On November 27th, the Fedcap family of agencies hosted its inaugural Possible of Possible Gala. Guided by the belief that we are better together, Fedcap, Single Stop USA, Easterseals, Dixon Center for Military and Veterans Services, ReServe and Wildcat honored distinguished supporters, and the individuals and families we are privileged to serve. Over 400 people attended the evening event at Gotham Hall in Manhattan.
Fedcap President and CEO Christine McMahon talked about the meaning of the Power of Possible. “These powerful words serve as the foundation for what we do every single day across our growing family of agencies. When you believe that achieving a dream is possible., and when you are inspired by those around you to aim high, dreams become reality.”
In introductory remarks, Fedcap Board Chair Mark O’Donoghue spoke about the transformation and growth of the Fedcap family of agencies, and the opportunity to impact more lives. Asking the audience to consider what the Power of Possible can accomplish, Mark introduced a Year in Review video that powerfully highlighted the agencies’ collective work in 2017. Michael Friedman, Chair of the Easterseals New York Board of Directors, offered greetings from the Easterseals community, saying Easterseals “is one of the most powerful voices in the country advocating for a world where people with disabilities have equal access to opportunities.”
Michael Weinstein, Chairman of the ReServe and Single Stop USA Boards of Directors, introduced a testimonial video to three esteemed members of the Fedcap community who passed away this year; Jack Rosenthal, ReServe co-founder and Pulitzer Prize winning journalist; Marty Silberberg, who served as Fedcap’s fifth board chair and was the first recipient of the Leo Mayer Award for Distinguished Service, and Bob Fawls, a member and past chair of the CWS Board of Director. “Marty was one of Fedcap’s most revered Board members, who always asked the hard questions. Jack Rosenthal was the ultimate optimist who believed in the ideals of equality and justice. Bob Fawls was one of the driving forces—really a life force– behind the continued growth of CWS in Boston.”
Col. David Sutherland, Chairman, Dixon Center for Military and Veterans Services, was introduced by Fedcap board member Larry Ach, who described him as a “man that embodies the values of the army: honor, loyalty, duty, respect, selfless service, integrity and personal courage.” Col. Sutherland presented Frank Gaudio, Veterans Chairman, PwC Charitable Foundation Trustee and Leader of their Veterans Program Initiative, with the Dixon Center’s Eugene & Ruth Freedman Leadership Award.
Peter Samuels, Chair of Wildcat and member of Fedcap’s Board of Directors, introduced United States District Judge Deborah Batts, who was honored for her work and recognized the work of Fedcap and Wildcat. “I have seen the profound result of your work. What you do gives people second chances, you help them create a life with options and thus change lives for generations.”
Leslie Fields, a remarkable woman who overcame abuse, addiction and incarceration, shared her powerful story of perseverance and hope. “I didn’t give up. Believe in yourself, and never accept defeat.”
Fedcap board member Ken Raisler introduced Madison Pellegrino, a nine-year-old child who was inspired to start a business to raise funds for Easterseals, which did so much to help her little sister with Down’s Syndrome. “The most important thing I’ve learned is that just one small act of kindness can open a door to endless possibilities, and inspire other people to do the same,” Madison said.
In closing remarks, Fedcap board member Malvina Kay quoted the words of Winston Churchill – words that aptly describe what drives the work of the Fedcap family of agencies: “We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.”