Gracie & Bob Cavnar, Kase & Eileen Lawal, honorees Sultana & Moez Mangalgi, Bonna Kol at Asia Society Texas Center's Tier Ball (Photo by Daniel Ortiz)
Asia Society Texas Center Tiger Ball salutes India with a dinner/dance fundraiser that played out in decorative splendor in salute to India. (Photo by Shelby Hodge)
David Leebron & Y. Ping Sun at Asia Society Texas Center Tiger Ball (Photo by PEJ)
Asia Society Texas Center Tiger Ball honorary chairs Whitney & Jim Crane
Tiger Ball 2021: Incredible India! in Houston on Friday, June 11, 2021, at Asia Society Texas Center. Asia Society’s annual gala honored Sultana and Moez Mangalji.
Shahla & Hushang Ansary at Asia Society Texas Center Tiger Ball
David Webster & Rose Chen, Sylvia & Gordon Quan (Photo by PEJ)
Cameron & Morgan Neal (Photo by PEJ)
Anne & Albert Chao (Photo by PEJ)
Tripp Carter, Nancy Allen, and Leslie & Brad Bucher
Chinhui Juhn & Eddie Allen
Uwem & Eno Upkong (Photo by PEJ)
Crystal Anderson, David Peck, Alyssa Pasek
Hallie Vanderhider, Fady Armanious (Photo by Daniel Ortiz)
Marty & Kathy Goossen (Photo by PEJ)
Mona Khan, Aisha Jokhio, Yoon Smith
Jaewon Kang & Robert Gondo, Glen & Kathy Gondo (Photo by PEJ)
Richard Flowers, Lynn Wyatt at Asia Society Texas Center Tiger Ball (Photo by PEJ)
Kenny & Janae Tsai, Divya & Chris Brown (Photo by PEJ)
Zachary Foster, Lily & Charles Foster, Anthony Foster, Rachael Wiggans
Durger & Sushila Agrawal (Photo by Daniel Ortiz)
Bobby & Phoebe Tudor (Photo by PEJ)
Chris & Andi Richardson (Photo by PEJ)
Roberto Contreras, China Contreras, Zachary Foster, Livy Yang & Victor Lee (Photo by PEJ)
Jim & Molly Crownover (Photo by Daniel Ortiz)
Scott & Judy Nyquist (Photo by Daniel Ortiz)
Shiang-Ling & George Yang (Photo by Daniel Ortiz)
A Bollywood-handsome guest dancing at Asia Society Texas Center Tiger Ball (Photo by Daniel Ortiz)
The Events Company dressed the Asia Society Texas Center gala pavilion in myriad flowers and a panoply of silk saris overhead (Photo by Daniel Ortiz)
The visuals were striking: arches of fuschia bougainvillea, an overhead panoply of vibrant saris, profusions of fresh flowers and the luminescent costuming of guests. But even more compelling at Asia Society Texas Center’s Tiger Ball was the message of global unity delivered so eloquently by Moez Mangalji who with his wife, Sultana, were the evening’s honorees.
With “Incredible India” as the theme, the Mangaljis, of Indian origin, clearly represented Asia Society‘s mission of promoting mutual understanding and strengthening partnerships between Asia and the West.
Theirs is the story of successful immigrants born in Uganda of Ismaili Muslim faith, educated in England, expelled with other Asians from Uganda in the early ’70s, and having lived in England, Canada, Japan, India and other countries before arriving in Houston four decades ago. Today, Moez is a principal in the family-owned Westmont Hospitality Group, the largest privately-owned hotel group in the world .
“We have learned some of the best lessons in life from our friends from different cultures,” he says. “In fact, I believe we are all global citizens. We all live in an increasingly interconnected world and all of us embody the values of pluralism and interconnectedness. ”
The interconnectedness and splendid diversity of Houston was evident in the glittering national dress worn by the 520 guests who gathered in the “gala pavilion,” a massive tent erected on the Asia Society parking lot and decorated to the aforementioned hilt by The Events Company. In a salute to the honored country, many donned classic Indian attire. For those who might have chosen other national dress or opted for the requisite black-tie, Asia Society was ready with traditional silk scarves for the gents and colorful bangle bracelets for the ladies.
The success of this evening could be measured not only in the exceptional congeniality of guests (for many, it was the first post-pandemic outing) but also by the $1.3 million that was raised for Asia Society. Helming the colorful evening were gala chairs Gracie and Bob Cavnar, Claudia and Roberto Contreras, and Eileen and Kase Lawal. Among honorary chairs attending were Whitney and Jim Crane, Asha and Farid Virani and Nidhika and Pershant Mehta.
Guests also had the opportunity to provide support for the COVID-19 crisis in India through the Aga Khan Development Network’s pandemic relief efforts. The Mangaljis are deeply involved with the Aga Khan Foundation in which both have held leadership positions both internationally and regionally.
It was a lively evening that included a Bollywood-inspired dance presentation by Los Angeles-based Karmagraphy, a lavish Indian-themed dinner from City Kitchen and post-dinner dancing to the Bollywood spins of DJ Yogi of Karma DJs.
PC Seen: Asia Society president Bonna Kol, Asia Society board chair Y. Ping Sun and David Leebron, founding chair Roger Wallace and Mary Wallace, Nancy Allen, Sushila and Durga Agrawal, Laurie and Milton Boniuk, Divya and Chris Brown, Leslie and Brad Bucher, Anne and Albert Chao, Rose Chen and David Webster, Monjula and Ravi Chidambaram, Sneha and Nick Merchant, Lily and Charles Foster, Kathy and Glen Gondo, Phoebe and Bobby Tudor, Lynn Wyatt, Kathy and Marty Goossen, and Pakistani Consul General Abrar H. Hashmi and Sami Hashmi.