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Scenes from The University of Rhode Island

Tickets available now for 15th Winter Gala, silent and live auction

Media Contact: Jhodi Redlich, 401-874-4500

Online bidding of several auction items before the event

KINGSTON, R.I. -- December 5, 2005 -- Break the ice this January with other University of Rhode Island alumni and friends at the 15th Winter Gala. Sponsored by the University’s Alumni Association, the event will take place on Saturday, Jan. 28, 2006 at the Hyatt Regency in Newport. A pre-gala reception will run from 6 to 7:30 p.m., followed by the main event from 7:30 p.m. to 1 a.m.

The gala features dinner, dancing to the music of Cover to Cover, and a program that includes silent and live auctions. Tickets cost $125 each for the main event and an additional $75 per person for the pre-gala reception. Space is limited.

To give those who cannot attend the Gala an opportunity to participate, there will be online bidding for some auction items from Jan 4. to Jan. 25. For more information on this opportunity go online to www.advance.uri.edu/alumni.

The Winter Gala is the Alumni Association’s largest fund-raising activity. Usually sold out, the event attracts more than 500 guests and raises about $100,000 for student scholarships. Alumni and friends are advised to make their reservations early by calling Kristal Cardone, assistant director of Alumni Relations at 401-874-4536 or kristal@uri.edu. The RSVP deadline is Jan. 20, 2006.

About this year’s Winter Gala Chairs: Wesley and Dianne Kenny Card.

Wesley “Wes” Card (URI 1970) and his wife Dianne (URI 1969) are no strangers to the URI community. In addition to serving as honorary chairs for this year’s gala, they are also the volunteer chairs of the University’s Alumni Fund, which raises funds for undergraduate scholarships, faculty development programs, and alumni communications and events.

“Financial support is a major need of the University,” Wes said last year when he was named chair of the Alumni Fund. “We need to give back and help support the current student body.”

An East Greenwich native who graduated from URI with a degree in accounting, Wes is the chief operating and financial officer of Jones Apparel Group, Inc. A Fortune 500 company, Jones Apparel is the leading designer and marketer of branded apparel, accessories, and footwear. Its brands include Jones New York, Nine West, Mootsies Tootsies, Anne Klein, and Barney’s New York. He started there in 1990 and has watched it grow from a small $200-million company with 700 employees to a $5-billion company with almost 19,000 employees.

Wes and Dianne, a Warwick native, met on a blind date at URI. Dianne, who was a member of the Alpha Delta Pi sorority, graduated with a degree in physical education. They now live north of Boston.

In addition to their generous financial support of the Alumni Fund, the Ballentine Hall renovation project, and the Vangermeersch Endowment, the Cards have been active members of the Massachusetts Alumni Club and Wes is a past member of the URI College of Business Administration Advisory Council.