Caron New York Gala
BIOGRAPHY- Lauren and Jay Springer
While Lauren Springer has a Master’s degree in Social Work in Adolescent Health Care from U of Pennsylvania, it was not until needing to parent a child with mental illness, including substance use disorder did she find her place in the addiction treatment field. What started as seeking refuge and support in naranon, and her son’s first admission to Caron, eventually led to starting, in conjunction with Caron, a support group for parents in Bergen County NJ. The power of the group experience empowered Lauren to recognize that parents of children in treatment need as much education as their children and when parents feel supported and educated, they are much more likely to support treatment, hold boundaries and parent with compassion rather than fear.
This experience and vision led Lauren to a position as the Director of Family Relations with Turnbridge, an extended care program for adolescents and young adults in Ct over 10 years ago. Seven years ago, feeling that every parent, regardless of program affiliation, needs solid education about mental illness and substance use disorder, Lauren and her husband Jay began contributing to the Catherine Caron Fund – a fund which supports family education and recovery.
Today, those funds continue to educate countless parents and families. Lauren, in addition to offering individual support to parents to assist with their own recovery process, facilitates daily parent support group meetings as well as a rich educational series each month through the support of Turnbridge. Jay, who earned a Master’s degree in Finance from NYU and has had a long career in wealth management, along with 2 other fathers became the 3 Papas who are responsible for the inception of My Child and Addiction podcasts - giving thousands of people the opportunity to tune in to parent support group podcasts. Since its inception, there has been 50 episodes of My Child and Addiction podcasts and they have been downloaded approximately 160,000 times. Jay has also been a member of the Caron NY Advisory board for 10 years.
There is no greater way Lauren and Jay feel that they can say thank you to all those who supported them in their recovery than by paying it forward to other parents by supporting them to find courage to start their own recovery journey. Lauren received the Caron Alumni Award in 2012 and Jay was given Caron’s Allen H. Arrow Achievement Award in 2015. Also in 2015 Lauren and Jay received the Catherine L. Caron Outstanding Leadership Award. Lauren has been recognized by Turnbridge with the Phase I Employee of the year award in 2013, The Turnbridge Award in 2014 and The Paul Tomko Most Dedicated Employee Award in 2018.
Lauren and Jay feel very blessed to be the parents of Greg, Greg’s wife Colleen and Madeline, all of whom are in long term recovery.
BIOGRAPHY- Dina LaPolt
Dina LaPolt is the founder of LaPolt Law, a Los Angeles-based law firm representing some of the world’s top entertainers and entrepreneurs. She is an expert at solving sophisticated legal and business issues relating to contracts, copyrights, trademarks, rights of publicity, and litigation.
Her background in law, music and teaching, and her exceptional attention to detail, combine for an approach to client problem-solving that is unique in the industry. She also serves as a forceful activist for creators and celebrities, working on legislative matters that affect the rights of her clients.
Through innovative deals, highly personalized service, social justice initiatives, and a passion for doing right by artists, LaPolt Law consistently ranks among the top firms in the entertainment industry — and is the only law firm of its stature founded and operated by a sole female attorney.
LaPolt’s industry-leading expertise has changed the lives of thousands of music creators, notably through a range of legislative issues, including a landmark update to copyright law — 2018's Music Modernization Act. She scored another crucial public policy win in 2020 when her work with Congress ensured music professionals would be eligible for pandemic relief via The CARES Act.
That same year, LaPolt’s advocacy also led to the repeal of New York Law 50-A, that had been one of the strongest police secrecy laws in the country. In 2016 she orchestrated a lawsuit on behalf of Songwriters of North America (SONA) against the U.S. Department of Justice to fight a licensing mandate that would have devastated the incomes of songwriters worldwide.
From a single client in 2001, LaPolt Law’s roster is now among the most diverse in the industry and includes top music artists from an array of genres; iconic catalogues and a growing number of fashion, beauty and lifestyle influencers. The powerhouse boutique also specializes in catalogue sales, brand partnerships, executive employment contracts and emerging media (NFTs, Web3).
LaPolt, a 1996 graduate of John F. Kennedy School of Law, and earlier the State University of New York, New Paltz (where she earned a bachelor’s in music), has taught and lectured throughout the U.S., Canada and Europe. For nearly 20 years she taught the popular UCLA Extension course, “Legal and Practical Aspects of the Music Business” — a class so comprehensive it became a rite-of-passage for industry newcomers and veterans alike.
Among LaPolt’s earliest clients was the activist Afeni Shakur, (mother of Tupac Shakur), with whom she worked for 13 years after helping her secure the rights to her son’s estate. LaPolt and Shakur ultimately oversaw the release of ten posthumous Tupac albums and several books, among them the critically acclaimed The Rose That Grew from Concrete.
LaPolt was a co-producer of the Oscar-nominated documentary Tupac: Resurrection, and in 2022 was engaged by the Shakur estate to produce Peace, Love & Respect: The Afeni Shakur Story, chronicling the activist’s work as a key figure in the Black Panther party.
An outspoken critic of racially motivated laws, LaPolt helped secure the high-profile release of rap artist 21 Savage from an ICE detention center in 2019 after he was unfairly targeted by the Trump Administration due to his race and immigration status. Separately, she took on the Trump administration again (and again) to prevent its unlicensed use of the music of her clients.
Most recently LaPolt has been a pivotal advisor to members of Congress on The RAP Act (Restoring Artistic Protection Act), which aims to rein in the practice of citing an artist’s rap lyrics as evidence in legal proceedings against them.
The first-of-its-kind bill, introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives in July of 2022, has disproportionately targeted Black men, an issue LaPolt wrote about for Variety.
In 2021 she was honored for her activism in the Black community as the recipient, alongside civil rights attorney Ben Crump, of The Black Music Action Coalition’s Agent of Change Award.
In 2019 LaPolt became the youngest attorney — and only the second woman in history — to receive The Recording Academy’s prestigious Service Award at its annual Entertainment Law Initiative event. That same year she was inducted into Billboard’s Women in Music Hall of Fame.
She is frequently named to many 'best-of' lists, including Billboard’s Power 100, The Hollywood Reporter’s Power Lawyers, Variety’s Dealmakers Impact Report, Super Lawyers, and others.
A co-founder and board-member of Songwriters of North America (SONA), LaPolt also serves on the boards of We Are R.I.S.E. (a developmental skills non-profit for girls of color) and City of Hope’s Music, Film and Entertainment Group.
Since 2022 she has served on the board of the Neil Lasher Music Fund — a non-profit that provides financial assistance for addiction and recovery treatment to those in the music business. LaPolt is sober and has been in recovery since April 19, 1998.