[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he Women’s Fund Miami-Dade’s signature 2015 Power of the Purse Luncheon and Auction held Friday, Mar. 13, at the Hilton Miami Downtown, raised over $425,000 for the women and girls served in Miami-Dade County.
Businesswoman, fashion icon and emcee Elle Macpherson led a lively and emotional program showcasing the work of the 22- year-old organization to a sold out audience of 1,000 South Florida leaders, philanthropists and government officials.
Luncheon co-chairs Victoria Cummock and Tiffany Zientz Heckler, Honor Roll chair Marj Adler and returning auction chair and board member Cyndi Hibnick, along with a spectacular luncheon committee, celebrated the power of women and girls to create change in the community.
“I was delighted to see partners like Macy’s, Baptist Health South Florida, LSN Partners, Duty Free Americas and so many other companies and individuals support and share our vision of a community where all women and girls have equal access and opportunity. That is the kind of Miami-Dade I am proud to call home,” Heckler said.
Marilynn Gladstone, founder of The Women’s Fund, presented the inaugural Marilynn Gladstone Achievement Award to Ruth Shack for her visionary leadership in civic, political, and philanthropic work for the entire Miami community.
In addition, community leaders Lisa Schejola Akin, Saliha Nelson and Anne Helliwell were inducted into the annual Honor Roll for their important work in The Women’s Funds’ effort to empower women and girls.
“I feel so proud to support an organization that continues to advocate for the rights of women and girls and honors women who are changing the face of our community. There is much work ahead and these leaders move us forward,” Cummock said.
“It is humbling to be part of this journey, which began in 1993 with a group of women who saw a need to help women and girls in our community. Like the personal stories our cochair Victoria Cummock and LEAP participant Lori Collins shared at the luncheon, we are all vulnerable to life’s unexpected challenges,” said Marilyn March, executive director. “The Women’s Fund is here to help women and girls face these challenges and come out stronger.”
Victoria’s and Lori’s inspirational testimonials received a standing ovation from the sellout audience. The Women’s Fund has funded the Ladies Empowerment and Action Program (LEAP), an in-prison re-entry and post-release program designed to self employ and employ ex-offenders, since its inception in 2010.
For more information about The Women’s Fund Miami-Dade, visit www.womensfundmiami.org or call 305-441-0506.