Proceeds Top $1.418 Million at 2019 Tiger Ball: Celebrating Asia Society's 40th Anniversary in Houston

Gala Exceeds Previous Fundraising Records and Honors Memory of Co-Founder Barbara Bush

HOUSTON, March 4, 2019 — Tiger Ball 2019: Celebrating Asia Society’s 40th Anniversary in Houston, paid homage on March 1 to the memory of Founding Member Barbara Bush. The event also recognized honorees Phoebe and Bobby Tudor and was chaired by co-chairs Michelle and Hector Herrera and Y. Ping Sun and David Leebron, as well as honorary chairs The Honorable Hushang and Shahla Ansary, Maria and Neil Bush, and Molly and Jim Crownover. The proceeds topped $1.418 million, breaking previous Tiger Ball fundraising records, as well as exceeding this year’s goal by more than $100,000.

As the 670 guests arrived, they proceeded along the red carpet into the Asia Society Texas Center facility, which was thematically decorated and is itself an award-winning work of art (designed by famed architect Yoshio Taniguchi).

Dancers from Huaxing Arts Group and Samskriti lit the way with Asian lanterns to the lavishly decorated 82’x180’ Chevron Gala Pavilion covering 1,700 square feet of the Asia Society parking lot. A 10’-tall archway flanked by enormous candelabras greeted guests, and inside, the Pavilion was adorned with a 60’ video wall, ambient projections of wishing lanterns, a water piece decorated with a traditional leogryph (the Asia Society emblem), 8’-tall custom-built cast-iron wishing lanterns suspended from ceiling, as well as lighting festooning the 13 live oak and Shumard red oak trees that are a part of the property.

A sumptuous Pan-Asian dinner, including curried apple and cauliflower soup with poached shrimp and miso soy glazed Chilean sea bass, was served in the Pavilion (overseen by a remarkable 130 City Kitchen staff members), followed by a brief program utilizing a ceremonial candle-lighting to honor the memory of ASTC’s Founding Member Barbara Bush. After dinner, guests returned to the ASTC building for dessert and dancing.

In addition to the Ball honorees, honorary chairs, and chairs, special guests included Nancy Allen, Muffet Blake & Bob Murray, Laurie & Milton Boniuk, Kristy & Chris Bradshaw, Divya & Chris Brown, Leslie & Brad Bucher, Diane & Mike Cannon, Anne & Albert Chao, Monjula & Ravi Chidambaram, Julie & John Cogan, Anne & Charles Duncan, Chinhui Juhn & Eddie Allen, Diane Lokey Farb, Lily & Charles Foster, Rachel & Bud Frazier, Jo & Jim Furr, Kathy & Glen Gondo, Kathy & Marty Goossen, Marie & Vijay Goradia, David Harvey, Vicki & Bob Harvey, Maynard & Kathleen Holt, Nancy & Erik Littlejohn, Sultana & Moez Mangalji, Duyen & Marc Nguyen, Hong & Dorion Ogle, Cabrina & Steven Owsley, Alison & Chris Porter, Sylvia & Gordon Quan, Leigh & Reggie Smith, Starlee Sykes & Al Vickers, Stephanie & Frank Tsuru, Mayor Sylvester Turner, Mary & Roger Wallace (founding chairman), Brenda & Marc Watts, Margaret Alkek Williams, and Lynn Wyatt, plus members of the diplomatic corps from Australia, China, France, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, and TECO.

The highlights of big board auction included the opportunity to throw the first pitch at an Astros game; a week’s stay in the Tudor family’s 10-bedroom Nantucket home with ocean views, infinity pool, and spa bathrooms; luxury accommodations in NYC, with exclusive tours at the Big Apple’s most famous museums; two sets of first-class United airfare to Asia, Australia, New Zealand, India, or the Middle East; dinner for 10 with Rice University president Dr. David W. Leebron and first lady Y. Ping Sun in their 1920’s mansion; designer handbags by Versace, Valentino, and Alexander McQueen; artwork by Japanese painter/woodworker Ayomi Yoshida; jewelry by Tiffany & Co., Chopard, David Yurman, Mariquita Masterson, and a necklace boasting 73 pearls honoring the 73-year long marriage of Barbara and George Bush, by Texas designer Becky Hollands. The auction items were valued at almost $195,000. 

The décor choice revolved around the symbolic 40th anniversary motif (ruby). The variety of roses included black magic, freedom, big fun, and coral reef, plus Calla lilies, red tulips, hand-dyed willow eucalyptus, and curly willow. A full complement of top-shelf talent created this year’s Tiger Ball, including décor by Prashe, tent by Aztec Events & Rentals, lighting by GTX Productions, catering by City Kitchen, and DJ’ing by DJ Senega of Karma DJs.

Proceeds from the Tiger Ball support Asia Society Texas Center’s 150+ public programs each year. Next year’s Tiger Ball will be held in March 2020, honoring legendary Houston philanthropist Lynn Wyatt.

View more photos on Flickr.

Press Coverage

Asia Society's Tiger Ball raises record $1.4 million in salute to Barbara BushHouston Chronicle. March 2, 2019.
Tiger Ball 2019—庆祝亚洲协会德州中心成立40周年Fly Dragon Media. March 2, 2019.
亚洲协会得州中心服务休斯敦40年 2019老虎晚会空前成功(99图). World Hall of Fame. March 2, 2019.
亚洲协会德州中心庆40周年 纪念创始人芭芭拉•布什. Sinovision. March 2, 2019.
Houston's A-listers glow at lavish and exotic $1.4 million Tiger BallCultureMap. March 6, 2019.
Proceeds top $1.4M at 2019 Tiger BallVoice of Asia. March 7, 2019.
Houston's Tiger Ball Roars — $1.4 Million Gala Paints City Ruby Red, Celebrates Barbara BushPaper City. March 8, 2019.
Asia Society Texas Center Celebrates 'Fabulous Forty' raising $1.4 Million at annual Tiger BallLCAHouston. March 11, 2019.
Honoring a Memory: Tiger Ball 2019 celebrates Asia Society's 40th anniversary in Houston and pays tribute to Barbara BushCKW Luxe. March 12, 2019.
Tiger Ball 2019: Celebrates Asia Society Houston's 40th AnniversaryIndo American News. March 16, 2019.

About Asia Society Texas Center

With 13 locations throughout the world, Asia Society is the leading educational organization promoting mutual understanding and strengthening partnerships among the peoples, leaders, and institutions of Asia and West. Asia Society Texas Center executes the global mission with a local focus, enriching and engaging the vast diversity of Houston through innovative, relevant programs in arts and culture, business and policy, education, and community outreach.

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