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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  January 2, 2017

Media Contact: Laila Mokhiber | (202) 223-1220 or laila@unrwausa.org

Kal Penn to Compete in Culinary Battle for Palestine Refugees on All-New “MasterChef Celebrity Showdown” TONIGHT on FOX

Actor Kal Penn, of ABC’s Designated Survivor, will be competing in a culinary competition, MasterChef Celebrity Showdown, airing tonight, Monday, January 2, 2017 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX.

Penn's breakthrough film role was in the comedy Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle (2004). He also spent several seasons on the TV drama House before taking a sabbatical from acting to work for President Obama’s administration.

This two-hour special puts each celebrity competitor to the test in the kitchen, and features the first-ever battle royale between MasterChef’s own Gordon Ramsay and Christina Tosi, chef, founder, and owner of Momofuku Milk Bar. In each face-off, more than bragging rights are at stake – the winners earn prize money for the charities of their choice.

Penn is competing in support of UNRWA USA, an independent nonprofit organization which provides humanitarian support to Palestine refugees in Gaza and Syria through the United Nations.

UNRWA USA supports the humanitarian work of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA). Established in 1949, UNRWA provides education, healthcare, emergency protection, and other human development programs to over 5 million Palestine refugees across the Middle East, and is the only organization dedicated to providing critical assistance to Palestine refugees in Syria. Donations made to UNRWA USA by American citizens are tax deductible.

Other celebrity competitors include Empire’s Trai Byers and Grace Gealey Byers; TV personalities Nene and Gregg LeakesSon of Zorn’s Cheryl Hines; NFL legends Ronde Barber and Tiki Barber; and rock music icon twins Joel Madden and Benji Madden. Plus, Anthony Anderson from Black-ish has partnered with Chef Gordon Ramsay to take on Lethal Weapon’s Jordana Brewster and Chef Christina Tosi.