Food Bank Raises More Than 9 Million Meals at Annual Can Do Awards Gala

Pictured above: Motown legends The Four Tops bring down the house with performances of their classic hits, including “I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch).” 

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José Andrés, David Burtka & Neil Patrick Harris; Hildy Simmons; and Stop & Shop Honored for Their Dedication to Ending Hunger

New York, NY, April 17, 2019Food Bank For New York City, the city’s leading hunger-relief organization working to end food poverty throughout the five boroughs, celebrated vital community members and friends at its annual Can Do Awards Dinner last night, raising more than 9 million meals in the fight against hunger. The evening honored Chef José Andrés; David Burtka & Neil Patrick Harris; Hildy Simmons; and Stop & Shop for their commitment to hunger relief in New York City. The star-studded annual gala is instrumental in raising funds and awareness to provide support for the 1.4 million New Yorkers who rely on Food Bank For New York City’s programs and services.

Sponsored by Bank of America and chaired by Lee Brian Schrager and Jodisue Rosen & Scott R. Feldman, the event featured a live auction conducted by Christie’s Lydia Fenet, as well as a performance by Motown sensations The Four Tops who delighted the crowd to classics, including “Baby I Need Your Loving,” “It’s the Same Old Song,” and “I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch).”

Other notable guests included Katie Lee, Luann de Lesseps, Alex Guarnaschelli, Marc Murphy, Cassandra Freeman, Adam Richman, Thom Filicia, Ellie Krieger, Jessica Keenan Wynn, Lili Mirojnick, Jill Hennessy, Jonathan Tucker, and Ariel Fox..

The evening celebrated the many ways that New Yorkers have driven and continue to propel and support Food Bank’s goal of ending hunger, and each awardee was honored for creating lasting, positive change in New York City and across the globe. “Food Bank’s mission rests on decades of personal legacies of good will New Yorkers chose to establish with this organization,” said Margarette Purvis, President and CEO of Food Bank For New York City.

“When people decide to leave their normal lives and just try to change the life of a fellow citizen of the world, those are the people who truly deserve an award,” said José Andrés.

“This organization does such important work, changing the lives of so many New Yorkers, and I’ve loved spending time supporting them and sharing that sense of giving with our kids,” said David Burtka. “Food Bank has helped them develop a sense of pride and appreciation for the value of volunteering, which, as parents, is wonderful to witness.” Neil Patrick Harris added, “I really do think it’s important to represent yourself well to your children, to show them examples and opportunities and possibilities of how to be better.” Since its inception, the Can Do Awards has raised the funds to help Food Bank provide 105 million free meals for New Yorkers in need. Every dollar donated to Food Bank provides five meals for NYC residents experiencing food insecurity.

For more information please visit or follow  Facebook (FoodBankNYC), Twitter (@FoodBank4NYC) and Instagram (FoodBank4NYC).


About Food Bank For New York City

For 35 years, Food Bank For New York City has been the city’s major hunger-relief organization working to end hunger throughout the five boroughs. Nearly one in five New Yorkers relies on Food Bank for food and other resources. Food Bank takes a strategic, multifaceted approach that provides meals and builds capacity in the neediest communities, while raising awareness and engagement among all New Yorkers. Through its network of more than 1,000 charities and schools citywide, Food Bank provides food for more than 58 million free meals per year for New Yorkers in need. Food Bank For New York City’s income support services, including food stamps (also known as SNAP) and free tax assistance for the working poor, put more than $110 million each year into the pockets of New Yorkers, helping them to afford food and achieve greater dignity and independence. Food Bank’s nutrition education programs and services empower more than 50,000 children, teens and adults to sustain a healthy diet and active lifestyle on a limited budget. Working toward long-term solutions to food poverty, Food Bank develops policy and conducts research to inform community and government efforts.

To learn more about how you can help, please visit Follow us on Facebook (FoodBank4NYC), Twitter (@FoodBank4NYC) and Instagram (FoodBank4NYC).

About Bank of America

At Bank of America, we’re guided by a common purpose to help make financial lives better, through the power of every connection. We’re delivering on this through responsible growth with a focus on our environmental, social and governance (ESG) leadership. ESG is embedded across our eight lines of business and reflects how we help fuel the global economy, build trust and credibility, and represent a company that people want to work for, invest in and do business with. It’s demonstrated in the inclusive and supportive workplace we create for our employees, the responsible products and services we offer our clients, and the impact we make around the world in helping local economies thrive. An important part of this work is forming strong partnerships with nonprofits and advocacy groups, such as community, consumer and environmental organizations, to bring together our collective networks and expertise to achieve greater impact.

Learn more at, and connect with us on Twitter (@BofA_News).

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