The Challenged Athletes Foundation is due for a trip to the top of the Olympic medal podium. CAF, which encourages the physically handicapped to realize their sporting dreams–and provides the tools with which they can do it–raised an impressive $1.4 million at its June 13 benefit at the Waldorf-Astoria. Nearly 900 guests, including Dr. Sanjay Gupta and Aviva Drescher of “The Real Housewives of New York City” attended the “Celebration of Heroes, Heart and Hope” gala. Gala founder and chairman and CAF board member Scott Stackman is perpetually impressed with the organization’s growth. “Each year I find myself moved and honored by the support I receive from the New York community,” Stackman said. “The energy and passion that fills the room is indescribable and a testament to the desire and willpower of these athletes.”
Inspired by an Ironman race in Kona in memory of his late father, Stackman dedicated himself to helping disabled athletes cross the finish line. A good deal of CAF’s proceeds go to providing challenged sportsmen and women with top-of-the-line, and expensive, prosthetics. A highlight of the evening was the auction in which $350,000 was raised to fund Össur running feet for amputees, and $31,000 to fund handcycles and sportchairs. Stackman looks forward to seeing even more New Yorkers at the seventh annual CAF gala next year.