In The Hamptons With Jean Shafiroff: Summer Plans, Galas & Relaxing

Image for post
Image for post
2017 Southampton Animal Shelter 8th Animal Unconditional Love Gala in Southampton, New York. Featuring: Jean Shafiroff & adorable Pit bull. Credit: Rob Rich

Honored in the past for her work with the Southampton Animal Shelter Foundation, Jean Shafiroff finds the Hamptons is as much about finding peace as it is about giving back.

Shafiroff will serve as an Honorary Chair for the Ninth Annual Unconditional Love Gala, which is to be held on July 21st, 2018 at a private residence. The gala is truly a magical evening that celebrates the hard work of the dedicated staff members and volunteers that serves and rescue animals in need of their forever home.

Image for post
Image for post
Photo Credit: Victor Hugo/PMC

We caught up with the busy Philanthropist on a very hot Monday on the Upper West Side at Italian hot-spot, Carmines. Shafiroff known for her philanthropy, unique style and kind heart shared details of her involvement with the charity, her own rescue work in Nicaragua and what she enjoys most about summer in the Hamptons.

Image for post
Image for post
Jean Shafiroff, & Martin Shafiroff. Photo Credit: Krista Kennell/PMC

As an animal advocate, Jean Shafiroff is one of the Hamptons’ most effective — and stylish — fundraisers. “I have chaired the gala five times and last year, I was honored and this year would make my seventh year involved with the gala,” says Shafiroff of her role with Southampton Animal Shelter Foundation.

“I remember attending a cocktail party where the shelter raised $78,000, but I had to convince them to do a more traditional dinner gala to raise more money. I modeled the new gala format after the Southampton Hospital gala, which I’ve chaired three times. I am a strong supporter of the shelter and proud of the work that they do,” says Shafiroff. “I have given the shelter about $25,000 each year for the past several years. Also when I chair a gala, I always purchase one table and then raise money for the charity.”

If you are like me, you may not be able to fork over $25,000, but lucky for you, the Southampton Animal Shelter has a wide-range of ticket prices and if you’re under 35, you can purchase a junior ticket for $300!

Image for post
Image for post
Elizabeth Shafiroff, Jean Shafiroff and Dr. Jiovanni Bulgarelli Jimenez in Costa Rica (2016)

Jean credits her daughters for encouraging her involvement with the shelter. A genuine love of animals is something that the Shafiroff family truly shares, which, you can easily see if you ever scroll through Jean’s Instagram account of her loving pit bull, cat and rescue trips. “I credit my daughters, they really love animals and my daughter, Elizabeth has her own charity, Global Strays,” explains Shafiroff. “They thought the shelter was excellent and then I went in and met the board members and took a tour of the shelter. I wanted to do something with my daughters, so I used it as a way to usher in the younger generation to get involved in philanthropy.”

Something that will be different this year, the gala will not have an honoree, instead, the gala will be honoring their loving rescued animals. “This is going to be a very nice evening, we have a new board President, Cliff Knight. Cliff has really been trying to reduce the budget and get everything in order, and the shelter needed to cut some expenses. I think those are very positive changes, but the charity has to be sustainable, so it can continue to do its work,” says Shafiroff.

Image for post
Image for post
Photo Credit: Krista Schlueter for The New York Times

While there will be pets available for adoption at the gala, new pet owners need to educate themselves on the proper care and treatment of their new friendly pet companions, especially if someone takes in a stray animal. “New pet owners need to take the pet to a vet, especially if it’s a stray, says Jean.

“If someone rescues a stray animal, the animal needs to get its shots and immunizations and if you can’t afford it, then you should look into shelters that offer free or low-cost veterinary care. “I’ve seen the difference of how animals are treated here compared to other countries. In America, we view our animals as part of our family and in some countries they don’t share the same attitude towards pets as we do. However, some countries are learning more about the proper care of animals and I’m hopeful about that. ”

Image for post
Image for post
Jean Shafiroff at the 5th annual Unconditional Love Gala. Photo Credit: PMC

While this gala is very special to Shafiroff, it isn’t the only event on her busy schedule. “ I’m very excited about attending many events as well as to be a co-chair for several galas this summer,” shares Shafiroff. “ I will be hosting an event at my home for the Southampton Hospital in a few weeks and on June 23rd I will co-chair the American Heart Association gala. On July 28th, I am will be the chair of the Ellen Hermanson Foundation and on August 4th, I will purchase a table for the Southampton Hospital gala.”

Jean is keeping a very active and busy calendar, but when she is not attending a board meeting, soliciting donations or organizing the next gala, she enjoys relaxing at her two-acre estate in Southampton (which recently received an entire renovation). “I love walks on the beach and to be at home with friends and my husband, there’s so much to love about the Hamptons, but it’s good to relax at home,” says Shafiroff.

Image for post
Image for post
Jean Shafiroff and her rescue pit bull, Bella

You can see Jean and several of the pets available for adoption on Saturday, July 21st in Southampton as she serves as the Honorary Chair of the Southampton Animal Shelter Foundation annual gala. Rated in the top 10% of shelters in the country, 94% of animals brought to the shelter are adopted into loving homes.

The Southampton Animal Shelter Foundation accepts stray pets regardless of age, breed, or health providing them with care, food, training and medical attention. No adoptable animal is left behind. There is still time to purchase tickets, you can do so by clicking here.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store