16th Annual Dick Vitale Gala Confirms Celebrity Guests from Sports and Entertainment

Event to Fund Cutting-Edge Pediatric Cancer Research

CARY, N.C. (April 12, 2021) – The V Foundation for Cancer Research, a top-rated cancer research charity, and ESPN Hall of Fame Sportscaster Dick Vitale are pleased to announce an extensive list of celebrities that are scheduled to attend the 16th Annual Dick Vitale Gala on May 7 at the Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota in Florida. Each year, Vitale recruits the biggest names in sports and entertainment to his event. His goal is to raise the awareness and support needed to defeat pediatric cancer. Vitale is a true champion for the cause, raising over $37 million to date for the pediatric fund in his name at the V Foundation.

“We are excited and thrilled that our Gala will be live at the Ritz-Carlton Resort,” said Vitale. “We’ll have another magical evening fundraising to help kids battling cancer. Our many generous sponsors and sports celebrities have answered our call for support. For those who can’t make it in person, a donation can still be made at dickvitaleonline.com to support pediatric cancer research funded by the V Foundation.”

This year’s event will honor former University of Notre Dame Women’s Head Basketball Coach Muffet McGraw, University of Florida Head Football Coach Dan Mullen, Auburn University Men’s Head Basketball Coach Bruce Pearl and ESPN “SportsCenter” Anchor Scott Van Pelt. Vitale will also recognize ESPN Senior NFL Analyst Chris Mortensen with the V Foundation John Saunders Courage Award. Others scheduled to attend the Gala are ESPN “SportsCenter” Anchor Kevin Negandhi; Tampa Bay Buccaneers Head Coach Bruce Arians; former Notre Dame football coach and sports analyst Lou Holtz; Baylor Men’s Head Basketball Coach Scott Drew; professional aerialists, daredevils and acrobats Nik and Erendira Wallenda; ESPN “SportsCenter” Anchor Chris Berman; sports analyst and former professional basketball coach Mike Fratello; Emmy award-winning Fox 8 News Anchor Stefani Schaefer; retired Belmont University basketball coach Rick Byrd; former NFL player Todd Johnson; basketball Hall-of-Famer, co-founder of the NBA’s Orlando Magic and former general manager of the Philadelphia 76ers Pat Williams; former professional basketball player Marcus Liberty; former football cornerback for the San Diego Chargers and the Philadelphia Eagles Willie Clark; former Baltimore Ravens player Rob Robertson; former All-American Notre Dame basketball player Gary Brokaw; ESPN Play-by-Play Commentator Rich Hollenberg.

“Once again, Dick has assembled an amazing team from across the country to support pediatric cancer research,” said Shane Jacobson, chief executive officer of the V Foundation. “Our mission is to fund game-changing research that accelerates cures to cancer and saves lives. Our generous donors are increasing the odds that children survive this terrible disease, and I applaud Dick, his honorees and everyone who is joining in the fight against cancer.”

The mission of the Dick Vitale Gala is to raise funds for premier pediatric cancer research nationwide, through the V Foundation. Minimal federal cancer research funding is dedicated to pediatric cancer, making private funding crucial. To date, the V Foundation has awarded nearly $55 million in pediatric cancer research grants.

The V Foundation holds 10 consecutive 4-star (highest) ratings from Charity Navigator, America’s largest evaluator of charities, making the Foundation among the top 2% of all charities evaluated. The V Foundation is also a GuideStar Platinum-rated charity.

For more information about the 16th Annual Dick Vitale Gala, please visit www.v.org/vitale. To purchase tickets, please call the Gala line at (941) 350-0580.


About the V Foundation for Cancer Research

The V Foundation for Cancer Research was founded in 1993 by ESPN and the late Jim Valvano, legendary North Carolina State University basketball coach and ESPN commentator. The V Foundation has funded more than $260 million in game-changing cancer research grants nationwide through a competitive process strictly supervised by a world-class Scientific Advisory Committee. Event proceeds benefit cancer research funded by the V Foundation. The V team is committed to accelerating Victory Over Cancer®. To learn more, visit v.org.