Academy Prep's Dinner of Champions
Lesson learned at Academy Prep's second annual Dinner of Champions: "We're a family," said head of school Lincoln Tamayo, echoed by teachers, board members and the fifth-grade dinner hosts March 8 at the Ybor City campus. The 200 guests also learned that all 111 students at the rigorous middle school play chess, are expected to maintain a B average and spend Saturdays on educational field trips.
Students performed a musical medley ranging from Elvis to the funky chicken to gospel during dinner at neon-lit tables on the covered playground.
Academy Prep grad Cavesha Anderson and her mom, Carolyn Allen, helped with U.S. Attorney's Office spokesman William Daniels' pitch. "It costs $15,000 to attend Academy Prep ... incarceration about $32,000," he said, ultimately raising 11 scholarships.
Girl Scouts 2012 Women of Distinction luncheon
Happy 100th birthday Girl Scouts and congratulations 2012 Women of Distinction. Robin DeLaVergne, executive director of Tampa General Hospital Foundation; Lt. Col. Deirdre Dixon, master parachutist and head of ROTC at the University of Tampa; Jean Gibson, Lake Wales arts advocate, and Gwin Londrigan, Publix senior consultant, were honored March 13 for living the Girl Scout Promise to help people at all times.
Jen Holloway of Bay News 9 introduced luncheon speaker Joan Lunden, host of Good Morning America for nearly two decades, to 780 guests at A La Carte Event Pavilion. Lunden spoke of her balancing act as entrepreneur, author, (her book, Chicken Soup for the Soul: Family Caregivers, was published that day) and mother of seven: three girls, ages 24, 29 and 31, and two sets of fraternal twins, ages 7 and 8.
"Now that we (women) have it all, how do we do it all?'' Lunden asked, urging the crowd to "share stories, struggles and successes, especially with young women."
Girl Scouts of West Central Florida CEO Kim Jowell, lunch chairwoman April Monteith and honorary chairwoman Jan Platt shared the event's success: Net proceeds of $100,000 will benefit 22,000 local Girl Scouts.
The Links' jazz art auction
Members of the dressed-up crowd didn't sit on their hands at the Links' lively Jazz Art Auction. Bidding stayed steady, said longtime member Maisie Reddy, to support projects at Sheehy Elementary, Van Buren Middle and St. Peter Claver.
With about 50 active members and 11 alums, the Tampa chapter of the African-American women's service club stages a major fundraiser every other year, president Ruth Duncan Bell said.
That made Saturday night's party highly anticipated by the 550 guests.
Patrons came early to preview artwork and jewelry at the InterContinental hotel. Soon everyone else joined them for cocktails, hors d'oeuvres and live jazz in the atrium. Desserts enticed as auction bidders filled the ballroom.
The Links also sponsor a college scholarship for a deserving high school senior and help out medical students with some expenses.