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2022 Summa Health Sapphire Ball

Akron’s premier fundraiser shines light on the life-saving care of Summa Health Emergency Services 

The Summa Health Sapphire Ball returned in person Saturday, October 8, 2022, to the John S. Knight Center in downtown Akron. The 19th annual edition of Akron’s premier philanthropic gala was a black-tie celebration featuring the sights and sounds of vintage New York.

An unforgettable night of glitz and glamour, fine dining, top entertainment and dancing — all to support a worthy cause — makes the Summa Health Sapphire Ball one of the most sought-after tickets in Akron every year.

Named for the precious gemstone that symbolizes wisdom, virtue and good fortune, the Sapphire Ball supports clinically excellent care and lifesaving programs for Summa Health patients throughout the health system. The gala has raised nearly $13 million in its lifetime.

This year’s ball highlighted Summa Health Emergency Services providing life-saving care 24/7 across four locations in Akron, Barberton, Green and Wadsworth-Rittman. 

Sandra Smith, a longtime philanthropic leader in the Akron community, represented Summa Health as the honorary chair. 

Don Rife served as the fundraising committee chair, leading a group of 15 volunteers and community leaders focused on fundraising efforts.

Physician chairs were David Seaberg, M.D., chair of the Summa Health Department of Emergency Medicine, and Michael Beeson, M.D., program director of the Summa Health Emergency Medicine Residency Program. 

Entertainers such as Jay Leno, the Four Tops and Frank Sinatra, Jr. have headlined the ball in recent years. In 2022, guests enjoyed a delightful medley of entertainment with dancers from Verb Ballets, plus dinner music by local musicians of the Theron Brown Quintet and dancing to New York-based The Bob Hardwick Sound Sensation, one of the top dance orchestras in the country. 

Next year’s Summa Health Sapphire Ball is scheduled for September 23, 2023. For more information, contact Nikki Hawk at 330.375.3548 or

More about the Sapphire Ball


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