Gala Held Annually To Recognize City’s Visionaries Past And Present While Benefiting Health And Wellness Needs of Boca Raton Nonprofits
The Rotary Club Downtown Boca Raton announces the George Long Award honorees, host committee and initial sponsors for this year’s Boca Raton Mayors Ball, a red carpet, black-tie dinner/dance gala to be held at Boca Raton Resort & Club on Saturday, October 14, 2017. The third annual event returns as the coveted season opener that honors the City’s elected officials who exemplify Rotary International’s motto, ‘Service Above Self’ and visionaries past and present who have elevated the community will raise funds to support health and wellness needs of Boca Raton nonprofits. It is presented in the same celebratory tradition set by the iconic cities of Miami, Fort Lauderdale and Palm Beach where Mayors Balls have long been in-demand ‘must go’ annual events.
The evening will feature a red carpet arrival and cocktail reception followed by a grand epicurean experience created by Boca Raton Resort & Club Executive Chef Andrew Roenbeck set amidst City-themed décor curated by the Boca Raton Historical Society and Museum, the live music of the Steve Chase Band and the presentation of the George Long Awards – named for the City’s first appointed mayor in 1924.
According to Co-chairs and Rotary Club Downtown Boca Raton Members Constance Scott and Kim Champion and Honorary Chair Former Boca Raton Mayor Susan Whelchel, this year’s event honors the following that have each championed the tradition of bringing indelible visionary ideas and transformation to Boca Raton.
- Bobby Campbell (Individual) – An impassioned, trailblazing captain of industry and philanthropy, Bobby Campbell has made an indelible imprint on the international footwear industry and his own hometown community of Boca Raton. As an entrepreneurial founder, owner and Chairman of BBC International (since 1975) he has led the company into becoming one of the leading children’s and athletic footwear design and sourcing companies in the world. Since beginning his industry career at age 16 in the stock room of a Kinney Shoe Store subsequently moving up to store manager and then buyer for the brand itself, Campbell has spent more than 60 years successfully innovating footwear design and merchandising while simultaneously “giving back” ‘round the world and to those who call Boca Raton home. BBC’s Heely’s brand is now sold in more than 70 countries, and at all levels of retail sales from footwear chains, athletic and outdoor shops, sporting goods retailers, toy stores, small independent retailers and department stores to online at Nordstrom.com and Zappos.com. For his global business leadership and achievements, Campbell was elected into the Footwear Industry Hall of Fame in 2003, and this year received an Honorary Doctorate (Ph.D.) degree from the FAU College of Business.Leading with a big heart, Campbell has been generous philanthropist, supporting capital campaigns, making endowed legacy gifts, donating to educational and children’s missions and underwriting health and wellness organizations. Most recently, he and his wife Barbara donated $5 million for the building of the 12,000-square-foot Bobby and Barbara Campbell Academic Success Center that will be the cornerstone of Schmidt Family Complex for Academics and Athletic Excellence at FAU. Campbell serves on the boards of Boca Raton Regional Hospital Foundation, The ARC of Palm Beach County and Boca Raton Historical Society, the American Red Cross of Palm Beach County and Little Flower Children and Family Services and supports the Louis and Anne Green Memory & Wellness Center thorough its Annual Memories Alive Walk. Florence Fuller Child Development Centers presented him with its coveted “2013 Biggest Heart” Award at its annual Men With Caring Hearts Luncheon.
- Florida Atlantic University (Nonprofit) – Florida Atlantic University, established in 1961, officially opened its doors in 1964 as the fifth public university in Florida. Today, the University, with an annual economic impact of $6.3 billion, serves more than 30,000 undergraduate and graduate students with 1,000 faculty members at sites throughout its six-county service region in southeast Florida. The university’s student body, which ranks as the most ethnically and culturally diverse in Florida’s State University System, includes many men and women of nontraditional age.Long known as an outstanding teaching institution, FAU is undergoing rapid development as a leader in entrepreneurship education and as a center of cutting-edge research, particularly in the biomedical arena. The research focus has been accelerated by the university’s partnerships with three internationally known biomedical research organizations: the Max Planck Society, the Scripps Research Institute and the Torrey Pines Institute for Molecular Studies. Additionally, the university is building a regional entrepreneurial ecosystem that includes the Adams Center for Entrepreneurship, where students begin integrating their ideas with learned business skill sets while engaging in the business community; and Tech Runway, which provides work space, mentoring, support services and access to venture funding for startup companies. FAU’s College of Business offers an undergraduate degree in management with a focus on leadership or entrepreneurship, and a Ph.D. concentration in management, with the option to specialize in entrepreneurship. FAU is home to Palm Beach County’s only medical school, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine now welcoming its seventh incoming class this fall.
- Kaufman Lynn Construction (KL) – Since 1989 Kaufman Lynn Construction has built exceptionally high quality buildings and long-lasting client relationships throughout South Florida as a full-service commercial construction company, headquartered in Boca Raton with offices in Southeast and Southwest Florida, North Carolina and Texas. The company has nearly three decades of extensive experience in the following market sectors: Education (K-12 and University), Healthcare, Government/Municipal, Multifamily Housing, Country Clubs, Retail/Office, Cultural, Automotive, Public Safety, Self Storage, Recreation and Faith Based/Non-Profit. It consistently ranks as one of the Top General Contractors in Florida and are among the 400 largest contractors nationwide.
Because philanthropy and community involvement are part its company culture, KL actively supports a diverse array of nonprofit organizations in the Boca Raton community and beyond with both time and financial resources. Company leadership and employees are strongly encouraged to become personally engaged in their communities by volunteering to coach, mentor, fundraise or serve on a nonprofit board.
“Following two sold-out years, we are pleased to move our Rotary Club’s Mayors Ball to the Boca Raton Resort & Club, our 2016 George Long Awardee (Business Category), so that we can accommodate more attendees and sponsors,” noted 2017 Mayors Ball Co-Chair Constance Scott.
Ball Co-chair Kim Champion reports that funds raised each year through the annual Boca Raton Mayors Ball will fulfill grant requests approved through the Rotary Club Downtown Boca’s annual formal grant application program to be unveiled in October that will be open to all Boca Raton-based nonprofits with needs for health and wellness services and programming. Proceeds from the 2016 Mayors Ball (which won the Bernays Award for the for PR Excellence as Best Special Event) benefited 22 Boca Raton-based nonprofits and Rotary International’s Polio Plus Program to help globally eradicate polio and other diseases.
Former Boca Raton Mayor Susan Whelchel serves as honorary chair. Honorary advisors include current Mayor Susan Haynie and former mayors Steven Abrams, who currently serves as a Palm Beach County Commissioner and Bill T. Smith; Boca Raton City Council Member and Deputy Mayor Jeremy Rodgers; Boca Raton City Council Member and CRA Chair Scott Singer; Boca Raton Council Member and CRA Vice Chair Andrea O’Rourke and Boca Raton City Council Member and Former Deputy Mayor Robert Weinroth.
Mayors Ball committee members include 2017 Ball Co-chairs Kim Champion and Constance Scott along with Rotarians Carole Boucard, Samir Changela, Lewis Fogel, Marleen Forkas, Dave Freudenberg, Deborah Freudenberg, Ingrid Fulmer, Dr. Ira Gelb, Bonnie Halperin, Gwen Herb, Arlene Herson, Bob Hildreth, Shaheer Hosh, Rick Howard, Alan Kaye, Jon Kaye, Beverly Kennedy, Dyana Kenney, Dr. Allen Konis, Michelle Mclean-Baily, Penny Morey, Kari Oeltjen, Linda Petrakis, Dr. Ron Rubin, Shaji Varghese, Gloria Wank, Michael Walstrom, Terri Wescott, Jonathan Whitney, Abraham Wien, Janice Williams, Jo Anne Williams and Marilyn Wilson.
Ball Sponsorships Taking Flight
Sponsorship opportunities are available at various levels from presenting, title and customized sponsorships to VIP table hosts. To date, sponsors include Boca Raton Airport, Boca Raton
Resort & Club, Bobby and Barbara Campbell, Dalsimer Atlas Floral, FP&L, GrayRobinson Attorneys At Law; Investments Limited; Boca Raton Airport, JM Lexus, Kaye Communications, Modernizing Medicine, Plum Productions, Inc., Sandler Sales Training, Sklar Furnishings, Stanley Steemer and Whelchel Partners.
“The Mayors Ball is an annual beacon of City pride,” said Rotary Club Downtown Boca Raton President Penny Morey. “Our new venue this year will boast an extended dance floor that is expected, as in its annual tradition, to be filled throughout the night. The best part of the evening is seeing personal and professional reconnections made and relationships renewed and strengthened as together we celebrate ‘Boca at its best’.”
About Rotary Club Downtown Boca Raton: Presented Rotary International’s 2017 Distinguished Achievement Award following recognition as the District’s 2014-2015 “Rotary Club of the Year”, Rotary Club Downtown Boca Raton is dedicated to impacting the Boca Raton community through Rotary International’s mission of “Service Above Self”. The 501(c)3 nonprofit’s purpose is to make a difference in its community by enhancing the lives of many in an environment embraces and promotes integrity, friendship, camaraderie and trust. While the Mayor’s Ball funds the Club’s grant program, the Club also presents the “Annual Honor Your Doctor Luncheon” founded by Helen M. Babione that for 19 years recognizes physician leadership and excellence in healthcare while raising scholarship monies for nursing students at FAU, Lynn University and Palm Beach State College and medical students at FAU. The RCDBR is one of Rotary International’s 35,000 clubs in more than 200 countries that connect 1.5 million Rotarians with diverse cross-sections of thought and action leaders and stakeholders, link diverse perspectives and build lasting relationships to take action in communities at home and around the globe.