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Power with a Purpose
By Alana Kulig, Director of Events & Partnerships
November 15, 2019
New York City is forever changing, but there’s something we can always count on each fall – the Annual Power Lunch for Women, now in its 33rd year. In 1986, Citymeals Co-Founder Gael Greene and then Board Member Joan Weill conceived Power Lunch as a spoof on the “power breakfast” concept, popular among businessmen at the time. Since then, this invitation-only event has taken a permanent slot in the appointment books of New York City’s leading women in business, art, politics, media, and entertainment.
Each year, the Power Lunch for Women raises over $1 million to fund the preparation and delivery of meals for our homebound elderly neighbors. This year, two-time host Jane Krakowski will help us honor some of our most devoted supporters – Thelma Golden, Grace, Chloe and Wendi Murdoch, and David Rockwell. To kick off the season they each went on meal deliveries.
As Director and Chief Curator of The Studio Museum, Thelma Golden delivered to Citymeals recipients in the neighborhood close to her heart – Harlem. On the route, she met 73-year-old Gladys, who recently had a long stay in the hospital. This Citymeals recipient was relieved to know she could rely on a nourishing meal and friendly check-in upon her return home.
Longtime Citymeals supporters Wendi Murdoch and her daughters Chloe and Grace have been volunteering with Citymeals for over a decade, since the girls were small children. These power women delivered to 85-year-old Linda, who lives on the Upper East Side. Originally from Germany, Linda took care of her sick husband for years before he passed. She now lives alone and has no family in New York City. “I love the meals!” Linda beams.
David Rockwell has been a Citymeals Board Member for over 20 years supporting our mission and the lifeline of meals Citymeals provides. And last fall, David and his team at Rockwell Group designed the façade of Citymeals’ Joan & Bob Tisch Emergency Meal Distribution Center in the Bronx featuring larger-than-life portraits of meal recipients.
David delivered to 76-year-old Zoila, one of the Citymeals recipients featured in the warehouse design. She has lived in the same apartment on Manhattan’s West Side for more than 50 years and began receiving home-delivered meals five years ago after shoulder surgery made it impossible to carry shopping bags home.
The people who rely on Citymeals – New Yorkers in their 80s and 90s and 100s – are the people who built this city. We are grateful to our Power Lunch attendees, honorees and sponsors for helping to ensure they never go a day without a nourishing meal and a friendly smile.