stephen cannon

Second Annual Up2Us Gala


The Second Annual Up2Us Gala was a great success, bringing together more than 300 guests including Hollywood celebrities Heidi Klum, Gretchen Mol, Jonny Lee Miller and Kyle MacLachlan who mingled alongside sports figures such as New York Giants cornerback, Prince Amukamara, Milwaukee Bucks power forward, John Henson and U.S. Olympians Kim Vandenberg and Sarah Hughes. More than 300 guests joined the celebration while raising more than $470,000 to help advance sports as a solution to the critical challenges facing America’s youth – obesity, violence and academic failure. College basketball analyst Bill Raftery emceed the star-studded event, joined by Pro Football Hall of Famer, Curtis Martin who presented the Up2Us Legacy Award to Commissioner Tagliabue. Jay Agresta, President of Benzel-Busch Motor Car Corp, presented the second Up2Us Legacy Award of the evening to Stephen Cannon. The program included a powerful video highlighting the struggle and success of Up2Us’ Coach Across America (CAA) coach Israel Frank. The crowd rose to their feet after the Coach of the Year winner’s moving speech, “Through my training at Coach Across America, I’ve learned to separate the child from the behavior. The kid isn’t bad, he’s just made bad choices,” Coach Israel explained. He added, “I see kids going in the wrong direction like I was, and Up2Us has given me an opportunity to show them the right way. Like the other CAA coaches, I’m someone the kids can relate to and I think that’s what makes Up2Us’ Coach Across America program so effective.”

“Coach Israel’s story is a testament to the power of sports and the important role mentors can play in the lives of young people, especially kids living in underserved communities,” said Paul Caccamo, founder and president of Up2Us. “The support we have received from our friends in the business, entertainment and sports community has been incredible and encouraging. Every day, news reports remind us of the urgent need to advance the SBYD movement and place more coaches like Israel Frank to serve our nation’s most vulnerable youth. We can create real social change through sports and positively impact the lives of millions of children across the country."

Take a look at some of the photos below!


Heidi Klum and Up2Us Board Member David Colbert came to the gala to show their support.

Basketball analyst Bill Raftery acted as the emcee of the Up2Us Gala.

Sandra Bernhard, Jonny Lee Miller and Michele Hicks attend the 2nd Annual Up2Us Gala

Kyle MacLachlan tells reporters how important sports were to him during his youth.

Up2Us Founder and President, Paul Caccamo telling the NFL network about Up2Us' great work.

Former NFL player Curtis Martin (R) presented the Up2Us Legacy Award to Former NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue.

President of Benzel-Busch Motor Car Corp., Joseph Agresta, Jr. (L) presented the Up2Us Legacy Award to President and CEO of Mercedes-Benz USA, Stephen Cannon.

Up2Us Ambassadors, Olympic figure skater, Sarah Hughes and rock climber, Sasha DiGiulian.

New York Giants Cornerback Prince Amukamara (L) and Pilar Davis attend the Up2Us Gala.

Olympic swimmer Kim Vandenberg and Adam Rosante attend the gala as Up2Us Ambassadors.


NBA Player John Henson (R) and Up2Us Board Member Matt Henson attend the Up2Us Gala.

Boardwalk Empire's Gretchen Mol supports Up2Us.

Olympic fencer Tim Morehouse and Rachael Kun show their support for Up2Us.


Coming Soon: Up2Us Gala 2014!


Up2Us is having its second annual gala on Wednesday, May 14, 2014 at Mercedes-Benz Manhattan. This promises to be an inspiring evening, as we bring together our friends and supporters, as well as celebrities and athletes, to celebrate our achievements and the profound impact our coach-mentors have made on the lives of children across the country. Sienna Miller with Up2Us Board Member, Dr. David Colbert & Mark Colbert.

At this year’s event, we are proud to honor two committed supporters of Up2Us, Paul Tagliabue, former Commissioner of the National Football League, and Stephen Cannon, President and CEO of Mercedes-Benz USA.  With Paul’s help, Up2Us became a registered 501(c)(3) in 2010 and through Covington & Burling LLP, he continues to support Up2Us by providing pro-bono legal services.  Stephen, in his role as board chair for the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation USA, financially supports our groundbreaking Coach Across America program, which impacts more than 50,000 youth across the country.  Up2Us is excited and pleased to be honoring them both at our second annual gala.

Up2Us hopes that you will join us for this very special evening.  We encourage you to join us by purchasing a table or tickets to see for yourself the great work we do.  If you have any questions, please call the Up2Us Benefit Office at 212.763.8599 or email

We look forward to seeing you on May 14th.  Together, we can change the lives of youth across the country through the power of sports!



Naomi Watts and Up2Us Board Member, Dr. David Colbert. Photo Credit: Patrick McMullan

Victoria's Secret Angel, Erin Heatherton. Photo Credit: Patrick McMullan


Left to Right: Dr. David Colbert, Philip Seymour Hoffman & Paul Caccamo

Wynton Marsalis & Up2Us Honoree, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Photo Credit: Patrick McMullan