Inside the 25th ‘Living Landmarks’ Celebration
On November 1, 2018, The New York Landmarks Conservancy hosted its 25th Living Landmarks celebration at The Plaza Hotel. This year’s honorees were: Christie’s Americas chairman emeritus Stephen S. Lash, garden designer Lynden B. Miller, philanthropists Liz and Jeffrey Peek, actress/dancer/singer Chita Rivera, Dr. Thomas Sculco, Publicolor founder Ruth Lande Shuman, Columbia University president Michael I. Sovern, and former MTA Chair Peter Stangl. The sold-out event raised $1.3 million.
Landmark’s president Peg Breen opened the program and introduced the evening’s master of ceremonies, himself a Living Landmark, David Patrick Columbia. Music was provided by another Living Landmark Peter Duchin and his Orchestra. Living Landmarks Arie L. Kopelman and Leonard Lauder served as Honorary Co-Chairs for the evening.
The recipient’s speeches were witty in their own way. Stephen Lash turned his into a live auction. The much-loved philanthropists Liz and Jeff Peek had the crowd in stitches with a David Letterman-style list: “The great thing about being a Living Landmark…is that it sure beats the alternative.” In a moving tribute to her life’s work, Ruth Lande Shuman accepted her award alongside three Publicolor alumni.
These students were the first in their families to graduate from high school and college. Dr. Thomas Sculco received praise for giving fellow indomitable honoree Chita Rivera a hip replacement. Michael Sovern’s long list of boards and charities drew applause. Peter Stangl recalled the help of Jaqueline Onassis in the restoration of Grand Central Station.
The New York Landmarks Conservancy honors distinguished New Yorkers as “Living Landmarks” for their contributions to the City. The Landmarks Conservancy is dedicated to preserving and protecting the iconic buildings and diverse neighborhoods that define this extraordinary City. It is the only private organization providing both financial and technical support in this effort.