Last night, Autism Speaks was the toast of the town at the Tommy Hilfiger flagship store on 5th Avenue in New York. Tommy and his wife, Dee, both members of the Autism Speaks Board of Directors, graciously hosted a cocktail party in celebration of the launch of the Tommy Hilfiger Kids line and to raise autism awareness and funds for Autism Speaks' research and advocacy efforts. The event was truly a family affair, with kids snacking on cups of ice cream and striking a pose at a flipbook booth that projected animated stop-motion videos. Guests included Autism Speaks Co-founders Bob and Suzanne Wright and celebrity supporters from the New York area, including New York Knicks Jason Kidd and Amar'e Stoudemire and their families, and New York Ranger Brain Boyle. It was also attended by Autism Speaks Board Members Sallie Bernard, Jim Broder, Brian Kelly, Billy Mann and Kevin Murray.
Tommy and Dee each have a child affected by autism and have been committed advocates for the autism community. In September 2010, Tommy and Dee co-hosted Autism Speaks' Third Annual World Focus on Autism, an event that brought together first spouses from around the world to discuss solutions to combat the global crisis of autism. In December 2011, Dee served as co-chair and Tommy was honored at "A Funny Affair," a benefit for Autism Speaks and New York Center for Autism. The event raised $1.3 million for autism research and services for families, thanks in part to the fundraising efforts of Tommy and Dee and the Tommy Hilfiger Corporate Foundation. To kick off Autism Speaks' global Light It Up Blue initiative and World Autism Awareness Day on April 2, 2012, they joined the Wrights and military families affected by autism for a special lighting ceremony at the Empire State Building, illuminating the iconic structure bright blue to raise autism awareness.
Tommy is also featured in a public service announcement (PSA) campaign for Autism Speaks. The PSA
created by the Ad Council and BBDO, highlights the extraordinary one in a million odds Tommy faced in establishing his successful career contrasted with the startling one in 88 odds of having a family member diagnosed with autism. Furthering their commitment to the autism community, Tommy and Dee and the Tommy Hilfiger Corporate Foundation recently awarded Autism Speaks significant grants for 2012.
[slideshow:2, order=top, width=600, height=540, img=|/sites/default/files/images/blog/lauren_brian_boyle_porschla_kidd_noah_kidd_dee_tommy-hilfiger_amare_stoudemire_jr_jason_kidd_chance_kidd_amare_stoudemire_are_stoudemire_assata_stoudemire_alexis_welch.jpg|||Lauren Boyle\, Brian Boyle\, Porschla Kidd\, Noah Kidd\, Dee and Tommy Hilfiger\, Amar'e Stoudemire\, Jr.\, Jason Kidd\, Chance Kidd\, Amar'e Stoudemire\, Ar'e Stoudemire\, Assata Stoudemire\, Alexis Welch ||, img=|/sites/default/files/images/blog/amare_stoudemire_brian_boyle.jpg|||Amar'e Stoudemire and Brian Boyle||, img=|/sites/default/files/images/blog/tommy-hilfiger_porschla_kidd_jason_kidd.jpg|||Tommy Hilfiger\, Porschla Kidd\, Jason Kidd ||, img=|/sites/default/files/images/blog/tommy-hilfiger-and-brian-boyle.jpg|||Tommy Hilfiger and Brian Boyle ||, img=|/sites/default/files/images/blog/jason_kidd_amare_stoudemire_tommy-hilfiger_brian_boyle_chance_kidd_amare_stoudemire_jr.jpg|||Jason Kidd\, Amar'e Stoudemire\, Tommy Hilfiger\, Brian Boyle\, Chance Kidd\, Amar'e Stoudemire\, Jr. ||, img=|/sites/default/files/images/blog/suzanne-and-bob-wright_tommy-and-dee-hilfiger.jpg|||Suzanne and Bob Wright\, Tommy and Dee Hilfiger||]