a large network of clinics, owned and operated by Adventist Health in Roseville, California. In addition to emergency and acute care services, other Adventist Health Sonora services include advanced cardiac care, cancer center, diagnostic imaging, home health, hospice, intensive care, obstetrics, rural health, surgical services, wellness center, wound care and hyperbaric oxygen, and over 20 primary care, urgent care and specialty clinics. The Medical Center provided care for 156,455 outpatient visits, 88,427 diagnostic imaging tests, 29,282 home care visits, 30,380 emergency department visits, and 4,433 hospital discharges in 2016. Staffed by over 180 physicians, 1,493 employees, and 121 volunteers, Adventist Health Sonora is the largest private employer in Tuolumne County. For more information about the Medical Center visit

About Adventist Health
Adventist Health is a faith-based, nonprofit integrated health system serving more than 75 communities in California, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington. Our workforce of 32,900 includes more than 23,600 employees; nearly 5,000 medical staff physicians; and 4,350 volunteers. Founded on Seventh-day Adventist heritage and values, Adventist Health provides compassionate care in 20 hospitals, more than 260 clinics (hospital-based, rural health and physician clinics), 15 home care agencies, seven hospice agencies and four joint-venture retirement centers. In addition, the Adventist Health Plan serves patients in Kings County. Visit for more information.