It hasn’t been a kind year to nonprofit organizations. Many events critical to fundraising have been indefinitely postponed or canceled.

For the first time its history, the Cattle Baron’s Ball was canceled after attempting to shift the event outdoors to Klyde Warren Park Downtown.

“We were extremely disappointed, because we thought the outside venue was going to be our shot to be able to do this,” co-chair Heather Randall says. “We’re going try to raise as much money as we can for cancer. We’re hoping to find unique and creative ways.”

With an attendance of more than 3,000 guests, the Cattle Baron’s Ball is the largest single-night fundraiser for American Cancer Society research. During its 46-year history, the typically star-studded event has raised more than $85 million, funded 47 Nobel Peace Prize-winning scientists and assisted more than 40,000 cancer patients.


The Cattle Baron’s Ball has featured Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, George Strait, Waylon Jennings, Brooks & Dunn, Clint Black, Dwight Yoakam, Big & Rich, Toby Keith, Sugarland and Brad Paisley.

The organization is moving forward with a virtual raffle Oct. 2-17, along with a silent auction. (Visit for more information.) Despite canceling the event, the organizers say many supporters are allowing the charity to keep ticket funds and sponsorship donations.

“It was so generous and sweet because they know we need it,” co-chair Diana Hamilton says. “We really want to make sure every dollar that comes in goes straight to research.”

Diana Hamilton

Assistant Director of Development at Parish Episcopal School

Preston Hollow Favorites: NorthPark Center (Nordstrom, especially), Mi Cocina, Mesero’s margaritas

How did you end up in philanthropy?

I worked in Microsoft and did marketing for a few years. I stayed home for a little while. I volunteered for fundraising. I joined the Junior League of Dallas, and I was doing side projects, and someone asked me “Why don’t you come join the underwriting team in Junior League?” I said “No, no, no,” but it turned out that I loved it.

How did you end up in education?

I wound up doing the fundraisers at Greenhill School, and they hired me. When I went to Parish (Episcopal School), I ended up doing the same thing. That’s kind of how I got into education, because I wanted to be that stay-at-home mom, but yet I needed to work, too. I got to be around my son. Now that my son has graduated, he doesn’t understand why I haven’t left Parish. But I just truly love Parish, and I love the people.

“I love the impact the Cattle Baron’s makes. I love being a part of organizations that you see the difference you’re making.”

What other organizations are you involved with?

I’ve dedicated this year to Cattle Baron’s. The Family Place is near and dear to my heart. I’ve been involved with Deck My Room. It’s amazing. I had the opportunity to do that with my son, and it’s a really cool organization. I love Community Partners of Dallas.

Advice for someone interested in Dallas philanthropy?

Join the Junior League of Dallas. If you want to learn about Dallas and figure out where your personality traits fit in, they’ll help you figure it out. If you want to do fundraising like me, or if you are a finance person, there is a home for you.

Heather Randall

Assistant Vice President, Senior Legal Counsel – Mobility and Entertainment at AT&T

Preston Hollow Favorites: NorthPark Center, North Haven Trail, Preston Center, Hillstone, R+D Kitchen

How did you end up in law?

I was a ballet major when I first got to the University of Texas. Then one day, I decided I wanted to be a forensic psychology major. I decided to combine psychology with a law degree, and I became a lawyer.

How did you end up in philanthropy?

I first started with philanthropy with the Leukemia Lymphoma Society, and then I was on the board of the Girl Scouts of North Texas. About the same time, I was brought on as underwriting chair for the Leukemia Lymphoma Society for the Valentine’s Day luncheon. The year after that, I chaired my first event, and the rest of history.

“It’s 100 women that drive diversity across all realms. It’s 99 instantaneous friends. It’s really neat to work alongside them in pursuit of a mission.”

How do you pick which charity to support?

I really do believe in charity that revolves around kids and also cancer. My dad died of cancer. Between diagnosis and death, it was only two weeks. It was a really, really bad period, and to think that somebody could have cancer, and no one knew. The trauma treatment was really scary, and so when I was approached, that was in the back of my mind.

What makes Cattle Baron’s different?

There is an amazing group of ladies from across the community. How often do you have 100 committee members who all have one goal in mind? It’s really impressive. It makes it an even more exciting event since people really look forward to it. And it’s for an amazing organization — the American Cancer Society.