2016 – Chicago Tribune – “Another door opens for Chicago House at debut fundraiser”

By: Candace Jordan Contact Reporter

Chicago Tribune

“Another Door Opens,” an inaugural event benefiting Chicago House, was held at Architectural Artifacts on Jan. 13 with more than 500 guests in attendance. Local artists, interior designers, artisans and architects re-imagined and designed 30 vintage doors that were auctioned off during the event, raising $50,000 for the social service agency that provides housing, medical and other services for people living with HIV/AIDS and the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.

The name for the event was chosen as a metaphor for the work Chicago House does. The Rev. Stan Sloan, Chicago House CEO, explains, “We were founded in 1985, as doors everywhere were closed to those who were sick and dying of the mysterious new disease called AIDS. The doors of our hospice opened as other doors closed, giving them a place to die with dignity. Those same doors and the hospice itself were repurposed in 2013 to reach out to another marginalized community, trans women and men who face constant discrimination in their day-to-day lives.”

A VIP reception was held inside a 1930s jewelry store facade that was purchased at a Nashville museum by Stuart Grannen, owner of Architectural Artifacts, an 80,000 square-foot warehouse filled with antiques in Ravenswood. Guests enjoyed live music, a DJ, cocktails and hors d’oeuvres as they admired and bid on the re-designed vintage doors up for auction. Michael Del Piero, Michael Abrams, Linc Thelen, Steve Quinlan, Tom Stringer, Kim Scodro, Elizabeth Krueger, Randy Heller, Soucie Horner, Nora Schneider, Erin Shakoor and Phillip Lantz were participants during the event. Some items up for auction included a headboard by Brynn Olson, a chess table by Leslie Zaksas and a chandelier by Tom Kehoe. The largest bid was $2,500 for PROjECT. interiors’ door, which was re-designed as a lucite-topped console table.

“Over the years, we’ve collected hundreds of wooden doors from old buildings around Chicago, waiting for them to inspire us. It makes me proud to think that something destined for a landfill will now be creatively repurposed and auctioned to benefit our friends at Chicago House,” said Grannen.

Eric Retzer, Sloan and Jill Maremont offered welcoming remarks and thanked supporters. City Treasurer Kurt Summers spoke about the importance of Chicago House. “I can’t think of another organization that does more for people who need it the most than this organization.” Another event is already being planned for next year.

Freelance writer Candace Jordan is involved with many local organizations, including some whose events she covers.

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