Event honors community difference-makers, raises funds to support NFMMC’s women’s’ services
For a milestone 20th year, Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center is set to host its annual black-tie event, The Premier, on Jan. 20, 2024, at the Seneca Niagara Resort & Casino. Echoing the spirit of the “Roaring ’20s,” this year's "Gala of the Century" theme commemorates NFMMC's 100 years of unwavering service.
As the evening promises to be a mix of nostalgia and aspiration, its purpose goes beyond mere celebration. This year's event proceeds support Memorial's Women's Health Services, which aims to improve health care, promote economic growth, and optimize medical spending in the Niagara Region.
Every year, The Premier also honors individuals who have made a lasting impact and continue to make a difference in the Niagara community. The event's 2024 honorees include:
•Rev. James J. Maher, C.M., the esteemed 26th president of Niagara University, has been chosen to receive the distinguished Nancy Gara Spirit Award. This award honors the late Gara, a respected banking executive and former board member of NFMMC widely admired for her enduring optimism and steadfast commitment to community service.
An NFMMC press release stated, “Since taking on the leadership role at Niagara University in 2013, Father Maher has been instrumental in spearheading various transformative initiatives for the betterment of Niagara Falls. In addition to his responsibilities as president, he serves as a trustee at DePaul University and is an active member of its academic affairs committee. His commitment to fairness in labor and education is evident from his roles in the university and collegiate executive committee of the Fair Labor Association and his significant contributions to the Global Alliance for Workers and Community. He also fulfills responsibilities as a provincial consulter for the Eastern Province of the Congregation of the Mission.”
•Zubair Shaikh, M.D., F.A.C.P. NFMMC said, “An integral part of NFMMC's medical team, Dr. Shaikh boasts an extensive academic trajectory, initiating at the B.J. Medical College (University of Pune, India), and securing a master's from the University of Oregon. His distinguished post-graduate experiences encompass roles at revered institutions like the Johns Hopkins Hospital and the University of Maryland Medical Center.”
•Alicia Scott, D.N.P, N.P.-C.: Associated with NFMMC since 2006, “Dr. Scott has earned a doctorate in nursing practice from Daemen College and holds a distinguished certification from the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners. Her valuable contributions have been instrumental in both the telemetry unit and the Stroke Center.”
Co-chairing the 2024 event are Brian and Karen Oakley of Lewiston.
Maryalice Demler, television journalist and news anchor for WGRZ-TV Channel 2, will once again return to emcee the event.
The Downtown Band will serve as the headline entertainment for the evening. The press release noted, “Lauded as the ‘Best Live Band in Tennessee’ and ranking among the top U.S. party bands, The Downtown Band's résumé includes performances for royalty and legends, including the prince and princess of Monaco, and sharing the stage with legends Elton John and Sting.”
Due to the event's popularity, Premier 2024 tickets are expected to go quickly. For ticketing, sponsorship, and donation inquiries, call 716-278-4605 or email [email protected].