Several hundred residents honored former Mayor Frank Fenton and his wife Judie Fenton Thursday at "The Spirit of Giving" lunch and boutique, organized by members of the Beverly Hills Active Adult Club (BHAAC).
The Fentons, who have been married for 50 years, are local fixtures. Mr. Fenton has held many civic leadership roles, including serving on the City Council and Beverly Hills' Board of Education. He was active throughout the community until being struck with Parkinson’s disease several years ago. Mrs. Fenton co-founded Beverly Hills-based event planning firm FTA Events and served as commissioner of the city's Traffic and Parking Commission.
Proceeds from the lunch were split between the BHAAC and the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, where Mr. Fenton is being treated. The Fenton family helped fund a new position in the school’s Department of Neurology to assist patients and families dealing with the psychological effects of Parkinson’s disease.
“There is very poor support for families of those suffering from this disease,” Jeff Bronstein, a neurologist at the medical center, told the audience. “We need more support tools as well as more research.”
Mrs. Fenton, who described Bronstein as someone who changed her life, recounted when he asked the neurologist how she could help him and his patients. He told her he wanted to add a psychologist to his staff, prompting her to lead an effort to fund the job.
“We are so grateful for your support,” Mrs. Fenton told the audience, which included Mayor William Brien and former mayors Barry Brucker, Linda Briskman, David Webb and Les Bronte.
Attendees included BHAAC President Winifred Hervey and Mrs. Fenton’s 96-year-old mother, Donna Goldstein. BHAAC members Ellyn Snowden and Norma Zager co-chaired the lunch, which took place at the Beverly Hilton.