The third annual “Join the Fight” Luncheon featuring Olympic boxing legend Sugar Ray Leonard on Feb. 12 raised an incredible $35,000 to benefit child victims of abuse in Collin County. The luncheon was proudly presented by JCPenney and emceed by WFAA’s Pete Delkus. Plano resident and longtime Center supporter Carolyn Speese served as luncheon chair.
February event featuring boxing legend Sugar Ray Leonard raises $35,000 to support safety, healing and justice for child abuse victims
PLANO, March 10, 2015 — The third annual “Join the Fight” Luncheon featuring Olympic boxing legend Sugar Ray Leonard on Feb. 12 raised an incredible $35,000 to benefit child victims of abuse in Collin County. The luncheon was proudly presented by JCPenney and emceed by WFAA’s Pete Delkus. Plano resident and longtime Center supporter Carolyn Speese served as luncheon chair.
The “Join the Fight” luncheon brings together business and community leaders to generate awareness about the Center’s mission to provide safety, healing and justice to children victimized by abuse in Collin County. More than 430 attended the most successful luncheon to date.
With support from the community, Children’s Advocacy Center of Collin County provides a child-friendly environment where children can safely tell their stories and begin healing from abuse. CACCC’s multi-disciplinary team approach encompasses all aspects of the child protection system including law enforcement, Child Protective Services, the forensic interview staff, therapists, nurse examiners and client services under one roof to minimize trauma to vulnerable child victims.
Sugar Ray Leonard is one of the legendary sports icons of the 20th century whose very name epitomizes boxing and conjures the image of a champion. Leonard’s published memoir “The Big Fight: My Life In and Out of the Ring” was released in 2011 and details his personal journey as an Olympic hero, six-time champion and beloved athlete who waged a personal battle with depression, rage, addiction and greed. With honesty, humor and hard-won perspective, Leonard comes to terms with both triumph and struggle-and presents a gripping portrait of remarkable strength, courage and resilience both in and out of the ring.
Leonard revealed for the first time upon publication of his memoir that as a young boxer he had been a victim of sexual abuse by an Olympic trainer and another man, a benefactor. Since then, he has taken up the cause of ending child sexual abuse and encouraging others to report abuse.
“Sugar Ray Leonard’s inspiring story shows us that we must speak up and speak out in order to end child abuse and give victims the chance to heal,” Event Chair Carolyn Speese said. “Just as importantly, his story serves as a reminder that every child has the greatest potential, but they have to have help in order to reach that potential.”
We gratefully acknowledge the following sponsors:
$20,000 – JCPenney
$10,000 – Carolyn and Mark Speese
$7,500 – Rent-A-Center
$5,000 – Wendy and Tom Engibous; Hiya and Dave Hoffman; Independent Bank; Torchmark; Welton USA
$1,200 – Merrill Greer; Jane and Jim Donovan; Junior League of Collin County; Norton Rose Fulbright; The Plexus Groupe; Cindy and Reed Schnittker; Sheriff Box Shoot-Out FORE Kids; Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital, Plano; U.S. Trust – Bank of America Private Wealth Management
We are also grateful to those sponsors who contributed after press deadlines.
The Children’s Advocacy Center of Collin County is a nonprofit 501 (c) 3 organization that provides safety, healing and justice to children victimized by abuse or neglect in Collin County. The Center works collaboratively with law enforcement and Child Protective Services to help children and their non-offending family members heal from the trauma of abuse. Since 1992, the Children’s Advocacy Center of Collin County has offered free services to more than 50,000 abused and neglected children. To learn more, visit caccollincounty.org or call 972-633-6600.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Katy Seitzler
Community Relations Manager