The LaGuardia Community College Foundation held its 2010 Innovative Leadership Award Reception for two very special reasons: to honor two supporters of higher education and to raise scholarship funds for LaGuardia students.
Local business leaders, faculty, staff, students and friends of the college came together at The Lighthouse at Chelsea Piers, where founding LaGuardia Foundation directors, Lily Gavin and Tai Wang, were recognized for their work. In honoring these women, the event raised over $100,000 for student scholarships.
E. Ramone Segree, vice president for institutional advancement and the Foundation’s executive director, noted that, since its founding in 2003, the Foundation has raised $3.7 million, has awarded $1.1 million in scholarships and has provided over 2,000 scholarships as well as emergency funding, books and transportation to students.
“Thanks to you,” he said to the donors in attendance, “we’re on target to raise over $900,000 this year and award over $350,000 in scholarships.”
Before presenting Tiffany crystal Innovative Leadership Awards to the honorees, LaGuardia president Gail O. Mellow effusively praised the women.
“Lily believes that public service, political service and community service are connected. There is no difference among them for her. And Tai does her work with a blossoming heart. She radiates an infectious belief in education,” she said.
“What the LaGuardia Foundation does is get together to make a difference in another person’s life,” said Gavin.
The honorees were also showered with praise by New York City Comptroller John Liu; Borough President Helen Marshall; and former Foundation director and recently-elected New York City Councilmember Peter Koo.
John Vogt, chair of the LaGuardia Community College Foundation, expressed his gratitude to both Gavin and Wang for being models of leadership, philanthropy and innovation.
“Both women possess in abundance all the ingredients necessary to be recipients of LaGuardia’s Innovative Leadership Award,” he said.