Big Thought’s “Big Night 2023” is less than a month away and all the big elements are in place. Taking place at The Factory in Deep Ellum on Saturday, March 4, the fundraiser boasts leadership including Event Co-Chairs Lynn and Allan McBee and Christa and Ketric Sanford with Honorary Co-Chairs Sasha and DeMarcus Lawrence and Donna Wilhelm.
Serving as host for the night of cocktailing, a seated dinner, a live auction and youth-led entertainment will be multi-award winning media personality, author and actor Bevy Smith, who emphasizes her role as a mentor most importantly.
According to Bevy, “I wear many titles – author, TV host, motivational speaker – but the title I love most is that of mentor. Mentoring young people (especially from disadvantaged communities) is my greatest accomplishment. Giving them access to art through ‘Cool Culture’ – an arts education program based in New York, hosting the Ali Forney Center awards gala which helps LGBTQ youth find a voice, or working with the WEEN academy – a mentoring program for young ladies looking for a career in entertainment – this work has been my passion! I look forward to adding Big Thought to my list of philanthropic endeavors.”
A highlight of the night will be the presentation of the Big Thought awards to the following:
- The Mitch Jericho Visionary Voice Award to Oak Cliff native Aria Jones, who currently serves as Big Thought’s Site Guide for the Community Action Team.
- The Gigi Antoni Courageous Creator Award to Dallas County Juvenile Center Pre-Adjudication Manager Roger Taylor.
- The Edith O’Donnell Legacy Leadership Award to formerDallas Independent School District Superintendent Dr. Michael Hinojosa.
With tickets ranging from $300 to $1,500 and sponsorships starting at $5,000, proceeds from the event will support Big Thought’s mission “to close the opportunity gap by equipping all youth in marginalized communities with the skills and tools they need to imagine and create their best lives and a better world.”
DeMarcus added, “I understand what it means to come from a tough background, and I want to help kids become leaders. That’s why I chose Big Thought and what they represent and stand for.”
* Graphic/photo provided by Big Thought ** Photo credit: Willie and Kim Photography