Press Releases

Laine Hardy, American Idol Winner 2019, will make his charitable debut at BrightFocus Foundation’s awards gala

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Richard Lui, MSNBC, will emcee the research and advocacy awards for diseases of mind and sight.

WHEN: Thursday, June 6, 2019, 6 p.m.

WHERE: Embassy of Italy, 3000 Whitehaven Street, NW Washington, DC

WHAT: BrightFocus Foundation is hosting its fourth annual dinner to celebrate and showcase some of the world’s most promising science to end Alzheimer’s disease, macular degeneration and glaucoma.

Six leading BrightFocus-funded scientists will share their current research during a science demo prior to the awards dinner and program. Researchers from Baylor College of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, New York University School of Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, and the Perlman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania will be available for interviews.


Richard Lui, MSNBC, returns as host and steps into a new role with the organization as its National Brand Ambassador. Richard is personally connected to BrightFocus Foundation’s mission as his father’s caregiver, who has both Alzheimer’s and glaucoma.


Laine Hardy, Winner, American Idol 2019 on ABC, makes his first visit to Washington and his charitable debut, proud to be performing to support BrightFocus Foundation’s scientific research and cause.


Constance A. Morella, former U.S. Representative, Public Leadership Award. Her lasting legacy on science and health, particularly her leadership to require that women are included in NIH-supported clinical research, has opened the door to major discoveries and treatments.

Huda Zoghbi, MD, Baylor College of Medicine, BrightFocus Spotlight: Pioneer in Genetics. Her pioneering work on genetic causes of pediatric neurological diseases, and her current BrightFocus-funded Alzheimer’s research are examples of medical science at its best.

Joel S. Schuman, MD, FACS, New York University of Medicine, Scientific Impact Award.  His groundbreaking discoveries on the genetics of glaucoma, and his role as co-inventor of the optical coherence tomography (OCT) have revolutionized vision care.

BACKGROUND: BrightFocus Foundation is a premier source of private research funding to defeat Alzheimer’s, macular degeneration, and glaucoma. We are currently managing a global portfolio of nearly 200 research projects, a $40 million investment in the bold, innovative science that will find the cures for diseases of mind and sight. We share the latest research findings and best practices to empower families impacted by these diseases. 

RSVP:  Photos and b-roll available to media upon request.