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ESA Foundation’s ‘Nite to Unite’ Raises $750,000 for Children’s Charities


WASHINGTON, D.C. – The ESA Foundation announced today that its annual fundraiser gala for children’s charities, Nite to Unite, raised $750,000 this year. The proceeds from the black-tie optional dinner and auction enables the ESA Foundation, the computer and video game industry’s philanthropic arm, to help improve the lives of American children through grants to a wide variety of organizations.

“The video game industry’s commitment to giving back is stronger than ever,” said ESA president and CEO Michael Gallagher. “For ten years now, Nite to Unite has been the premiere industry event dedicated to children’s causes and honoring its creative visionaries. I’m honored that so many distinguished individuals and organizations attended.”

The sold-out event, which took place on October 22 at the Westin St. Francis Hotel in San Francisco, honored Shigeru Miyamoto, the Nintendo Co. executive who pioneered the development of both the MarioTM series of games and the Wii console. In recognition of his work, Miyamoto received the 2009 ESA Champion Award, joining the previous recipients including LucasArts’ George Lucas, GameStop’s Dan DeMatteo, and Sony Computer Entertainment’s Ken Kutaragi.

This year’s Nite to Unite co-chairs were Brian Farrell, president & CEO, THQ Inc.; Graham Hopper, executive vice president/GM Disney Interactive Studios; and John Riccitiello, CEO, Electronic Arts.

The ESA Foundation was created by the American interactive entertainment software industry to support and provide opportunities that can make a difference in the lives of America’s youth. The Foundation is fully supported by proceeds from its limited edition charity game pack’s sales and its annual fundraiser, “A Nite to Unite – for Kids,” which together have raised more than $10 million in the last 10 years. For more information about the ESA Foundation, please visit


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