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Joe Manganiello and Caitlin O’Connor’s Glamorous Red Carpet Debut: A Night of Elegance and Honor at COAF Gala

Joe Manganiello and Caitlin O'Connor
Joe Manganiello and Caitlin O'Connor (Credits: Getty Images)

Joe Manganiello and Caitlin O’Connor made their inaugural appearance as a couple on the red carpet. The duo graced the Children of Armenia Fund (COAF) Gala at Cipriani in New York City on Saturday night, striking poses and capturing the attention of onlookers.

The 46-year-old True Blood actor, who recently delved into his Armenian ancestry on an episode of Finding Your Roots, exuded elegance in a black suit paired with a gray shirt and a coordinating dark gray tie. In the snapshots, Manganiello was seen with his arm affectionately draped around the waist of the 33-year-old Winning Time actress.

Joe Manganiello and Caitlin O'Connor

Joe Manganiello and Caitlin O’Connor (Credits: CBS 8)

O’Connor, radiating glamour, donned an emerald green gown featuring corset detailing and a daring thigh-high slit. Her sleek bun showcased matching green earrings, and she completed the look with black and metal chain heels. The actress also reciprocated the affectionate pose, with her arm around Manganiello in the photographs.

During the event, Manganiello was honored with the COAF Humanitarian Award, as detailed on the organization’s website. The connection between the pair reportedly blossomed at an “unofficial” after party for HBO’s Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty, where they met in a hot tub and engaged in lengthy conversations, according to a source that spoke to PEOPLE in September.

From this initial encounter, Manganiello and O’Connor transitioned into “casually seeing each other,” discreetly meeting up in Los Angeles. The couple was spotted leaving a Gold’s Gym together in Venice, California, and by the end of September, they officially became a couple, even venturing “out of town together.”

Describing their dynamic, an insider shared that the two share a humorous connection, with Manganiello finding O’Connor’s wit particularly charming. The insider added, “She’s really witty, so sweet and smart. And he’s cool. He’s cool as s—.”

Representatives for Manganiello and O’Connor did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment on Saturday. This new relationship for Manganiello follows his divorce from Sofía Vergara in July after seven years of marriage, with the actor revealing a new tattoo in August honoring his Armenian heritage, featuring the word “Հրեշտակ,” which translates to “angel” in Armenian.

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