Boston GLOW Shines Once Again - March 14 2013
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Boston GLOW Shines Once Again
Local Grassroots Nonprofit Raises $50,000 in Scholarship Funds
at Third Annual IGNITE the NITE
March 14, 2013 – BOSTON, MA: On February 28, 2013, Boston GLOW, a local grassroots nonprofit aimed at empowering and educating women leaders of all ages, hosted their third annual IGNITE the NITE Fundraiser at the Artists for Humanity EpiCenter in Boston. The event drew 300 guests and raised over $50,000 for the finalists of the IGNITE Change Leadership Contest, an essay-based competition for high-school aged women in Boston's most under-resourced schools in its most at-risk communities in Roxbury, Dorchester, Somerville and Cambridge.
“We asked entrants to put forth an actionable plan for change in the role of women within their school or city,” explained AC Gaughen, GLOW’s Girl Leadership Director. “We chose ten finalists based on both their idea and their proposed implementation. All finalists will receive tablet computers, educational scholarships and participate in a year-long leadership and educational development curriculum through Boston GLOW. One grand prize winner will also receive $1,000 to make her plan a reality with the support of our Organized Women network.”
Just entering their fourth year, Boston GLOW is entirely volunteer-run, yet this grassroots group has made an inarguable impact on the community. “In the past two years our finalists have included three former high school drop-outs all of whom have received their diplomas or GEDs, five young women ESL immigrants, and two teenage mothers who have both continued on to higher education and vocational training through the support of Boston GLOW, explains Founder and President Leah Moschella. “We work with students year-round to support them academically, emotionally and financially.”
Rising political star and City Councilor Ayanna Pressley gave a keynote speech, interviewing Zacorah Jackman, a 2012 IGNITE Change Finalist and endorsing the work of Boston GLOW. Pressley also shared with the audience the news of her partnership with the organization. “I was first introduced to the incredible women and work of GLOW one year ago," said Pressley, “I attended IGNITE the NITE last year and am thrilled to join them again this year, and excited to officially announce my community service collaboration with GLOW". The collaboration will begin with a city-wide prom dress drive in the spring.
Second year corporate sponsor Hill Holliday, Boston's largest advertising firm, was joined by national and local sponsors ranging from Bethesda-based Meridian Investments to local small businesses like New England Country Rentals and Party by Design who offered event decor to premiere Boston caterers Season to Taste, Rita’s, Broadway Gourmet and Cuisine Chez Vous who donated small plates. Floral design came from Cedar Grove Gardens and Tangerine Creations, drinks from Tito’s Vodka, Bantam Cider, Harpoon, Gordon’s Liquors and The Catered Affair. Boston-based rock band City of Squares played to a loyal crowd for their third year at IGNITE the NITE and later on, Nora Jordan of DJour Entertainment took to the turn tables and ushered in a memorable dance party.
“Again this year we had overwhelming support from the community,” explained Emily Copeman, GLOW development director. “We had forty volunteers planning the event and over 100 community donors. We couldn't have created an experience that reflected the colorful spirit of Boson GLOW without the individuals and businesses who generously donated their time, labor and product because they believe in our mission.”
The event’s silent auction was a focal point with over sixty packages ranging from hot air balloon rides and sailing lessons in the British Virgin Islands to a tour of Good Morning America with Robin Roberts. Hotel stays, original artwork, career coaching, dining and shopping experiences also drew major donations to Boston GLOW’s cause.
“It’s really incredible to reflect on how far we have come in four years,” remarked Jenna Paone, Director of Organized Women programming. “Just three years ago we were hosting a tiny event for our parents and friends in a photo studio, now we are raising tens of thousands of dollars and have a network that is expanding by the day. It’s been an incredible journey – and this is still only the beginning for us.”
To view photos of IGNITE the NITE, please visit http://www.facebook.com/bostonglow/photos_stream
About Boston GLOW
Boston GLOW is a local nonprofit that strives to empower women. Founded in 2010 by East Boston resident Leah Moschella, Boston GLOW fosters opportunities for women of all ages to become empowered community leaders and active world citizens. Through two specific
program areas--Girls’ Leadership (GL) and Organized Women (OW)--GLOW strives to provide pragmatic programming, leadership training, and service-learning opportunities.
About Ayanna Pressley
Ayanna Pressley was elected to the Boston City Council on November 3, 2009. Pressley, the only woman in a field of 15 candidates, earned one of four At-Large spots on the city’s 13-member council with nearly 42,000 votes. After being sworn in on January 4, 2010 she became the first woman of color to serve in the 100-year history of the Boston City Council.
In keeping with the historic nature of her win, Councilor Pressley formed and is chairing a new standing committee, the Committee on Women & Healthy Communities. The committee is devoted to the causes that she has always been most devoted to: stabilizing families and communities, reducing and preventing violence and trauma, and combating poverty. The committee is primarily concerned with adequate delivery of city services and programming for youth, families, seniors and new Bostonians, with particular focus on girls and women. Some of the issues the committee plans to address over the next two years include domestic and sexual violence, child abuse and neglect, bullying, substance abuse, mentoring, hunger and homelessness.
Councilor Pressley also serves as the Chair of the Arts, Film, Humanities & Tourism Committee as well as the Vice Chair of the Public Safety Committee. She also sits on the following committees: City, Neighborhood Services & Veterans Affairs; Economic Development & Planning; Education; Government Operations; Ways and Means, and; the Special Committee on Census & Redistricting.
Although newly elected, Councilor Pressley is no stranger to public service. Her political career spans more than 16 years, in various behind-the-scene capacities at the federal level of government. Councilor Pressley previously worked as a Senior Aide for Congressman Joseph P. Kennedy II and United States Senator John Kerry. Immediately prior to her run for office, Pressley was serving as Senator Kerry’s Political Director, responsible for managing his relationships with elected officials at the city, state and federal level and various community leaders.
In addition to her work in government, Councilor Pressley has also been an active leader in the non-profit community on issues related to women and girls, civic engagement and diversifying the political pipeline. She has served in leadership positions with groups such as the Massachusetts Women's Political Caucus, the Young Professionals Preventing Child Abuse of the Children's Trust Fund. She also serves on the Boards of several Boston and statewide organizations, including the UMass Boston Center for Women in Politics and Public Policy, Emerge Massachusetts, Action for Boston Community Development, Inc., and the Young Black
Women's Society. In addition, she is an active “Big Sister” with the Big Sister Association of Greater Boston. Her work with young people on violence prevention has earned her national acclaim and she has been recognized by Ebony Magazine, The Root, the Boston Globe, NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts, Big Sisters of Greater Boston and others as an emerging leader with vision and values.
Councilor Pressley is passionate about youth mentorship and civic engagement and has launched ABC- Ayanna’s BIG Challenge- a yearlong initiative to recruit mentors for children living in the Boston neighborhoods with the longest waiting lists for adult mentors. She is a resident and homeowner in the Ashmont-Adams area of Dorchester, Boston’s largest neighborhood.