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2015 Distinguished Champion Honorees Karen Falk, T

Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas (BGCD) hosted the 2nd Annual Great Futures Luncheon at the Omni Dallas Hotel on November 3, 2015.  The luncheon, Chaired by Barbara and Gerald Louviere, formally announced the expanded Career Ready program and honored Karen and Tom Falk with the inaugural Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas Distinguished Champion Award. The James Madison High School Choir kicked off the event by singing the National Anthem and award-winning journalist Soledad O’Brien delivered the keynote address.  

Dedicated BGCD supporters, Tom and Karen Falk, were honored with the 2015 BGCD Distinguished Champion Award. This award acknowledges individuals who have devoted their time and effort in servant leadership. Their support has helped BGCD envision the future and enable pathways of success for BGCD members through their work in Collegiate STEPS and other programs. Their long history of exceptional generosity exemplifies the true nature of what it means to be a BGCD champion. 

Keynote speaker Soledad O’Brien spoke to attendees about the state of education and how it pertains to academic and career development among youth in underprivileged communities. Mrs. O’Brien shares BGCD’s passion for enabling these youth with access to high-quality education.  Along with her husband, she founded Starfish Foundation with the mission of supporting scholars to achieve their full potential by providing financial assistance and mentoring to ensure a successful scholastic journey through college.  

Charles English, BGCD President & CEO, explained how BGCD is working to prepare members for careers after graduation.  Career Ready is among many of BGCD’s outcome-driven afterschool education programs for Dallas youth located in underserved communities.  This innovative program is designed to encourage students to graduate from high school by engaging those who elect to enter the workforce upon graduation and helping them to become successfully employed in technical careers. 

Oak Cliff Boys & Girls Club member, Cameron Butler, was introduced to guests in a moving video highlighting his Boys & Girls Club tenure.  Cameron is a senior at South Oak Cliff High School and is in the top 8% of his class.  He has been a member of BGCD since the age of six.  Cameron has accumulated over 250 hours of community service at the Club and is a true embodiment of the Boys & Girls Club movement. 


Visionaries-$10,000 - Kimberly-Clark Corporation; Mike Myers Foundation; PwC 

Role Models- $5,000 - Exxon Mobil Corporation; Fuel Rewards; Hitachi Consulting; NBC 5; Westcott Foundation 

Mentors-$2,500 - Andrews & Barth, PC; Bank of Texas, Inc.; Boyd, Shackelford & Barnett; Comerica; Gensler; Holt Lunsford Commercial; Independent Bank; Jackson-Shaw; Mentors of Collegiate STEPS; The Northern Trust Company; PlainsCapital Bank; Regions Bank; Republic Title of Texas, Inc.;Wilemia Shaw; Texas Capital Bank; Day and George Watson; Wright Ginsberg & Brusilow P.C.

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Richardson BGC ribbon cutting 10 29 13 for Chamber

The Richardson Boys & Girls Club Advisory Council recently joined the Richardson Chamber of Commerce.  Richardson Mayor Laura Gibbs Maczka joined Club supporters and staff for an official ribbon cutting ceremony.  Pictured from left to right:  Wanda Nimer, VP Programs & Operations for Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas; Ken Bell, Richardson Boys & Girls Club Advisory Council Chair; Charles English, President & CEO for Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas; Richardson Mayor, Laura Gibbs Maczka; Bob Nelson, Richardson Boys & Girls Club Advisory Council Member; Monalisa Amidar, The University of Texas at Dallas, Richardson Boys & Girls Club Advisory Council Member; Paul Voelker, Richardson City Council Member; and George Human, Richardson Boys & Girls Club Advisory Council Member.

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Embedded within the mission of Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas are the words "to enable all young people, especially those that need us most to become productive, caring and responsible citizens".  On Friday, June 28th, the East Dallas Boys & Girls Club Keystone Club members had the opportunity to demonstrate this mission by collecting over 40 new bikes to give to the young members of the Hood County Boys & Girls Club. As you will recall, Hood County experienced a major tornado weeks earlier that destroyed many of the residents' homes belonging to Club members. Carly Jordan, President of the East Dallas Keystone Club said, "It was one of the most rewarding feelings I had ever experienced. Along with this being a community service project, to see the joy and excitement of these kids receiving new bikes will be forever remembered." 

Each year, local Keystone Clubs are required to raise half of their budget to attend the National Keystone Conference. Our Keystoners felt the needs of these kids were more important at this time and they will work on other fundraising ideas. Keystone members had originally planned to use the bikes as a fundraiser by selling raffle tickets.  However, when they heard about the devastation in Hood County, they elected to give the bikes to the Hood County Boys & Girls Club.  The sacrifice BGCD Keystoners were willing to make created opportunity to help other kids who needed them the most.  

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Leadership Dallas Class of 2013

Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas is proud to be the recipient of the Leadership Dallas Class of 2013 Project!  Leadership Dallas is a leadership development program aimed at providing the region with an ongoing source of diverse leaders who are prepared and committed to serve as catalysts and sustainers of positive change for the quality of life in the local community.

The class of 2013 includes more than 50 leaders committed to addressing and improving social and community issues. As part of the ten-month educational program, each class member was required to submit a project idea (in conjunction with a local nonprofit) that the class would work on during our year long program. The class of 2013 chose to create a reading advancement center for the Oak Cliff Boys & Girls Club and raised more than $120,000 in cash and in kind donations in support of the center.


The Leadership Dallas Reading Advancement Center presented by Mary Kay is a state-of-the-art facility and includes: 

  • A computer evaluated reading assessment to determine current reading level and compare it to the actual reading level the student should be at
  • A teacher to help students with the use of computers, touch screen devices and to facilitate volunteers in the reading center
  • Monitoring and tracking software to track improvement of each students performance vs. the  goal of getting to their appropriate reading level or beyond
  • The Center is a place for kids to learn to read and to get up to their appropriate level of reading; it really serves as a friendly, comfortable environment where parents and volunteers read to kids
  • The Center aligns with DISD and the reading objectives of its 20/20 program, where every student in DISD is reading at their grade level

"As part of the Dallas Regional Chamber's Leadership Dallas program, the class of 2013 selected to establish a Reading Advancement Center at the Oak Cliff Boys & Girls Club. We chose this project and this specific location in Oak Cliff because the research shows that if a student can't read by the 3rd grade, then they are more likely to drop out, cause trouble in school and lack the skills necessary to be a productive citizen in our community. In my view, to find a way to engage the students and provide them with a foundation for reading skills, can ultimately change the direction of their life. Leadership Dallas is committed to making an impact in our community and we are so pleased to have opened this Center to help local students set the foundation for future success. As a board member of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas, I am so proud that my classmates and I were able to accomplish this project. It truly was a tremendous team effort." 

- Vickie Yakunin, BGCD Board Member | Leadership Dallas Class of 2013 Participant | Community Investment Director, Time Warner Cable

Leadership Dallas Class of 2013

Jamil Alibhai | John Ansbach | Sandy Beach Lin | Thad Behrens | Vanessa Benavides

Mike Birrer | Nicole Blythe | Kyle Cardwell | Mary Cochran | Todd Cornelius | Carol Donovan

Stephanie Fox | Ashley Givens | Forrest Gregg | Ashley Givens | Mike Goldman | Jamie Griffin

Jason Hammons | Teri Harper | Ken Hirsch | Sara Hollan | Marissa Horne | Kirk Johnson

Laura Johnson | Scotty Landry | Andy Leatherman | Sara Madsen Miller | Alissa  Martine

Jay McAuley | Casey Miller | Jerry Miller | Eleanor Millwood | Matthew Neyland | Rick Ortiz

Jeffrey Parkhill | Hattie Peterson | Ana Rodriguez | Benaye Rogers | Jennifer Ryan

Byron Sanders | Travis Sartain | Troy Schiermeyer | Peter Sefzik | Scott Siemer

 Craig Simon | Sanderia Smith | Andrew (Drew) Spaniol | Edward Spooner | Anita Tarar

Brian Vanderwoude | Nancy Wolff | James Wright | Vickie Yakunin


Reading Advancement Center Donors


$15,000 - $30,000

General Datatech, L.P. * | Mary Kay Inc.

$5,000 - $7,500

Anonymous | Atmos Energy | Plano Office Supply * | Tripp & Sadie Schiermeyer

$3,000 - $4,999

Fabulous Floors * | Half Price Books * | Morley-Moss Incorporated * 

Time Warner Cable * | Voyager Learning *

$2,500 - $2,999

Allie Beth Allman & Associates | Bank of Texas | Citibank

Comerica Bank | GMi * | Haynes and Boone, LLP | IBM Corporation | PwC

$1,000 - $1,999

Jackson Walker L.L.P. | James & Margaret Wright | Jennifer & Jay McAuley

Julia & Ken Hirsch | Methodist Health System | Munck Wilson Mandala, LLP

Prudential Financial, Inc. | Sam's Club #8299

Corgan Associates | Tenet Healthcare Corporation

 $500 - $999

American Heart Association, Greater Dallas Division | Bridget & Michael Goldman

Bryan Cave LLP and Drew Spaniol | Carol Crabtree Donovan, PC | Carrington Coleman LLP

Chris & Mary Cochran | Jason & Angela Hammons | Jerry & Tina Miller 

Leadership Dallas Class of 2013 Raffle | MHBT/ Travis L. Sartain | Mike Birrer

Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers | Shelli and Scott Siemer | Simon, Ray & Winikka LLP

Texas Health Resources | The Jeff and Karen Parkhill Charitable Fund

The Lin Family | Todd & Elizabeth Cornelius | Winstead PC


* In kind donors


Register Today for Summer Academic Camp at Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas! Contact (214) 821-2950 for more information!





Please be warned that a scam artist is requesting donations on behalf of Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas. He is not affiliated with BGCD, and BGCD does not solicit donations door-to-door. A Good Samaritan provided this video of the alleged scam artist. Contact Carolyn Jordan at (214) 821-2950 if you are contacted by anyone at your home or business requesting donations for BGCD or if you have information on the individual in the video. You may also contact your local police department.


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The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas have launched a special effort this summer to help students retain their classroom learning.

Project Learn, a summer BGCD Club program aimed at complementing the academic school year curricula in Dallas area schools, is focused on “learning loss prevention.” The program provides fun, high-yield learning activities to Dallas area youth who need it most.

“All students experience learning losses when they do not engage in educational activities during the summer,” said Ron Fairchild, Executive Director of the Johns Hopkins University Center for Summer Learning.

“On average, students lose approximately 2.6 months of grade level equivalency in mathematical computation skills during the summer months,” he said. “Low-income youth experience greater summer learning losses than their higher income peers.”

Research shows that teachers typically spend between 4 to 6 weeks re-teaching material that students have forgotten over the summer.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas (BGCD) seeks to help children—particularly those from low-income homes—to become productive, caring and responsible citizens.

The Project Learn programs include Career Launch, Money Matters and Goals for Graduation. For information on all of BGCD’s programs, visit or call (214) 821-2950.