RCA Records' Tom Corson, Pitbull Honored by T.J. Martell Foundation
Said Corson of Pitbull: "I know what family means to him, and I know that he's a guy that really stands behind causes"
RCA Records President and COO Tom Corson was honored Sunday at the 15th annual T.J. Martell Foundation Family Day, held at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City. Also honored was Polo Grounds Music/RCA recording artist Pitbull, who headlined the day's musical showcase and received the first ever Family Day Artist Achievement Award.
"It's humbling," Corson told The Hollywood Reporter. "It's really not about me, it's really the idea that I can help organize something that raises a lot of money that helps a great cause."
The T.J. Martell Foundation uses Family Day, a carnival-style fundraiser with silent auctions and musical performances, to help raise money for cancer, leukemia and AIDS research. To date, the foundation has raised over $5 million, with Corson and his team contributing over $300,000.
For Corson, the decision to also highlight Pitbull was an easy one, considering the artist's history in the industry and path to stardom. "He's one of the great stories in music in the last five or six years. I know what family means to him, and I know that he's a guy that really stands behind causes. I just hoped he would do it, and he agreed in an instant."
Pitbull, born Armando Christian Perez, was thrown out of his parental home and spent time with a foster family with whom he never felt fully comfortable.
"Something like this doesn't come with a whole lot of hard work," Pitbull said while accepting the award, just moments after finishing his set of hits, including "Fireball" and "Timber." "I didn't grow up with much of a family, so everybody that's out here enjoying Family Day together, this is what it's all about. There's nothing like family."
The event was hosted by Hilary Duff and also featured performances by Timeflies, Bleachers, Us the Duo and Bea Miller.