The Women of Tomorrow Mentor & Scholarship Program hosted its 13th Annual Gala at beautiful Mandarin Oriental Hotel, with more than 500 local philanthropists, celebrities and influencers from across South Florida in attendance. Founders Jennifer Valoppi and Don Browne, along with Gala Chair Marisa Toccin and Co-Vice President, Honorable Katherine Fernandez Rundle, celebrated 17 years of mentoring at-risk young girls in the South Florida community.
The event started with a cocktail reception, featuring lavish hors d’oeuvre stations prepared by Mandarin Oriental’s executive chef, along with a silent auction featuring hundreds of items ranging from top luxury retail and hospitality brands, sports paraphernalia, art pieces like James Rosenquist “The Hole in the Wallpapper: Be Beautiful” with estimated value of $200K, or The Collection 2014 Maserati Ghibli 36 month pre-paid car lease with retail value over $45K. After the cocktail reception, guests were escorted into the grand ballroom for a four-course dinner and the musical talents of South Florida’s own Soul Survivors. The evening master of ceremonies were Jose Diaz Balart, News Anchor of Telemundo Network News and Trina Robinson, News Anchor of NBC 6.
Wayne and Cynthia Boich, were this years Honorary Chairs, and the remaining list of honorees includes Bruce and Tracey Berkowitz of The Fairholme Foundation, as Legacy Builder Honorees, Edie Lutnick as Leadership AwardÂ Honoree, Miami HEAT as Champion Award Honoree, Tara Solomon and Nick D’Annunzio of Tara Ink. as Excellence Honorees, while Robbin Newman was honored as Mentor of the Year.
Women of Tomorrow was founded in 1997 by TV Journalist & Author Jennifer Valoppi and co-founded with Don Browne, retired Telemundo Network President. The Women of Tomorrow Mentor & Scholarship Program is designed to inspire, motivate and empower at-risk young women to live up to their full potential through a unique mentoring program with highly accomplished professional women and scholarship opportunities. Women of Tomorrow currently mentors 3,000 at-risk girls in 130 public high schools in approximately 50 cities in South Florida and Metropolitan Detroit with its network of 300 Mentors. Research shows that Women of Tomorrow Mentees have increased self-esteem, a 93% high school graduation rate, and increased academic performance each year they are in the program, to a statistically significant degree. Women of Tomorrow has awarded over $3.4 million in college scholarships to nearly 1,300 mentees.
Pictures by: Inamara Bellina