The MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center Foundation is celebrating decades of innovation by naming the MemorialCare Heart & Vascular Institute at Long Beach Medical Center as the 2020 Dancing for Our Stars beneficiary. This year’s gala is presented by Title Sponsor Don Temple Family Charitable Foundation.

“Our MemorialCare Heart & Vascular Institute was built on a foundation of innovation, knowledge and expertise,” says John Bishop, CEO, Long Beach Medical Center. “Our care teams are dedicated to creating a pulsing legacy in expert cardiovascular care. I’m excited to celebrate the past and future successes of our heart and vascular care at this year’s Dancing for Our Stars.”

The MemorialCare Heart & Vascular Institute has a rich history of pioneering cardiovascular diagnostics and treatments, including exercise stress testing and pacemakers. The program continues to advance heart and vascular research through innovative clinical trials and a team of dedicated professionals, who offer minimally invasive surgical procedures to treat and replace heart valves. Recently, Long Beach Medical Center added two new cardiovascular surgeons, Drs. Marc Sakwa and Jeffrey Altshuler, who perform less invasive approaches to many aspects of aortic, cardiovascular and valve issues.

This year’s event features dancers from the community who either have been personally touched by heart disease, or have a desire to support leading-edge heart and vascular care. Each dancer will partner with a professional dancer or significant other to perform an enthralling dance to a popular song from any era of their choice. Supporters and event attendees will have an opportunity to support their favorite dancer(s) by “voting with their dollars” prior to and during the event as dancers perform original-choreographed dances in front of anticipated audience of more than 600.

“Our dancers will not only raise critical funds to enhance our heart and vascular capabilities, but have a unique opportunity to honor loved ones affected by heart disease,” says Sharon Thornton, president, MemorialCare Long Beach Medical Center Foundation. “We are grateful to our dancers for their dedication, courage and creative spirit.”

This year’s dancers are: Wayne Chaney Sr., Long Beach Firefighter; Marcelle Epley, president and CEO, Long Beach Community Foundation; Jan Rice, sales account director; Sofia Riley, president, TGIS Catering Services, Inc.; and Robert Senske, Jr., co-founder, and renowned Long Beach artist. Hosts Regina Cash and Clint Hufft will be joined by a panel of judges – Natalie Barron, Justin Rudd and Mike Van Dyke II.

“We’re honored to be this year’s beneficiary,” says Marc Sakwa, M.D., medical director, adult cardiovascular surgery, MemorialCare Heart & Vascular Institute, Long Beach Medical Center. “The MemorialCare Heart & Vascular Institute is a longtime leader in advanced cardiovascular care. The funds raised at this year’s event will help us continue that legacy and ensure the beat goes on.”

“Dancing for Our Stars” is on Saturday, March 14 at 5 p.m. at the Hyatt Regency Long Beach. Tickets and donation opportunities are available.