Top Hat Ball Event Chair Catie Schmidt shares an important message to guests of Marklund’s Top Hat Ball.

February 5, 2022

6 pm – 12:30 am



Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile,  540 N. Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL – 7th Floor Grand Ballroom
• Cocktails & Oz Entertainment at 6pm
• Dinner Celebration at 7:30pm
• Auctions throughout the Evening
• NEW THIS YEAR – Super Bowl Squares – Pre-Sales have begun at $1,000 and $100 with cash prizes and United Airlines tickets! See details below!

• Late-Night Food Favorites
• Dancing & Open Bar open until 12:30am

• RSVP by Monday, January 24, 2022
• Black Tie Preferred but Not Required


* Main entrée is gluten-free and includes filet and fish.

* Vegetarian and vegan options available upon request.  Contact Jeannine Zupo at

* Top Hat is a cashless event!  Please consider pre-registering yourself and your credit card for touchless check-in the night of the event, and to start bidding today!

* We will offer a one-stop credit card swipe opportunity at the door for all your donation needs, that will ensure a quick and easy touch-free check-out process on your smartphone.


Questions? Please contact Jeannine Zupo at 630.593.5445 or

540 North Michigan Avenue,
Chicago, Illinois 60611 USA

Sleek comfort awaits at
Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile,
a trendy destination on Michigan Avenue.
Hotel Rooms available until Wednesday, January 26, 2022.



Super Bowl Squares on Sale!


Our in-person event is sold out.

Contact Jeannine Zupo at or call (630) 593-5445.

Event Chairs

We are thrilled to once again welcome our good friends, Catie and Max Schmidt, as Event Chairs of this year’s gala. We are so confident that they will bring so much to this event through their generous circle of influence and through Catie’s great eye for decoration and style.  We are excited to see another successful year unfold under their leadership.

Event Committee

Event Chairs:
Catie and Max Schmidt

Event Vice Chairs:
Kelly and Tom Roule

Event Committee:
Abbie Armbruster
Ana Armbruster
Jim Armbruster
Lindsey Burnette
Kim Delort
Carol Donahue
Karen Golden

Mike Herlihy
Sandy Herlihy
Mike Jones
Tim Kueker
Natalie Miller
Binna Porter
Bud Porter
Stacey Prentis
Zach Prentis
Cheryl Simoncelli

Jeannine Zupo- Director of Signature Events

Auction Committee

Heather Beck
Peggy Szarzynski
Sue Wick

Friends of the Year


Sandy & Mike Herlihy

2021 – Peg and John Haskins
2020 — Becky and John Duffey
2019 — David Pierro
2018 — Jeanne and George Webster
2017 — Aon
2016 — Karen J. Golden
2015 — The Foglia Family Foundation
2014 — Bud and Jim Porter
2013 — Carol and Mike Donahue
2012 — Andrea Billhardt
2011 — Gary, Jean & Beth Lederer
2010 — George and Pam Rion
2009 — Greg Osko
2008 — Jim and Lynn Armbruster
2007 — Joel Thompson
2006 — Robert Paddock/Paddock Publications

2005 — Bruce Jensen and Gail Ludewig/Total Works
2004 — Kevin Acker/West Suburban Bank
2003 — Senator James “Pate” Philip
2002 — Everett Van Der Molen
2001 — Congressman Henry Hyde
2000 — Robert Bernard
1999 — Dennis Langley and Peter Cyrus
1999 — Senator Steven J. Rauschenberger
1998 — Robert Smetana
1998 — Gwendolyn S. Henry
1997 — Father John Guiney
1996 — James D. Anderson
1995 — Jean Jordan

1994 — Jim Ford
1993 — Dennis Zimmerman
1992 — Michael Brenan
1991 — Richard Theriault
1990 — Gale Sayers
1989 — John P. Frazee
1988 — Birger Nyborg
1987 — Paul Greening
1986 — Thomas O. Myers, Jr.
1985 — Doris Whitney
1984 — Erhardt Weidmann
1983 — Richard Rathman
1982 — Edwin Deicke
1981 — Hiriam Sibley

Top Hat History

The ball was established in 1997 when donors Jim Ford and Len Patyka chaired Marklund’s first-ever black tie gala. The event was held at the Shedd Aquarium and net $50,000, a great accomplishment for a first-year event! The ball immediately outgrew the Shedd space the following year and has moved to many venues since then, including the Field Museum, Union Station, Navy Pier, and Marriott hotels.

Since its inception, the ball has raised more than $7,591,261 in net proceeds, which has supported Marklund’s general operating and endowment funds.

Looking Back at the Top Hat Ball…
Top Hat Ball 2017
Top Hat Ball 2018
Top Hat Ball 2019
Top Hat Ball 2020