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Inaugural Grey Soirée Raises More Than $1 Million For Brain Tumor Research

Published on May 18, 2015 in Press Release

Funds from exclusive gala event at historic Hickory Hill will support the National Brain Tumor Society’s efforts to find better treatments and cures for brain tumors

National Brain Tumor Society (NBTS), the largest nonprofit dedicated to the brain tumor community in the United States, today announced that the inaugural Grey Soirée gala event raised more than $1 million dollars. Proceeds from the event will help fund the NBTS’s mission to find better treatments and ultimately a cure for brain tumors.

The Grey Soirée was hosted by Ashley and Alan Dabbiere in their historic McLean, Virginia home known as Hickory Hill. Mrs. Dabbiere, a former media executive, is a brain tumor survivor, research champion, and advocate.

“I was diagnosed with a glioma-type brain tumor two years ago and underwent surgery to remove as much tumor as possible,” said Mrs. Dabbiere. “Unfortunately removing all of this type of tumor is impossible, so I’m monitored every 3 months. I’m happy to report that I’m doing fantastically, with no new growth. As shocking as this diagnosis was to Alan, our children, and me, we are making the best of it and doing what we can to advance research and treatments for brain tumors. I am committed to fighting this lifelong disease for myself and others.”

The Grey Soirée is one effort by NBTS and the Dabbiere family to drive efforts to raise the resources needed to fund high-impact research, and advocate for federal polices that support the needs of the brain tumor community.

Attended by 500 guests, including brain tumor research pioneers as well as leading philanthropists, The Grey Soirée featured entertainment from nine-time Grammy Award winning musician Sheryl Crow. Food and wine pairings were provided by some of the Washington, D.C. area’s top chefs, including Chef Dimitri Moshovitis of Cava Grill, Chef Luc Dendievel of härth Restaurant, Chef George Rodrigues of Tico Restaurant, Chef Meredith Tomason of Rare Sweets, Elliot Spaisman of Astro Doughnuts & Fried Chicken, Executive Pastry Chef Alex Levin of Osteria Morini, and Chef Driss Zahidi of Evo Bistro.

Extraordinary philanthropy from the event will support NBTS’ core programs and our innovative Oligodendroglioma Research Fund. The Oligodendroglioma Research Fund leverages a team of highly experienced, nationally recognized scientific experts, working with NBTS staff, to determine the best investment strategy for funds, and to date has awarded grants to three leading researchers studying ways to target oligodendroglioma brain tumors with treatments.

Nearly 700,000 Americans are currently living with a primary brain tumor – including 28,000 children – and an estimated 14,000 people will die because of a primary malignant brain tumor this year. More than any other cancer, a brain tumor can have life-altering psychological, cognitive, behavioral, and physical effects. There are no known prevention or early detection methods, and there is no cure. Further, pediatric brain tumors are the most prevalent form of cancer in children and young adults under the age of 19, and the leading cause of death by disease in children under 14. NBTS’s mission is to create systematic change in the way that brain tumors treatments are researched, developed, tested, and approved to accelerate scientific discoveries toward new and effective therapies.

The Grey Soirée was presented by The Colony Group, the smart choice in Wealth Management. Hana and Wasef Jabsheh, as well as Diana DellaRatta and John Marshall, provided platinum philanthropy. Silver sponsors included: Kenda Noble Bittman and Chris Bittman, Lynda and Davis Camalier, Melinda and David Dabbiere, Claire and Al Dwoskin, Manisha and Roy Kapani, Jenny and Charlie Lindsey, Tina and Gary Mather, the Norton family, Saylor Foundation, and Vertex Pharmaceuticals. For more event details, please visit

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