Lovely Lady – Yolanda Berkowitz

 We’re big HEAT fans in our house and attend all the home games. We meet at 6 p.m. so we can have dinner at the arena before the game.

If ever there was a true community presence, Yolanda Berkowitz fits the bill. A wellknown Miami philanthropist, Berkowitz is a board member of the Voices for Children Foundation, is on the United Way of Miami-Dade Board of Directors and is a child advocate with the Guardian Ad Litem Program, among countless other philanthropic involvements in our fair city.

But her breadth of giving back stretches well beyond hosting events and serving on boards. This month, Berkowitz and a group of similarly minded Miami ladies will travel to the earthquake stricken nation of Haiti in conjunction with Project Medishare For Haiti to deliver supplies they’ve collected.

The well-heeled Berkowitz is known in the fashion realm as well, hosting such luxe events as the Neiman Marcus fashion show and the opening of the newly renovated Bottega Veneta boutique in Bal Harbour. This lovely lady let Haute Living peek into a normal day for her, packed full of meetings, philanthropic endeavors and like any Miamian worth their salt, a HEAT game.

8 AM I prepare a cup of tea for myself and prepare food for our cats, Frida, Miss Kitty and Mrs. Kitty. Our pup goes out for a quick walk so I can pick up the newspapers. We live in a little slice of paradise, and I try to stop and take it all in. Turtle and koi are fed at the end of this routine. This is on days when I don’t have a Center for Excellence Committee or United Way Board meetings; in those cases, I’m out the door much earlier.

8:30 AM Time for a workout. Thursdays I do a combination of Pilates and weight training; three other days a week, I schedule a cardio workout while watching a TV show.

10 AM I work on my various projects. This week, it was a fundraiser in our home for Circuit Court Judge Cindy Lederman, a true child advocate and hero. I’m also coordinating and picking up items we’re collecting for a trip to Haiti in conjunction with Project Medishare for Haiti. I’m going with a group of remarkable Miami women who I’m proud to call my friends.

11 AM I try to get a half hour swim lesson in, so I get to be outside in the sun and enjoy the glorious South Florida weather.

12-1 PM I have lunch and, while I try not to eat in front of the computer or at my desk, it seems that this is always where I end up having lunch.

1-5 PM My afternoon is dedicated to various household projects we have going on and to emails or calls on my various commitments. Right now, I’m finishing up my work on the auction committee for the Miami Children’s Museum Gala, as well as working with my husband Jeff on the Mayor’s Ball, which we are co-chairing. I try to dedicate one afternoon a week for uninterrupted time with our 3-yearold granddaughter, Dylan. On these days, Jeff comes home from work early so he gets some quality time with her, as well.

6 PM We’re big HEAT fans in our house and attend all the home games. We meet at 6 p.m. so we can have dinner at the arena before the game. At the arena, we have many dear friends who we’ve met through years of attending games or through other areas of life, so it’s a nice time to catch up with people and cheer for the incomparable HEAT!

11 PM Bedtime is usually about 11 p.m. with the promise of a similarly packed day looming on the other end.