Action Awards Virtual Gala Rated Fun-For-All Success!

Every year the Allergy Advocacy Association Action Awards honor individuals that personify our program of Awareness, Alertness and Action.

Display of the Gala Awards

Action Awards Virtual Gala Rated a Fun-For-All Success!

By Jon Terry
November 15th, 2020

The Allergy Advocacy Association Gala was broadcasted virtually on Wednesday, October 21st. This year the theme of our Allergy Action Awards was a celebration of Halloween featuring "Tricks" rather than "Treats!" Since we were using the world wide web for the very first time we can’t say exactly how many people joined our celebration. We can only hope everyone else had as much fun as we did. Many thanks to one and all who helped make our Virtual Gala & Silent Auction so successful!

Gala Hostess, Brenda Tremblay

This year Brenda Tremblay acted hostess and EMCEE for our celebration. Ms. Tremblay is the (very early!) morning host at WXXI Classical 91.5 FM. Our association is very grateful to Brenda for taking time away from her day job to help our cause. She was a positively wonderful hostess; by wearing a series of very stylish (and humorous!) Halloween hats Brenda established a wonderfully whimsical mood. Brenda's contributions of her time and energy to our association are greatly appreciated!

The highlight of our gala was honoring Jared Saiontz and Syed Shahzad Mustafa MD with our Allergy Action Awards for 2020. Their activism and advocacy for families and individuals with life threatening allergies at risk for anaphylaxis serves as a power of example for everyone.

Dr. Shahzad Mustafa and Jon Terry
Dr. Shahzad Mustafa and Jon Terry

Dr. Mustafa received the John J. Condemi MD award for "outstanding community engagement and service." Our association recognized Shahzad as a truly exceptional physician; his many endeavors in western New York have improved life and health for many families in our food allergy community.

Shahzad is an allergist at the Rochester Regional Health Group and an assistant professor of medicine at U-R School of Medicine. His professional life is closely related to his family life; one of his kids has a life-threatening food allergy.

Stacey and Jared Saiontz
Stacey and Jared Saiontz

Jared Saiontz (and his mom Stacey) received the Ruthie T. Cornell award for "outstanding community advocacy and education." Jared has had life-threatening allergies and asthma almost since birth. He and Stacey have regularly attended events in Albany and Washington DC supporting families and individuals with life-threatening allergies. Even though Jared is a young man, he has successfully advocated for important legislation at the local, state, and national level. The laws he has helped enact improve access to life-saving epinephrine in central schools across New York State.

Regarding contributions and successful bids for our silent auction items, we are very pleased with the many generous donations our association received from so many of our supporters. Proceeds from donations will be used for our anaphylaxis emergency training program; grants and gifts to non-profit entities seeking to stock epinephrine auto-injectors and research and education programs in our community.

If you were unable to join us, you can view the video directly above. You can also find it on our Facebook page and YouTube channel.

The Allergy Advocacy Association will look forward to seeing you at our next Allergy Action Awards Gala in the fall of 2021!


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