South Miami Hospital 54th Annual Mercury Ball
Benefiting South Miami Hospital Foundation
Bruce Wirtz MacArthur and Veronica Flores, representing presenting sponsor, First National Bank of South Miami, with Wayne Brackin

William H. Banchs, Yerby Barker and Lincoln Mendez

On March 1, 2014, South Miami Hospital’s 54th annual Mercury Ball raised more than $430,000 for the Child Development Center Endowment. The Center provides diagnostic and early intervention services to help babies born with complications, as well as children who have or are at risk for developmental delays and disabilities. Babies admitted to South Miami Hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit are also offered follow-up care at the Center.

Former patient Ricky Zeichner spoke to the audience of 500 guests, expressing gratitude for the Center and its staff, who helped him overcome developmental obstacles. Now a teenager, Mr. Zeichner became a patient of the Center when he was an infant.

The black-tie affair transformed the Grand Ballroom of the JW Marriott Marquis into a “Cirque du Safari” atmosphere resembling an African savannah with circus-themed entertainment. Music was provided by “The Headliners”. The event was hosted by South Miami Hospital Associates, community and business leaders who are goodwill ambassadors and fundraisers for the Hospital, and South Miami Hospital Foundation. First National Bank of South Miami served as the Presenting Sponsor; Kidz Medical Services served as Title Sponsor. Other notable sponsors included Cisco / Presidio, Bacardi, Florida Heart Care, Inc., Intuitive Surgical, South Miami Inpatient Physicians, Inc., South Miami Criticare Inc., Riviera Health Resort, Pulmonary Group of South Florida, and Radiology Associates of South Florida.

Proceeds from event table sales, silent and live auctions and a request for contributions at the event contributed to the evening’s fundraising success. Funds will assist in building a $10 million endowment to assist with the Center’s operational needs. Private funding subsidizes the costs associated with helping children achieve their full potential.

Charles K. Miller was chair of the Mercury ball; Dorcas and Anthony Gonzalez, M.D., were co-chairs. Individuals honored during the evening included Person of the Year Yvonne Johnson, M.D. and Philanthropic Volunteer of the Year William “Billy” Baldwin.

South Miami Hospital is part of Baptist Health, South Florida’s largest faith-based, not-for-profit healthcare organization. The Baptist Health system includes Baptist, Baptist Children’s, Doctors, Homestead, West Kendall Baptist and Mariners Hospitals, as well as Baptist Cardiac & Vascular Institute, Baptist Outpatient Services and Baptist Health Enterprises. Baptist Health Foundation supports services at all hospitals and facilities affiliated with Baptist Health through fundraising.

To support the South Miami Hospital Child Development Center, please call 786-662-8206 or e-mail

Mercury Ball chair, Charles Miller and his wife Gabriela Miller, with Mercury Ball co-chairs, Dorcas and Anthony Gonzalez, M.D.

Dr. Albert Tano and Dr. Jorge E. Perez, receive an award on behalf of Mercury Ball title sponsor, Kidz Medical Services.

Yerby and Pam Barker with Dr. Yvonne Johnson, 2014 person of the year, and her son A.J. Johnson

Pedro and Veronica Flores with Patricia Birch and Jorge Blanco

Mike Pennie, representing Mercury Ball corporate silver supporting sponsor, Intuitive Surgical Inc.

Kerry Perez and Jorge E. Perez, M.D., representing Mercury Ball title sponsor, Kidz Medical Services

Dr. Jonathan and Alyse Messinger

Irma Baldwin and William “Billy” Baldwin, 2014 philanthropic volunteer of the year.

Dr. Ismael Roque-Velasco and Richard Stacey

Dr. Ghassan and Zeina Haddad

Scott and Erin Aaron

Ian Reiss, M.D. and Jill Rappaport

Susan and Michael Meister, M.D., with Marjorie and Jeremy Tabak, M.D.

Bonnie Muller and Lois Russell

Leslie and Joseph Buchanan

Kathy and Nathan B. Hirsch, M.D.

Ricky Zeichner, Mercury Ball guest speaker, and co-emcee Jaycee Birch, of WPLG Channel 10

Annerys and Orlando Roche

Joseph and Dr. Tina Scott, along with some of the “Cirque du Safari” entertainers

Rudy Kranys and Lois Russell

Dr. Juan Carlos Pereda, Ena Pereda, along with Leah and Cham Jayanetti, M.D.

Abby and Alex Vicencio

Judith Barrios with David Goss and Debbie Zorian

Dr. Ricardo and Ana Cury

Dr. Edgardo Reyes-Ayala, Brenda Gonzalez , Lincoln Mendez, America Mendez, Vicky Rabaza, and Dr. Jorge Rabaza

Dr. Shawn Samuels, Sharon Samuels, Shaida Brackin, Wayne Brackin along with Dr. Jorge and Kerry Perez

Becky and Albert Santalo

Ben Mollere, Dr. Susan Sureen Chi, Eris Thomas, and Robert Berrin

Annie Martinez-Lopez with gala co-chairs Dr. Anthony and Dorcas Gonzalez

Bill Banchs, Laura Denoux present award to Veronica Flores and Bruce Wirtz MacArthur of presenting sponsor, First National Bank of South Miami

Gabriela Miller and gala chair, Charles Miller