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D.E.F. Raises $1M at London Event

Nov 9, 2010 3:58 PM   By Denise Romano
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RAPAPORT... The Diamond Empowerment Fund (D.E.F.) raised more than  $1 million in London during their Diamonds in the Sky fundraising event yesterday evening. This was D.E.F.’s first charity event outside of the U.S. and exceeded early projections of raising $500,000.  D.E.F. was founded in December 2007 by Russell Simmons as a non-profit, international organization with the mission to raise money in support of education initiatives that develop and empower economically disadvantaged people in African nations where diamonds are a natural resource.

Tim Dabson of the Diamond Trading Company (DTC) was the emcee for the night and company managing director Varda Shine was name "Humanitarian of the Year" by Simmons.  De Beers chairman Nicky Oppenheimer also attended the gala.  Diamond jewelry, sports experience and travel packages went up for auction to benefit the D.E.F. Highlights of the night included a modeling session by African model Flaviana Matata and emotional speeches from students who have directly benefitted from D.E.F.'s program.

*Pictured from left to right: Nicky Oppenheimer (chairman De Beers), Anna Martin (managing director for diamond jewelry division at Standard Chartered Bank), Russell Simmons, Varda Shine (CEO, DTC) and Benjamin Chavis (D.E.F. governing board co-president).

Tags: Denise Romano , DEF, Denise Romano, DTC, Varda Shine
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