Mind over matter

The ALS Association Greater Philadelphia Chapter

raised $300,000 at a fund-raiser Dec. 5 at the Loews Philadelphia Hotel. The luncheon for 300 honored Richard S. Schiffrin, recently retired from the law firm Barroway Topaz Kessler Meltzer & Check. The luncheon speaker was Dr. Scott Mackler, a University of Pennsylvania associate professor and ALS patient who made his presentation by using a brain-computer interface, which converts a patient's thoughts into speech through a computer. Mackler, the first ALS patient to use this technology, was featured on

60 Minutes

in November.

Art therapy

The Evoluer House

, founded in 2004 by Cheryl Ann Wadlington to provide personal growth services to disadvantaged teen girls, held its first benefit and fashion show Dec. 5 at the Painted Bride Art Center. The catwalk was cochaired by singer Sarah Dash of the star trio Labelle; Deborah Gregory, author of the teen novel series

The Cheetah Girls

; and Gucci visual director Donald Taylor. The benefit for 300 raised $10,000 for the nonprofit.

Full-court press

Sixers players including Andre Miller, Kareem Rush, Thaddeus Young and Samuel Dalembert were among 150 guests who attended

Tiffany & Co.'s Mystery Blue Box

fund-raiser, held Dec. 8 at its Walnut Street store. Guests purchased a blue box hoping to win a Tiffany diamond and sapphire pendant. The event, held in celebration of the 76ers' 60th season, raised $10,000 for the Comcast-Spectacor Foundation and Sixers Charities.

Appealing to patients

New Jersey Gov. Corzine and Kelly Ripa, cohost of the TV show

Live With Regis and Kelly

, attended the grand opening Dec. 11 of

Cooper University Hospital

's $220 million Pavilion for patients in downtown Camden. When the patient floors of the 10-story building officially open in a few weeks, the Pavilion will feature 60 patient rooms, all private, 12 operating rooms, and a 30-bed intensive-care unit with its own pharmacy.