California State University East Bay

The Pioneer

California State University East Bay

The Pioneer

California State University East Bay

The Pioneer

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Take Wings Foundation Supports Local Youth

Vaugn became emotional at seeing her recent graduates.

A combination of fine dining, an inspirational performance, heartfelt speakers and an overall good feeling of coming together for a cause made Terri J. Vaughn’s annual Take Wings benefit a success.

The 8th annual Angel Awards Benefit took place at the San Francisco Marriott last Saturday.

Vaughn founded her Take Wings Foundation in 1997 as a way of providing resources for youth growing up in high risk communities.

Through workshops, community service and other activities, Take Wings helps their members build up their self-esteem, improve their decision making skills and learn how to manage their finances.

Every year the foundation awards up to ten scholarships to help pay for their tuition, books and other school service fees.

The event opened at 6 p.m. with a reception period, that served as a relaxed social hour.

During the reception, people started to trickle in until there were well over 300 people by the time dinner was served at around 7:30 p.m.

The show was hosted by Nicole Ari Parker and actress Malinda Williams, best known for their roles on the TV drama “Soul Food.”

Due to the already established friendship between Parker and Williams, the chemistry was very natural.

R&B singer Kelly Price performs at benefit.

During dinner, Vaughn’s Angel Awards were given out to the evening’s two honorees, Warren J. Strudwick and Edward Fitzpatrick.

Strudwick specializes in injuries and diseases of the knee, elbow and shoulder. He is currently a member of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, the American College of Sports Medicine, the National Basketball Physicians Society, the National Football League Physicians Association and many other organizations.

Strudwick serves as the team physician for the Oakland Raiders and the U.S. Track and Field Team.

He also has a program aimed at assisting youth seeking to pursue careers in sports medicine.

The second honoree, Fitzpatrick, is founder and president of Fitzpatrick Dealership Group, which is the largest African-American owned dealership group in California.

He is also very dedicated to contributing to the arts, education and the community.

The hostesses of the evening brought Vaughn to the stage to speak about her 2011 graduates who are now exiting the program.

She gave an in-depth background on how the foundation aims to assist the youth in the program and provided words of encouragement for the graduating seniors to keep with them as they head down their roads to success.

Vaughn’s speech touched the hearts of many in the room, leaving some of her guests teary-eyed.

Vaughn cried tears of happiness when the graduating class took the stage, expressing how the foundation has helped them and now what college they will be attending in the fall.

After the dinner was wrapped up, the crowd was treated to the vocal sensations of R&B singer Kelly Price.

Price performed the old school hit single, “Heartbreak Hotel” as well as a few of her newer songs.

Following the spectacular performance, the event’s sponsor for the night, Hennessy, put on a culinary demonstration of the nights’ dessert as it was being served.

The featured dessert was a sweet and refreshing Hennessy and cinnamon poached pear, served with fresh fruit and Hennessy hinted whipped cream.

The benefit concluded with an auction to raise money for the students’ scholarships. Golden State Warrior Adonal Foyle topped everyone by bidding $3,300 the auction item—which was a personal dinner party for himself and ten friends.

Many of the guests also attended the after party that followed the main event.

Since the Take Wings Foundation is a non-profit organization, none of the performers were paid, allowing more money to go directly to the youth in the program.

Overall the night went well and the guests left happy and well fed.

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California State University East Bay
Take Wings Foundation Supports Local Youth