News | Hillsides


Local Prominent Businesswoman Selected as Chair of Hillsides Centennial Gala
Elizabeth Rusnak Arizmendi

(PASADENA, CA) – Hillsides, a children's charity located in Pasadena, announced the selection of Elizabeth Rusnak Arizmendi, Rusnak Auto Group Vice President of Public Relations and a long-time supporter of Hillsides, as the chair of its Centennial Gala. The gala, an annual benefit, will celebrate Hillsides' 100 years of service to the community. It will take place at the landmark hotel, The Langham Huntington, Pasadena, on Saturday, February 23, 2013.

"I am honored to be chairing this exciting event during Hillsides' centennial year to help such a worthy cause that my family has been involved with for over two decades," said Rusnak Arizmendi. "I will make sure it is a night to be remembered."

Joseph M. Costa, Hillsides chief executive officer, is delighted to have Arizmendi on board. "We know her energy, drive, and talent will help make this event, which celebrates a century of restoring hope and preserving families, more spectacular than ever," he said.

For this year's benefit, Rusnak Arizmendi changed the venue to the iconic Langham Huntington, which, with its spacious and elegant ballroom, will be able to accommodate what is expected to be an even larger guest list than usual due to the historic importance of the evening. In addition, she is putting together a leather-bound Hillsides Centennial Tribute Book featuring the organization's new logo, photos and congratulatory letters from local and state politicians, and advertising opportunities.

The gala also features an incredible line-up of honorees and entertainment and a sumptuous gourmet feast. "I guarantee this evening will delight all of your senses—your ears, your eyes, and your taste buds," said Rusnak Arizmendi.

Those being honored include comedian George Lopez, "Celebrity Rehab" talk show host Dr. Drew Pinsky, Paul Rusnak, Chairman/CEO of Rusnak Auto Group, 2003 Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee Marcus Allen, NBC4 weathercaster Fritz Coleman, and  Emmy award-winning actress Jean Smart.

Performers for the evening include the world champion of music, Jason Latimer, violinist Lindsey Stirling, who performs a variety of musical styles from classical to dubstep, Christian Perry from "Dancing with the Stars," and Kristen Renton from the TV show "Sons of Anarchy." Another highlight of the gala is the live auction where guests can bid on once-in-a-lifetime opportunities such as a weekend package that consists of a $5,000 Tiffany & Co gift certificate, dinner for 10 prepared by the Langham Huntington's Chef David Féau and served inside the Tiffany boutique, and a two-night stay at the Langham with a Jaguar from Rusnak Pasadena at their driving pleasure.

"I urge everyone to come be a part of this amazing and historic event," said Rusnak Arizmendi. "Your support will help Hillsides continue to make lasting change in the lives of at-risk children and families and help young people become happy, well-adjusted adults."

The major sponsors of the gala include Rusnak Auto Group, Jaguar North America, Wells Fargo Private Bank, Specialty Car Craft, Susan and Bill Noce, Sherm and Marge Telleen, Black Ltd., Rick and Iby Rouse, Don and Sally Clark, David and Anita Sniezko, BMW North America, Beth Gertmenian, LeeAnn Havner, Jacob Maarse Florists, Kaiser Permanente, Judy and Ben Reiling, and Western Asset Management.

Rusnak Arizmendi, who oversees public relations for Rusnak Auto Group, which includes 11 different brand dealerships at 14 Southern California locations, was an inspirational speaker at the USC Women's Conference 2011 and the Women's Council of Realtors of Southern California 2012. She has been awarded the Congressional Recognition for Outstanding and Invaluable Service to the Community by Congressman Adam B. Schiff, among other distinctions.

Hillsides, founded in 1913, is a premier provider dedicated to improving the overall well-being and functioning of vulnerable children, youth, and their families. The Centennial Gala will raise funds for programs and services that create lasting change in the lives of at-risk children.

For information on the gala, sponsorships, advertisements/tributes to the commemorative Hillsides Anniversary Tribute Book, and event ticket sales, please contact Carrie Espinoza, the associate director of development, at 323-255-9005, ext 254 or

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We provide home-based family care (formerly known as foster care) to help children and youth heal from the effects of trauma. Included in the home-based care are treatment and adoption services for children and youth ranging from newborn to 21 years old. >
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We offer comprehensive family support and individual mental health treatment for children and adolescents, ages 6 to 17. This program includes a Residential Treatment Center (RTC), a Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP), an Intensive Outpatient Program (IOP), as well as coordinated family and aftercare programming. >
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