On Thursday, September 1, over 900 guests gathered at the Indianapolis Marriott Downtown to attend BBBSCI’s largest annual fundraiser, The Main Event. Sponsored by NextGear Capital, the evening featured cocktails, dinner, and silent and live auctions. However, the highlight of the evening was a speech given by Coach Tony Dungy on the impact of mentoring.
“It’s amazing the difference taking an interest in a child’s life can make,” Coach Dungy said. In his keynote address, Coach Dungy spoke about the power of mentoring and the importance of getting involved in the community. He said giving back to the community, especially by investing in the lives of children, was a very important aspect of the teams he coached.
“What I tell my teams – it’s not what we do – it’s how we do it; how we go about making our city better is so important,” he said to The Main Event guests. “If all football teams do is go to Super Bowls and not give back to their communities, it’s a wasted opportunity.”
Coach Dungy, who was recently inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, described the impact of various mentors throughout his life. He credited those mentors with helping him succeed as a student, player, and coach throughout his life. Patty Turner, Senior Director of Corporate Administration of NextGear Capital and BBBSCI Board Member, said the first hand perspective from Coach Dungy was inspiring.
“I think Coach Dungy summed it up best when he talked about the different mentors throughout his life and what has molded him in to the man he is today,” she shared. “Kids today need to be mentored not just at home, but in every aspect of their life and BBBS works diligently to give those kids who may not have access to the mentors like Coach Dungy a leg up.”
We want to give a big thank you to Coach Tony Dungy; our title sponsor NextGear Capital; our generous sponsors of the evening; Anthony Calhoun, event EMCEE; the staff at the Indianapolis Marriott Downtown; The Main Event Committee; the BBBSCI Board of Directors; Big Couple Bryan and Gwen Langley and their Little Brother Kennedy for speaking during the event; Kennedy’s mother Darlene for sharing her story with BBBSCI; Darin Lawson from Wickliff Auctioneers; and everyone who attended The Main Event.
“This year’s event was the most successful in our agency’s history – raising more than $400,000 to support our program,” Darcey Palmer-Shultz, BBBSCI Chief Executive Officer said. “We are very grateful to every person and company that participated. It’s a true testament to our community’s support of local kids and families. We’ve got a lot to do to make sure all kids have the opportunity and support to succeed, and thanks to this generosity, Big Brothers Big Sisters is already hard at work pairing more girls and boys with mentors who will help make that possible.”
To see pictures from the event, click here.