Rising Stars Youth Foundation celebrated its 10th annual gala fundraiser at the New York Athletic Club on May 14th, 2013. The event, which was in celebration of the foundation’s 17th year of incorporation, was a huge success, says founder Paul Savramis.
Q: What was the emphasis of the gala?
Paul Savramis: The emphasis was on promoting education. Rising Stars and our donors want to make sure that every child has the opportunity to receive a solid education.
Q: Who was this year’s main honoree?
Paul Savramis: We honored CEO Thomas Quinlan III of RR Donnelly and Sons as Man of the Year. We also awarded Heather Robinson, President of the Robinson Family Foundation, and ESPN’s Jay Bilas the Humanitarian and Youth Advocate awards.
Q: Where you happy with the turnout?
Paul Savramis: Absolutely. We had more than 300 guests attend the dinner. It was the foundation’s most successful gala, to-date. I feel that each year, this dinner gets better and bigger; that speaks volumes as to the work we do.
Q: What is the most satisfying part about the annual gala?
Paul Savramis: I always appreciate the generous donors and sponsors that have supported the foundation throughout the years. I am also humbled to see all of the former rising stars and their families coming back at these events every year. I’m grateful to see so many people there that have been instrumental in making Rising Stars a success. It is an amazing feeling to see the work we do being recognized by so many people.
Q: What was the highlight of the evening?
Paul Savramis: The event was emceed by ESPN and Rising Stars alumni, Jay Williams. Jay is a former player of mine and a great friend. He does a fantastic job at every event and throughout the year. The special guest appearance by CBS sports’ Bill Rafferty roast of Jay Bilas was amazing, too.
Paul Savramis and Rising Stars Youth Foundation continue to help youth remain motivated, positive, learn to cope with adversity, develop leadership skills, and – most importantly- aspire to achieve success both on and off the court.