Kristen Sanger And Cindy Stager To Co-Chair The Family Place’s Texas Trailblazer Luncheon With Gretchen Carlson As Keynote Speaker

While all the recent headlines have been about The Family Place’s brick-and-mortar successes (the new Ann Moody Center and Texas’ first men’s shelter), behind the scenes work is continuing to raise funds for the organization’s various programs.

In addition to the Partners Card fall fundraiser celebrating its 25th anniversary from October 27-November 5, the annual Texas Trailblazer Luncheon has lined up a couple of tested fundraising co-chairs — Kristen Sanger and Cindy Stager.

Kristen Sanger (File photo)

Cindy Stager (File photo)

Between the two of ‘em, they’ve held various leadership roles for events benefiting Community Partners of Dallas, Housing Crisis Center, Heroes for Children, The Retina Foundation of the Southwest, Dallas Habitat for Humanity, American Heart Association, TACA and, of course, The Family Place, to name a few.

Interestingly, they both co-chaired the annual Cattle Baron’s Ball, but at different times. Kristen co-chaired the American Cancer Society fundraiser in 2012 and Cindy in 2014.

With all the expertise, it’s no surprise that the two ladies are co-chairing the 2017 Texas Trailblazer Luncheon on Friday, October 6, at the Hilton Anatole. For the keynote speaker, they’re having former FOX News Channel host Gretchen Carlson. In addition to being Miss America in 1989 and having recently made headlines about sexual harassment in the workplace, the 5’3” blonde used to work at KXAS-NBC from 1998-2000.

Also on the luncheon agenda will be the annual Trailblazer Awards that are presented to “those who create positive change and contribute to the quality of life in our community.” As for this year’s awardees, stay tuned.

PS — You might want to send Gretchen a birthday card on Wednesday.

Equest Women’s Auxiliary Shopped And Partied Among The Luscious Lips And Fashions Of Alice And Olivia

Alice and Olivia lips

Alice and Olivia lips

With season in high throttle, a cluster of guests were filling Alice and Olivia on Tuesday, September 13. The draw and beneficiary was the Equest Women’s Auxiliary, which is holding its annual Equest Fashion Show chaired by Kara Axley. While no equine ambassadors were present, the mannequins were dressed to the max and the displays were filled with luscious lips. Fashion-loving and newly-engaged Fleming Longino was an early arrival to check out the goodies.

Kara Axley and

Kara Axley and Fleming Longino

Di Johnston and Kathy Fielder

Di Johnston and Kathy Fielder

Equest Board Member Kathy Fielder dropped by to check out a try-on in the dressing room, handed over her charge card and was off. Not bad. A percentage of the evening’s sales went to Equest.

When asked how the Equest Women’s Auxiliary Luncheon and Style Show on Tuesday, October 4, at Brook Hollow was going, Equest Women’s Auxiliary President Di Johnston reported that it was moving along smoothly. Once again the Jan Strimple-produced fashion show will feature highlights from Akris, Alice+Olivia, Carolina Herrera, Etro, Lela Rose, Market and St. John.

Unlike the cross-town Texas Trailblazer Luncheon being held smack-dab on the same day at the same time, Di suggested that it was an apple and oranges situation. One is an elegant and intimate fashion show and the other is a 1,000 plus award presentation with speaker. The fact is both groups are benefiting area families and that’s what matters.

JUST IN: 20th Anniversary Texas Trailblazers Are Very Well Known In These Parts

The thermometers aren’t the only things heating up. Those folks over at The Family Place are hotter than the tarmac at DFW International. No sooner had they sent word about Rhonda Sargent Chambers being honorary chair for the Partners Card 2015, than Texas Trailblazer Luncheon Co-Chairs Michaela Dyer and Layne Pitzer and Honorary Chair Debbie Taylor shared news about the recipients of The Family Place’s 20th Anniversary Texas Trailblazer Awards. And if you don’t know these names, you’ve been in a coma for a few decades or have been held incommunicado by the “MiB.”

  • Nancy Nasher*

    Nancy Nasher*

    The Texas Trailblazer will be presented to Nancy Nasher, who had carried on her parents’ legacy for community involvement via NorthPark Center and the Nasher Sculpture Center. This award “recognizes someone who has accomplished a ‘first’ and opened the doors of opportunity for other people and made significant contributions either in their community, business or profession. No matter what the accomplishments, however, the Trailblazer is someone who has blazed a trail for others to follow.” It is especially touching that the 20th anniversary of Texas Trailblazer is saluting Nancy as NorthPark celebrates its 50th

  • Robert "Bob" Miller (File photo)

    Robert “Bob” Miller (File photo)

    And speaking of those who have bested the test of time, the Real-Life Hero Award will be presented to 91-year-young Robert “Bob” Miller for his lifetime of contributions to philanthropic and fundraising news during his 64 years at The Dallas Morning News. Having worked in all aspects of the paper’s news department including city editor, he took on the challenge of writing a business column when most people were retiring. Leave it to Bob. He turned the column into the “go-to” place to be for nonprofits and businesses to share their news and successes.

  • United Way of Metropolitan Dallas*

    United Way of Metropolitan Dallas*

    Receiving the Advocacy Award will be The United Way of Metropolitan Dallas that has supported North Texas’ efforts “to create long-term change through investing in solutions that produce healthy, well-educated and financially stable individuals and families” for 90 years. Gee. Bob was one year old when the United Way kicked off. BTW, The Family Place has been a recipient of United Way support for the past 30 years.

  • The final awards — The Family Place Youth Service Award and Scholarship — will be presented to Erin Baptiste and Julissa Figueroa for “their contribution and participation in The Family Place Be Project program, acting as mentors to educate their peers about healthy relationships in an effort to preventing bullying, teen dating violence and sexual assault.” Erin will use her scholarship to attend the University of Colorado at Boulder and Julissa will be going to The University of Texas at San Antonio.

Expect this luncheon to be easy sell-out with the recipients’ fan clubs and actress Marisa Tomei as the keynote speaker for the Thursday, October 1st event at the Hilton Anatole. Tickets and sponsorships are officially available now. You’ve been warned.

* Graphic and photo provided by The Family Place

Laura And George W. Bush To Serve As Distinguished Chairs For 14th Annual Texas Trailblazer Luncheon

And the big, boldface names just keep coming in for The Family Place’s 14th Annual Texas Trailblazer Luncheon. Co-Chairs Stephanie and Travis Hollman, Carol Seay and Stephanie Seay just reported that former first couple Laura and George W. Bush have signed on as the “Distinguished Chairs” for the Wednesday, September 17th fundraiser at the Anatole.

George and Laura Bush (File photo)

George and Laura Bush (File photo)

But then what would you expect when the event is honoring the legacy of the late Harold Simmons?

Joe Torre*

Joe Torre*

As for Joe Torre, who will be headline “speaker”. . . okay, he’s not going to be at a podium giving a lecture. He’s gonna being interviewed by none other than WFAA’s Dale Hansen.

Well, back to Joe. In a Sunday interview with Larry King, he revealed how the domestic abuse he witnessed as a child affected his professional life:

“I probably didn’t enjoy my playing career as much as I really should have because if I didn’t get any hits I would really torture myself thinking I let everybody down. And of course if I did hit, I felt like I was worthy…It wasn’t until I went through a symposium which told me that all the abuse that was going on at my home was contributing to these feelings of insignificance and insecurity and nervousness.”

The former baseball legend’s being inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame this Sunday adding to the “Wow!” factor of his presence come September.

* Photo provided by The Family Place

JUST IN: Baseball Legend Joe Torre To Headline The Family Place’s Texas Trailblazer Luncheon On September 17

Gene Jones, Laura Bush and Charlotte Anderson

Gene Jones, Laura Bush and Charlotte Anderson

Ran into Carol Seay at the Salvation Army Fashion Show yesterday at Brook Hollow where former First Lady Laura Bush was honorary chair and the “experienced” clothes were disappearing from the racks.

But more about the show and luncheon later. What was pried out of Carol is that former All-Star baseball player, four-time World Series champion manger of the New York Yankee Joe Torre will be the headliner at The Family Place’s September 17th Texas Trailblazer Luncheon at the Hilton Anatole.

This summer Joe will be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Oh, what’s the connection between the baseball legend and domestic abuse? Margaret’s Place.

What’s Margaret’s Place? So many questions, but good ones!

Joe and his wife Ali created Safe At Home Foundation and established Margaret’s Places in New York, New Jersey and California, where middle and high school students are provided with a “’safe room’ to talk to each other and a professional counselor trained in domestic violence intervention and prevention about violence-related issues.”

The reason for creating such a program was because as Joe puts it, “When I was growing up, my father was a bully. My mother [Margaret] faced verbal and physical abuse from my father. If he didn’t like the food mom made, he would throw it against the wall. He used to make her get up in the middle of the night to cook for friends he brought home.

“Although I did not get phys­i­cally abused myself, I grew up in fear because my mom did. I was shy and dad would make fun of me. When­ever I saw his car in the dri­ve­way, I didn’t want to go home. One win­ter, when I was 12, my older brother Frank (20) said to my father, ‘We want you out of the house. We don’t want any­thing other than the house we live in. We don’t want any­thing from you. Just leave.’ And he left.

“Grow­ing up in a home where there was domes­tic vio­lence was very dif­fi­cult and left last­ing scars. Although I didn’t real­ize it then, I used to feel like the abuse was my fault. I felt help­less and alone. For many years, I felt ashamed and worthless.

“In those days, no one in my neigh­bor­hood knew what was hap­pen­ing in my home, or if they did, nobody talked about it. I did not talk about it because I was afraid. I didn’t know who to turn to for help.”

Carol along with daughter-in-law Stephanie Seay and Stephanie and Travis Hollman are co-chairing the event.

More news will be developing. Stay tuned.