The Helen David Relief Fund honors the memory of the beloved Port Huron, Michigan bar owner and community leader. Beating breast cancer twice during her lifetime, Helen is an inspiration to those living with the disease. In her name, the HDRF assists women in the bar industry who are fighting breast cancer with the same dignity and courage that Helen exemplified throughout her battle and life as a pioneer business owner in the bar industry.
Born in Port Huron in 1916, Helen was a trailblazer. Women business owners were rarely heard of at that time, but that did not deter Helen! Helen opened her own bar, the Brass Rail, which remains an institution in her hometown. Helen loved her bar and ran it for 69 passion-filled years. Helen was active in the bar industry through the Licensed Beverage Association, and served as president of the St. Clair County Association, as well as various committees for the Michigan Association. According to her fellow townspeople, ” Helen was a fixture in Port Huron for over 69 years as the owner of the Brass Rail. She was considered by most people to be the heart and soul of Port Huron.”
Celebrating the Life of a Trailblazer Helen’s zest for life was legendary. When she wasn’t busy running the bar, or serving as a leader in her community, the free-spirited Helen enjoyed golfing, bowling. and baseball. One of her great loves was that of sport fishing; she was once featured in Sports Fishing Magazine for her incredible catches around the world. Helen also sponsored a variety of sports teams within the community and was especially fond of hockey. She is remembered for the enthusiasm she exuded in each and every one of her vibrant years.
According to Tony Abou-Ganim, Helen was an inspiration to many, especially to a young boy who grew up learning the trade in her bar.
“I grew up in the bar business. My cousin Helen David opened the Brass Rail Bar in Port Huron, Michigan on June 15, 1937. I enjoyed many Shirley Temples while watching my Uncles tend that beautiful bar before imbibing in my first legal cocktails on April 14, 1978. I later went on to learn the craft from Helen, my Uncle Charlie, and Cousin Tony in 1980. I guess you could say, bartending is in my blood. My earliest influence came from my Cousin Helen, who taught me, ” For a nickel more, you go first class!”
The USBG National Charity Foundation is a proud partner of the third annual For The Love Of Cocktails event being held at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas. The incredible bartenders behind the program developed For the Love of Cocktails in order to raise funds for a vital community program and to share their passion for the luxury, avant-garde mixology.
Last year’s event was an amazing success raising thousands of dollars for the Helen David Relief Fund. The USBG and the USBG National Charity Foundation have joined forces with Back Bar USA to expand the program and share this opportunity with our members nationwide.
For The Love of Cocktails is a landmark event that serves to advance both first-class cocktails and a program that supports our community. We are thrilled to join with hosts Tony Abou-Ganim and Francesco Lafranconi in welcoming you to attend the third annual For The Love Of Cocktails event.