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Black Tie International:
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Los Angeles
Photos by:  Vince Bucci
Tiffany Siart (President & CEO, BBBSLA), honoree Nicole Lorey, honoree Kate Nichols, Laura Lizer (Chairman of the Board of Directors, BBBSLA) and host Amber Valletta.  Photo by:  Vince Bucci
Tiffany Siart (President & CEO, BBBSLA), honoree Nicole Lorey, honoree Kate Nichols, Laura Lizer (Chairman of the Board of Directors, BBBSLA) and host Amber Valletta




Amber Valletta Emceed

Emcee Amber Valletta.  Photo by:  Vince Bucci
Emcee Amber Valletta
Actor Gregg Daniel (True Blood), Little Brother Nolan and his Big Brother Mathew Baltzell.  Photo by:  Vince Bucci
Actor Gregg Daniel (True Blood), Little Brother Nolan and his Big Brother Mathew Baltzell
Miss California USA Natasha Martinez.  Photo by: Vince Bucci
Miss California USA Natasha Martinez
Bigs and Littles modeling on stage.  Photo by:  Vince Bucci
Bigs and Littles modeling on stage


LOS ANGELES, CA (April 28, 2015) — Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Los Angeles (BBBSLA) presented its annual Accessories for Success Spring Luncheon & Fashion Show, April 17, 2015 at The Beverly Wilshire Hotel.  Afternoon honored Nicole Lorey, VP and Chief Communications Officer, Transamerica Brokerage with the “Innovator Award” and Kate Nichols, Digital Marketing Producer, CBS Marketing with the “Rising Star Award.” Actress and fashion icon Amber Valletta hosted.  Laura Lizer, BBBSLA Board Chair; NJ Goldston; Nancy Taylor; Nina Shaw; Sharon Harroun Peirce and Sandra Stern were Honorary Co-Chairs..

In a unique twist to this year’s fashion show, 12 “Bigs” and “Littles” participated in the fashion show in partnership with Goodwill Southern California.  Each “Big” and “Little” selected his or her outfit and accessories from a Goodwill store, with a maximum budget of $30 each. This aspect also aligns with an education initiative by Goodwill pegged at developing self-sufficiency in youth and the importance of shopping within a budget.  Marking their 60th anniversary this year, BBBSLA recently joined forces with Goodwill Southern California (GSC), establishing their new offices at the Goodwill Community Enrichment Center at Fletcher Square in Los Angeles. Co-locating with Goodwill affords BBBSLA and their families a host of benefits including workforce development, career training and placement programming.

In recognition of the new alliance between BBBSLA and Goodwill Southern California, current Miss California USA Natasha Martinez introduced a video highlighting the multi-faceted dimensions of Goodwill.

Actor/director Gregg Daniel welcomed the nearly 200 guests before introducing the afternoon’s host, Amber Valletta, entering the stage to the strains of Pharrell Williams, “Happy.”  She was joined by BBBSLA President and Chief Executive Officer, Tiffany Siart who celebrated the afternoon’s honorees as  “women of accomplishment, not only in the board room, but in the all important world of philanthropy.  Each is a role model for our young women and both are dedicated to supporting our efforts to create brighter futures through life-changing mentoring relationships to all children who need and
want them.” 

“Rising Star Award” honoree Kate Nichols was presented her award by her “Little Sister,” Cambria, 17. As Digital Marketing producer with CBS Marketing for the past three years, Nichols began her career in television as a production assistant with E! Entertainment before joining OWN, Oprah Winfrey’s cable network, as a producer with their on-air marketing department.  Originally from Marietta, GA, her move to Los Angeles prompted a desire to give back to her new community.  Her commitment to Big Brothers Big Sisters was born of the many powerful testimonials she heard from “Bigs” and “Littles,” eventually

becoming a Big Sister herself. Nichols’ involvement with the organization grew as she became a member of their Junior Board, serving as Vice Chair for the past two years. She will soon take on the role of Chair. Her enthusiasm for BBBSLA has carried over into her workplace, where she helped establish a mentoring program at CBS.

Elise Buik, President and CEO of United Way of Greater Los Angeles, presented the “Innovator Award” to Nicole Lorey, Vice President and Chief Communications Officer for Transamerica Life Insurance Company (TLIC), an AEGON company and Transamerica Brokerage, a marketing unit for TLIC and its affiliates.  Lorey is responsible for all internal and external communications, meetings and special events, philanthropy and organizational development.  Joining Transamerica in 2000 as Director, Corporate Communications, she was elected Assistant VP, Communications & Organizational Development in 2007, before being named Vice President in 2011.  Previously, Lorey worked in Public Affairs and Communications for Kaiser Permanente as well as stints with Read Communications and Cynthia Michael Public Relations.  An active member of the BBBSLA Board of Directors, she spearheaded a BBBSLA program at 20th Street Elementary School in South LA, providing students with activities, mentors and school supplies each year. 


About Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Los Angeles

In Los Angeles County, one in five children is living below the federal poverty line and one in three children is living in a single-parent household. These children are faced with overwhelming challenges that often derail their futures. BIG BROTHERS BIG SISTERS OF GREATER LOS ANGELES changes children’s lives (our Littles) for the better, forever, through professionally supported one-on-one mentoring relationships in the community-at-large, at schools and at corporate sites. Mentorship by caring adults (our Bigs) has proven effective in significantly increasing academic performance and self-esteem while decreasing risky behaviors. Founded by Walt Disney and Meredith Willson in 1955, they are a leading non-profit in the Los Angeles community. To learn more, visit, follow on Twitter at, Facebook at and on Instagram at



joyce brooks, gerard mckeon.  photo by:  rose billings

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