The Southern Florida and Puerto Rico Chapter of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society has announced the winners of its 2013 Man and Woman of the Year campaign in Miami where a total of $187,000 was raised by all candidates.
Alejandro Mendieta, senior financial consultant for Amtrust Bank, was crowned the Miami Man of the Year (He raised $34,000.) and Alexandra “Alix” Arguelles, vice president, Online Account Management & Consulting Services for Amadeus North America, was crowned the Miami Woman of the Year. (She raised $72,000.)
“The 2013 Miami Man and Woman of the Year winners and candidates are some of the most devoted volunteers that have ever been involved in the campaign,” said Carolyn A. Cauceglia, vice president of Strategic Sales and Account Management for Amadeus North America and co-chair of the 2013 Man and Woman of the Year Miami campaign.
The Man and Woman of the Year campaign is a 10-week program to raise funds to help find cures for blood cancers. The campaign recruited candidates in the community who agreed to conduct their own fundraising campaigns and compete to earn the coveted title of Man and Woman of the Year. “It was an honor to work with each of their dedicated teams, our committed sponsors and the inspiring Boy and Girl of the Year,” said Roberto R. Muñoz, South and Southwest Florida Market president for BBVA Compass and co-chair of the 2013 Man and Woman of the Year Miami campaign.
Each of the candidates raised funds in honor of the Boy and Girl of the Year, who are local blood cancer patient survivors and sources of inspiration to their families and to others. The 2013 Miami Boy and Girl of the Year were Ryan Pino and Melanie Garcia, respectively.
Ryan was only 20 months old when he was diagnosed with acute lymphocytic leukemia. He was nicknamed “Little Soldier,” having fought and screamed his way through every one of the 18 spinal taps, 11 bone marrow punctures, daily blood tests, and 18 medicines a day. Today, Ryan is a happy, healthy, athletic 13-year-old who has been cancer free for over 10 years.
Melanie was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia shortly after her 14th birthday. She endured weekly hospital stays, bone marrow tests, blood transfusions, lumbar punctures, numerous cycles of chemo and hair loss. Today, Melanie is a positive and happy 10th grader.
Roxanne Vargas, NBC 6 Entertainment host of “6 in the Mix,” was the emcee for the Miami Man and Woman of the Year Journey of Hope Gala on Saturday, Apr. 20, at the InterContinental Miami Hotel.
The 2013 Man and Woman of the Year Miami Campaign Gold Sponsor was the law firm of Shook Hardy & Bacon. Silver Sponsors were Amadeus North America Inc., Travelpapa.com and LPL Financial & New York Community Bank.
For more information about the Southern Florida and Puerto Rico Chapter of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, call 1- 954-744-5313 or visit www.lls.org/sfl.