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Philanthropy Starts With A Good Education – Alvin Malnik Has It!

Posted by Alvin Malnik on April 09, 2009
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Alvin Malnik graduated from Soldan High School, St. Louis Missouri

It’s only fitting that St. Louis-born entrepreneur, Alvin I. Malnik, hails from a place that has experienced as much change as his future business destination – Miami Beach.  Born in 1933, Malnik began his public school education at Clark Elementary School and graduated from Soldan High School in 1950.

The St. Louis public school system enjoyed a century of firsts:  Central High, opened in 1853, and was the first public high school west of the Mississippi;  Sumner High School, opened in 1875 was the first public high school for Black students west of the Mississippi, and the first public Kindergarten in North America opened in St. Louis in 1873.

During the 1900s St. Louis continued with their list of “firsts” when the Educational Museum, which featured articles purchased from the 1904 World’s Fair Palace of Education, opened in 1905.  In  1943 the museum turned into the the first audiovisual department in the United States.

Alvin Malnik graduated from Washington University, St. Louis Missouri

The internationally known entrepreneur continued his education at Washington University in St. Louis.  Malnik graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree from the university in 1954 before relocating to South Florida to attend law school at the University of Miami.

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Alvin Malnik, Nat King Cole Generation Hope, Inc Gala

Posted by Alvin Malnik on February 16, 2009
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The Cole twins, Timolin and Casey of Boca Raton, the youngest daughters of music legend Nat King Cole, have established Nat King Cole Generation Hope, Inc., a non-profit foundation to benefit music education in schools in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach Counties.  The Foundation will be launched at the Nat King Cole Generation Hope Black & White Gala on Saturday, November 29 at The Forge in Miami Beach.

The Gala will be chaired by philanthropist and international financier Alvin Malnik and his wife Nancy Malnik.  The Forge, a Miami Beach restaurant and bar, has served as the institution of elegance and taste and was founded by Alvin Malnik in 1968.  The historic landmark and American icon has been the home of great music events throughout the years including performances by Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jr.

The Gala will feature visits from celebrity guests and star-studded entertainment including a performance by Siedah Garrett and 11 time Grammy nominated songwriter and producer Dennis Lambert.  DJ Irie, a 2007 BET Award nominee and winner of Miami New Times’ 2005 Best Club DJ, will lend his award winning musical talent during the cocktail reception and the After Party at the Glass bar inside The Forge.  Guests will include some of today’s hottest entertainers, the Cole Family and friends.

The Cole twins launched the Foundation after learning of budget cuts in South Florida public schools.  The Foundation was created to provide funding for music education to children of all ages, ethnic backgrounds and diversities, including music instrument instruction, music composition and songwriting, technical instruction in the recording arts,  music instruments and equipment, and music related seminars and field trips.

“Our father was a pioneer and music legend who transcended color and race.  During his lifetime, the arts were an integral part of the educational curriculum; today’s youth are art starved,” said Timolin Cole.  “By enriching students with the opportunity to enhance their musical talents and abilities, his legacy
lives on.”

Twin sister Casey Cole added, “We believe our father, by right, has earned his place in history as a true American hero and legend through his contributions to the world of music.  We hope that through the funds raised we can help inspire a new generation of youth through the power of music.”

Nat King Cole was one of the most popular singers ever to hit the American charts. A brilliant recording and concert artist during the 40s, 50s, and 60s, he attracted millions of fans around the world with a sensitive and caressing singing voice that was unmistakable. Cole had a rare blend of technical musical knowledge and sheer performing artistry topped off with an abundance of showmanship. In the 23 years that he recorded with Capitol Records, he turned out hit after amazing hit – nearly 700 songs – all the while managing to remain a gentle, tolerant and gracious human being.

In 1965, Nat King Cole died tragically of lung cancer. He was only 45. Nathaniel Adams Coles was born in Montgomery, Alabama on March 17, 1919. He was the son of Baptist minister, Edward James Coles, and mother, Perlina Adams, who sang soprano and directed the choir in her husband’s church. Cole grew up in Chicago, met and married a girl in New York named Maria Hawkins, who was from Boston. They had five children and lived in Hancock Park in Los Angeles.

NKC Generation Hope, Inc. has been established as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization in South Florida.  Its officers are Timolin and Casey Cole, both of Boca Raton.  Honorary Board Members are:  Mrs. Nat King Cole of Ponte Vedre, Fla.; Ms. Natalie Cole and Ms. Carole Cole, both of Los Angeles; Mr. Jimmy Cefalo of Pittston, Pennsylvania; Mr. Colin Cowie of Los Angeles; Mr. Anthony C. Gruppo of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida; Mr. and Mrs. Ellis Jones of Los Angeles; Ms. Leslie Linder of West Palm Beach; Mr. and Mrs. Al Malnik of Palm Beach; Ms. Marylynne Stephan McGlone of Palm Beach; Ms.Holly Robinson and Mr. Rodney Peete, both of Los Angeles, Ms. Madelyn Savarick of Boca Raton; and Mr. and Mrs. Jordan Zimmerman also of Boca Raton.

To obtain more information on Nat King Cole Generation Hope, Inc., please visit:

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Honoring A Dear Friend’s Memory – Jay Weiss

Posted by Alvin Malnik on November 24, 2008
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“Jay was the finest, nicest, kindest human being I’ve ever met in my life,” says Al Malnik, who has pledged $1 million to support the Jay Weiss Center for Social Medicine and Health Equity, named in honor of his friend. “I knew how much Jay loved the work he was doing with the hospital, so when I heard there was going to be a center that would not only be named after him, but also be devoted to doing the activities he so loved, I wanted to be part of it.”

The Jay Weiss Center for Social Medicine and Health Equity was officially established in 2005 in memory of philanthropist Jay W. Weiss, a longtime champion of the underserved in the Miami-Dade community. The center is working to achieve Jay Weiss’ vision that the poor have access to the same quality of health care available to those with resources.

Considered “best friends” since the day they met, Al and Jay’s friendship dates back to the late 50s. Jay’s daughter Jennie Block says, “I can’t remember a time when our families have not been friends. Al was always very proud of my dad and his work on behalf of the community. We’re deeply appreciative of his support and many, many years of friendship. He continues to be a good friend to my father in death as he was in life.”

Malnik was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri. He moved to Miami to pursue a law degree at the University of Miami, which he earned in 1959, and has been here ever since. He practiced law, and then 1986 founded Miami Beach’s world-class dining institution The Forge Restaurant; his son, Shareef Malnik, became the proprietor in 1991 and is currently the CEO of the operation. Malnik has been presented the key to Miami Beach twice for The Forge’s contributions to the community.

“When Bernie Fogel, Jennie and I had lunch with Al he reflected on nearly 50 years of their friendship and about one quality in particular which he felt most passionately about. It was Jay’s ability to make you go further than you imagined you could.” Says Jay’s daughter Laurie Nuell. “He recalled a time when he really was questioning himself and was not as confident as he should have been, Jay told him that he could be anything he wanted to be, and should not settle for less. In many of his successes it was always Jay’s encouragement that helped him. As a friend, he could always turn to Jay for support-they were like brothers.”

Malnik, like his friend Jay Weiss, is deeply committed to helping his community. The Jay Weiss Center is just one of numerous organizations he supports. His is an active board member of many local arts and civic organizations, such as United Foundation for AIDS, Miami City Ballet, and Miami Symphony. The Malnik family is deeply committed to the Make-A-Wish Foundation and on Saturday, March 3, 2007, the Miami Beach Chamber of Commerce honored Al Malnik and his son, Shareef, as Outstanding Citizens of the Year.

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Dana-Farber Gets 1 Million From The Malnik Family

Posted by Alvin Malnik on November 18, 2008
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Al and Nancy Malnik saw firsthand the quality of Dana-Farber’s expertise when their son, Jarod, was diagnosed with acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) and their subsequently turned to Dana-Farber’s Chief of Staff Stephen E. Sallan, MD, for consultation on his treatment.

Three years later, Jarod is in remission and the Malniks, inspired by this experience, have given $1 million to establish the Al and Nancy Malnik Family AML Research Fund at Dana-Farber under the direction of Dr. Sallan.

“Nancy and I feel privileged that our son was the recipient of the most caring and

Wondrous advice that anyone could possibly receive,” said Al Melnik. “With this gift, we hope to further the research for AML cures while also honoring the unbelievable relationship Dr. Sallan has with all his patients.”

This gift will alson provide critical support to Mission Possible: The Dana-Farber Campaign to Conquer Cancer. This $1 billion fundraising initiative, of which$450 million is designated specifically for research and care, will help the Institute’s scientists find more effective therapies for diseases, such as AML, and save even more patient’s lives. Attacking the disease at it core

AML is a disease that starts in the bone marrow and often moves into the blood. The bone marrow cells do not develop correctly and, as a result, clog the bone marrow and circulation.
Dr. Sallan has organized a team, headed by Scott Armstrong, MD, PhD, who have found that leukemia stem cells—a small number of self renewing cells within a tumor are likely responsible for maintaining AML and, therefore, may represent highly relevant targets for anti-leukemia therapies. With this gift, they are pursuing several studies focused on defining the stem cell that provide the basis for the disease’s generation and persistence, which will enable them to further identify how AML evolves.

Investigators can also build off this knowledge to develop new treatment methods, while lessening potential side effects and focusing on the growing importance of many quality-of life issues. Dana-Farber researchers, including Kimberly Stegmaier, MD, and Todd Golub, MD, are focused on identifying already approved drugs that can target AML stem cells and abnormally-activated, cancer-causing genes.

Often, rare diseases such as AML, do not receive as much attention from industry as more common cancers. As such, this gift will dramatically influence the drug discovery and clinical trials process and, ultimately, improve survival rates for patients with this terrible disease.

“The Malnik family’s generosity allows us to establish an AML focused research effort, which has the potential to affect patients everywhere with this disease,” said Sallan. “We are moving in a truly revolutionary direction which will ultimately result in saving more patients lives and improving their quality of life.”

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