Friday, October 21, 2011

A celebration of giving!

Working here at the Red Cross, I am constantly amazed by the sacrifices people are willing to make to help others.  Whether it be volunteering to get a call in the middle of the night to help a family whose house has just burned down, or making the financial donation that allows us to provide that family with the food, clothing and shelter they need, the people of Western New York constantly show us that Buffalo truly is "The City of Good Neighbors."

Earlier this week, at this year's "In Celebration of Giving" dinner at the Twentieth Century Club (which is every bit as beautiful as our Clement Mansion) we had the opportunity to say "thank you" for these gifts of time, talent, and treasure.

After honoring Calspan and Matrix Direct, our BASH Commander-in-Chief sponsors, Executive Director Nancy Blaschak told the dozens of Red Cross supporters in attendance the story of Ruth Roberts.  In the 1990's, Ms. Roberts made the largest single donation to the captial campaign that allowed us to renovate our administrative headquarters at 786 Delaware Avenue, but refused to allow us to name anything in the building after her.  She did, however, allow us to present and award in her name. 

Murray Covello holds the Ruth C. Roberts Award with some
of his Praxair, Inc. colleagues
This year, the Ruth C. Roberts Award, recognizing an exceptional contribution to our success in a singular year, was presented to Praxair, Inc.  Often led by Vice President, Global Operations Murray Covello, who serves on our Chapter's Board of Directors, Praxair was one of the first organizations to make a $50,000 leadership gift to support our on-going flooding relief efforts in Connecticut, and has provided a total of over $105,000 to support the work of the American Red Cross.

Sr. Director of Emergency Services, Ken Turner presents
the Clara Barton Award to Diane Sargent
Of course, we would not be able to do perform our life-saving mission without the amazing gifts of time and talent from our volunteers.  The American Red Cross was proud to honor Diane Sargent with the Clara Barton Award, the Chapter's highest honor, presented to an individual whose volunteer accomplishments have made a positive and profound impact on American Red Cross services.  Diane has been deployed to work on a dozen Red Cross disaster relief operations, including two weeks following this spring's devastating tornadoes in Alabama.  Diane volunteers with the Disaster Action Team in both Erie and Niagara County, responding to four separate fires in 24 hours over the Labor Day holiday.

The American Red Cross is proud to recognize our generous donors and volunteers with this great evening of fun, food, and friendship.  Thank you, again, for all that you do! 

To find out more about the many different ways you can share your gifts of time, talent or treasure, please visit our website.

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