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FFANY Sets the Stage for Shoes on Sale Gala

Big plans are in the works for the Oct. 13 event.

Tim O’Donovan

Tim O’Donovan

Photo By Courtesy Photo

NEW YORK — Big plans are in the works for the 18th annual QVC Presents “FFANY Shoes on Sale,” set for Oct. 13.

This year marks the event’s return to the Waldorf Astoria and to a sit-down dinner format. In addition, guests will shop in a newly designed shoe salon.

“People like the elegance of the Waldorf, it’s as simple as that. We thought the economy was good enough to go back to it,” said Joe Moore, FFANY president and CEO. “And when you don’t have a sit-down dinner, it’s much more difficult to show your appreciation to the major donors.”

FFANY also has announced the winners of the 2011 Jodi Fisher Humanitarian Award: Tim O’Donovan, former Wolverine World Wide Inc. chairman and CEO; and Nancy Brinker, founder of Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Both recipients will be honored during the gala. The award honors Fisher, the late Shoes On Sale co-founder, who died in 2009.

“This award is for people who have been really philanthropic in their efforts against breast cancer,” Moore said. “Nancy has done a fantastic job. We’re honoring her as someone who’s really made a difference in raising awareness for this disease.”

Brinker founded the nonprofit organization of breast cancer survivors and activists in 1982 after her sister, Susan Komen, died from the disease. Her memoir about the ordeal, “Promise Me,” was a New York Times best seller last year.

“Receiving this award from FFANY is an honor,” Brinker said. “I appreciate its support in the fight against breast cancer.”

O’Donovan, who serves on the board of directors of Spectrum Health Services, the Two Ten Footwear Foundation and Wolverine, is being honored for his philanthropic efforts. Along with his wife, Karen, he also established his own charity, called the O’Donovan Family Foundation, which helps families gain access to social services, medical care, education and the arts.

“It’s very humbling to be selected for an award that’s named after Jodi Fisher. Her story set a great example for all of us [and shows] that one person can make a difference,” O’Donovan said.

Moore said his expectations are high for the fall event, which raised $2.7 million last year for cancer research and more than $35 million over the past 17 years. As with last year, QVC will broadcast its coverage of Shoes on Sale two days after the event, a timeline Moore said worked well. “We were nervous about splitting the event a year ago, but we had an increase [in sales], so we’re not afraid to do it again,” he said.

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