Body Oak Cliff Founder Joel Pulis And Sheriff Lupe Valdez To Receive The Well Community’s First Founder’s Award At Recovery Live Benefit Concert

The Well Community is adding a new element to its annual Recovery Live Benefit Concert on Thursday, November 30, at The Kessler. In the past, the fundraiser to help adults dealing with severe mental illnesses has just a great time with great music.

Lupe Valdez (File photo)

But after four years, they decided to put some bells and whistles to the festivities. In addition to having WFAA’s Brett Shipp as emcee and Floramay Holliday and Over the River and The Rosemont Kings performing, they’ve added a silent auction and the Founder’s Award.

This first-time award will be presented to Body Oak Cliff Founder Joel Pulis and Sheriff Lupe Valdez.

According to The Well Community Executive Director Alice Zaccarello, “This award has been created to acknowledge those whose action have opened up new avenues of recovery and hope to individuals suffering from mental illnesses.”

Event sponsors include Good Space, Ged Dipprey Realtor, Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate, Bret and Karen Schuch, Steven and Dawn Camp, Roland Warnock, Hanes and Boone LLP, K and L Gates LLP, Beth and Wes Keyes, Jim Lake Advisors LLC, Republic Title Turtle Creek, Amy Carenza and Nathan Offerdahl, Potpourri of Silk, Soap Hope, Shirlee and Charles Bealke, Suzanne and Wayne Braddick, Diana and David Ezzell, Scott Griggs, Colleen and Ken Kelley, Cornerstone Home Lending, Masterman, La Calle Doce and El Ranchito, Methodist Medical System, Norma’s Café, RPGA Design Group, Ryan Frahm – Origins Bank Home, Lending, Square Foot and Vickie Turner.

Tickets start at $50. And if you’re already got plans that night, consider taking a tour of The Well Community and discover the various programs that are offered to help deal with an very real challenge within lives.

MySweetCharity Opportunity: Homeward Bound Inc.

UPDATE: Due to damage from spring rains, Irving will not be able to have our site ready in four weeks! Mountain Creek Park is north of I-30 on MacArthur to Hunter Ferrell Road east or Loop 12 west on Shady Grove to Nursery south which runs into Hunter Ferrell, or continue on Shady Grove to MacArthur south to Hunter Ferrell then east.

According to Homeward Bound Inc. Community Communication Director Betsy Simnacher,

“The Run for Recovery 5K/10K benefits the nonprofit Homeward Bound. Homeward Bound’s mission is to save families and change lives by treating people with mental illness, and drug and alcohol addiction.

“The Saturday, September 12th run in Irving is being presented by 2nd Chance Ministries of Farmers Branch. The sponsor is Idabel Chiropractic Clinic, and the run website is www.runforrecovery.com. The site is Richardson Park on Campion Trails in Irving.

“Very few of Homeward Bound’s clients can pay for treatment, so the 501(c)(3) nonprofit relies on grants and donations to fund treatment for about 5,000 clients each year. Homeward Bound’s 152-bed Dallas facility is the largest of its kind in North Texas and one of the largest in Texas.

“Clients will be running but will not be able to pay the registration fee, so 2nd Chance Ministries is providing an option on the run website for people to sponsor runners. All donations will go directly to Homeward Bound’s mission to help people achieve recovery. The run is just one of the healthy alternatives Homeward Bound offers to its clients, who are motivated to overcome mental illness and addiction.

“Most will be successful. Typically, clients stay from four to 30 days. Eighty percent will finish treatment. We know that program completion usually indicates a long-term positive result. More than 75 percent checked at a three-month follow-up are still clean and sober.

“We know that people who come to us sincerely want to stop cycling through the emergency room and end the downward spiral of homelessness and poverty. They tell us so in messages that arrive through our website. A typical message reads: ‘I’m so so tired but at the same time so so scared. I’ve tried getting sober before only to get everybody’s hopes up, and I let them down. Very, very tired of hurting people around me, including myself.’

“We also hear from them on the other side, when they complete treatment. ‘This place saved my life. Without the staff, I would probably be dead. I love them all dearly,’ was a recent comment on our Facebook page.

“We hope you will join us in our mission by sponsoring one of our runners, running yourself, or donating through the Run for Recovery website (click on ‘Register Now’ for all these options) or our own website, www.homewardboundinc.org. Thank you.”

A Beacon Of Hope Luncheon Father-Daughter Speakers Reveal How The McIngvale Family Work Through Mental Illness

The father-daughter team of Jim “Mattress Max” McIngvale and Elizabeth McIngvale-Cegelski brought their story of struggling with Elizabeth’s obsessive-compulsive disorder to the Beacon of Hope Luncheon on Wednesday, February 11.

With more than 450 guests attending the Grant Halliburton Foundation fundraiser at the Westin Galleria, they kicked things off w

Elizabeth McIngvale-Cegelski and Ann Mirabito*

Elizabeth McIngvale-Cegelski and Ann Mirabito*

Jim McIngvale*

Jim McIngvale*

ith a video interview with Barbara Walters that aired on “Good Morning America” 10 years ago. That’s how long the McIngvales have been warning the world of the “horrors and feelings of hopelessness mental illness brought to their family.”

Elizabeth’s “hope is given in the form of education and empowerment, removing the stigma of mental illness and improving access to help.”

Neatly coinciding with the McIngvales’ focus on young people and their families battling emotional and mental issues was the announcement regarding Teen Contact. Despite the Contact Crisis Line being shuttered in December, the Grant Halliburton Foundation has integrated the Crisis Line’s Teen Contact into its own programming by training more than 3,200 students and staffers.

This development fits with the Foundation’s mission “to help prevent suicide, promote better mental health and strengthen the network of mental health resources for teens and young adults.”

(Editor’s note: Someone might want to update the Grant Halliburton Foundation’s website. It still lists the Contact Crisis Line’s services as being in operation. Families in distress don’t need to get an “out-of-service” message.

UPDATE (Saturday, February 28, at 4:18 p.m.): A Grant Halliburton Foundation representative just reported the following: “The GHF website has been updated.” Congratulations on a speedy response, GHF! BTW, it’s a very thorough list of services available to help those seeking better mental health.

* Photo credit: Dana and Daniel Driensky

Houston’s Mattress Mack And Daughter Liz McIngvale To Headline “A Beacon Of Hope”

Back in the 1980’s, Houston had three legendary personalities known to insiders as “The Three M’s.” That’s because each of their first monikers started with a “M” and they were bigger-than-life — Houston Chronicle columnist Maxine Mesinger, KTRK consumer reporter Marvin Zindler and Mattress Mack (aka Jim McIngvale), whose TV commercials for his furniture store literally jumped off the screen.

Jim CIngvale*

Jim McIngvale*

Both Maxine and Marvin have gone to the Big H in the sky, but Mack is still rocking and rolling. Having graduated from Dallas’ Bishop Lynch High School in 1969, he headed down to Houston to make his fortune. But Lady Luck wasn’t being very nice at first.

First a potential investor in his Gallery Furniture bailed on him. Then the oil industry did the same thing to Houston as a whole. With his last $10,000, Mack put it all in area TV commercials in 1983. Not happy with what was being produced, he took over appearing in the commercial pulling money out of his pocket and shouting, “Gallery Furniture saves you money!

Over the years, Mack and Gallery Furniture grew in size, success and fame. He was the P.T. Barnum of furniture. There was the unmarked truck episode. Originally marketing to lower-income customers, Mack announced that he had arranged for an unmarked truck to deliver his furniture to West University clients so as not to embarrass them.

And then there was the Super Bowl XLVIII promotion that guaranteed a full refund on any purchase of more than $6,000 if the Seattle Seahawks won. Sales boomed with furniture being delivered up to the fourth quarter. The Seahawks won. He refunded $7M to customers. Mack told ABC13, “As far as financially, we didn’t do well,” he said. “But we did a great job building the brand and delighting customers and if we do that, the business will continue to grow.”

He most recently refunded more than $4.2M to 420 customers who bet against the Astros this past October. Again, his attitude was “The customers are happy. We’re happy.”

Liz McIngvale*

Liz McIngvale*

But Mack wasn’t just all business. He was into philanthropy raising money for the Houston Symphony and The Salvation Army and funding the U.S.’s first mobile stroke unit.

Mack has also been a parent and that’s what bringing him to Dallas on Wednesday, February 11, for “A Beacon of Hope Luncheon” at the Westin Galleria. He and his daughter Liz McIngvale-Cegelski will “share the compelling story of their family’s journey through years of battling severe mental illness, told from the viewpoints of both parent and child.”

There were times when Liz’s Obsessive Compulsive Disorder had her washing her hands more than 100 times a day and and then trying to open doors with her foot.

Bob and Maloree Banks*

Bob and Maloree Banks*

Presented by the David B. Miller Family Foundation, the luncheon is being chaired by Maloree and Bob Banks to raise funds for the Grant Halliburton Foundation.

This luncheon may not “save you money,” but it just may save your well being.

* Photos provided by
 A Beacon of Hope