An Evening to Celebrate Gifted Education

by Abby Daniels, Director of Development & Communications

On November 17th, under twinkling patio lights amidst festive fall décor, a vibrant group of gifted education advocates gathered to support the Institute for Educational Advancement’s (IEA) programs and services.

IEA’s annual fundraiser, the Awards Dinner & Celebration, was attended by 90 guests, who enjoyed a cocktail reception featuring music by IEA Academy students Calvin Zheng and Cadence and Dante Dam. Over 40 auction packages, including VIP tours, novelty items, specialty artwork, and more, provided excitement for guests who donated over $5,000 through their auction donations.

Cadence and Dante Dam, with parents Jason Dam and Amy Choi, entertained guests on the piano.

celebrate gifted educationGuests perusing the exciting silent auction packages.

Following a three-course dinner and music provided by the JBK Jazz Trio, the program was MC’d by Dennis Finnerman and included remarks from IEA President Betsy Jones, EXPLORE Alumna Kaitlyn Chen and EXPLORE Mentor Dr. Amy Catlin-Jairazbhoy. Three individuals also received awards from IEA for their tremendous work to support gifted students: IEA Instructor Dr. Tony Travouillon received the Educator Award and Sandy and Jason Roberts of Math Academy received the Community Advocate Award.

Dennis Finnerman delights guests as Master of Ceremonies.

EXPLORE alumni Kaitlyn Chen shares her summer externship experience with guests.

Tony Travouillon received the Educator Award and Jason and Sandy Roberts received the Community Advocate Award.

The event concluded with a “Fund-A-Future” live auction, during which guests donated nearly $7,000 to support IEA’s programs and services to serve gifted youth and their families.

Event sponsors, the An family.

Brian Queen, Dick and Barbara Baptie, Karen Connolly and Elizabeth Surman enjoy conversation over dinner.

Volunteer and IEA Academy student Gabriel Fergesen, IEA Academy student and evening’s musician Dante Dam, and IEA Academy instructor Grayson Kent peruse the silent auction together.

IEA thanks all event sponsors, in-kind donors, program ad sponsors, guests, speakers and supporters for their event participation. The event’s digital program can be found here.

It’s not too late to support IEA in 2017! Make a gift today online. Gifts of all sizes are appreciated, and go to support those in need of IEA’s programs and services.

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