While The Dallas Opera lovers were sipping and shopping at NorthPark’s Mulberry for the First Sight/First Night announcement reception on Wednesday, September 2, girls of all ages were gathered at Trina Turk in Highland Park Village with the munchies being provided by Bistro 31. Here’s a report from the field:
“The Host Committee of the Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas Women of Distinction Luncheon gathered to celebrate the upcoming event at Trina Turk. Hosted by Luncheon Chair Katherine Coker, Maggie Kipp and Suzy Gekiere, more than 70 ladies attended the party sipping champagne while conversations bubbled with excitement swapping summer vacation stories, back-to-school details and plans for the fall.
“The Women of Distinction Luncheon is the largest fundraiser for the Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas and will be on Wednesday, October 14, at the Hilton Anatole. Each year it recognizes outstanding women leaders in the community. This year’s recipients include the Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Jan Rees-Jones, two Women of Distinction Tincy Miller and Michele Bobadilla and two Young Women of Distinction Devin Bray and Sruthi Tummala.
“Keynote speaker Reshma Saujani, founder of Girls Who Code (girlswhocode.com), will share an inspiring message about the critical need to introduce girls to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) to pursue 21st century opportunities. Girls Who Code has received a lot of press recently and has been featured in publications such as the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, USA Today.
“’This ties beautifully to our luncheon,’ said Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas CEO Jennifer Bartkowski, who was beaming with enthusiasm over the new STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) Center of Excellence project in South Dallas, where girls can explore STEM programs and careers in a ‘living laboratory.’
“’We have raised more than $7 million to date and are set to finish phase one construction by the end of the year! In fact, Jan Rees-Jones was our first donor to the STEM Center of Excellence!’
“She said this is an important time to be a Girl Scout and that the experience is more than selling cookies. Girl Scouts help instill courage, confidence and character while teaching critical thinking and problem solving skills.
“Jennifer concluded saying, ’This event will raise more than $500,000 to invest in girls, and we hope to introduce new friends to Girl Scouts to elevate our brand and tell our story.’
“Underscoring Jennifer’s message, Katherine said she loved the Girl Scouts because it gives girls an opportunity to reach their full potential. ‘I feel there is no greater gift we can give to the next generation of young women.’
“Katherine thanked the Host Committee members for all they had done to make the event a huge success and encouraged Host Committee members to put tables together that included young girls.
“’This year we are offering a special youth ticket so be sure to bring your daughter’s and their friends so they too can hear Reshma Saujani’s inspiring message!’
“In fact, Katherine’s daughter and Girl Scout Olivia Coker attended the party with nearly a dozen of her fifth-grade girlfriends as they also geared up for the event. The energy in the room was palpable as moms made plans for buying tables together.
“A snapshot of the gathering included former Woman of Distinction Lynn McBee stopping by to support one of her favorite causes… Girl Scout Audit Committee Member and AT&T executive Michelle Thomas joining the party to represent the presenting sponsor, AT&T… Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas Board member Tegwin Pulley attending…Many women were talking about the beginning of football season. Heather Randall was headed to the UT/Notre Dame game…. Others in the crowd included Katherine’s mom Beth McHaney, Tiffany Divis, Jennifer Clark, Sara and David Martineau, Anne Besser, Kim Miller, Lisa Singleton, Elizabeth Gambrell, Sara Lee Gardner and Stephanie Stollenwerck.
“As a special treat Trina Turk generously gave 20 percent of all sales back to the Girl Scouts and Laura Downing, Ann Dyer, Jessie O’Brien, Ashley Purnell and many others walked away with shopping bags. Katherine and Maggie shopped early so they could sport Trina’s new fall fashions at the party.”
* Photo credit: Dana Driensky