Major Portion of Gala Proceeds Will Endow Scholarships
Scholarships key to Gala organizers
A great deal of the more than $500,000 raised during Alabama A&M University's sold out 19th Annual Black Tie Scholarship Gala has been allotted to endow scholarships for perpetuity, says a key fundraising official. The remaining portion will fund current use scholarships.
According to Dr. Archie Tucker II, vice president for marketing, communication and advancement, $300,000 of the $538,000 raised will be added to endowment coffers to provide future scholarships, while the remainder will be put to use to address present needs by students for financial assistance.
"This was a record-setting fundraising gala for us," commented Dr. Tucker. "The more than $538,000 raised this year more than doubled our totals from the previous year." Some of the increase could be attributable to the R&B artist K-Ci, formerly of the group Jodeci, who helped to pull in an added demographic.
Tucker said that the upcoming 2020 year will bring about the celebration of the Gala's 20th anniversary in the visionary year of 2020.
"We will be thinking out of the box to ensure that we take the event to the next level while still raising a substantial amount for the scholarship fund.
The Gala also served as the backdrop for the University's recognition of key supporters of its mission. For significant contributuions by the faith community, AAMU presented the Koinonia Award to Rev. Dr. Julius R. Scruggs, pastor emeritus of First Missionary Baptist Church of Huntsville. The national advocacy publication HBCU Digest, represented by Jarrett Carter, received the Diversity Award. Other honors included the Small Organization Award (National Space Club-Huntsville); Large Organization (City of Birmingham); and Advocate of the Year (John M. and Mildred V. Davis).
Also recognized were sponsors contributing levels designated as Torchbearer (Dr. Ernest L. Knight; Winchester Place Apartments/Microsoft); Platinum (Aramark Physical Facilities; First Missionary Baptist Church and Regions Bank) and Gold (Aerojet Rocketdyne; Jacquelyne Bennett; Maynard, Cooper & Gale, P.C.; Parker Waller Insurance; St. Luke Christian Church; Sirote & Permutt, P.C.; Turner Construction Company; and Valent Group. Organizers also acknowledged some 60 contributors at the Silver and Bronze levels.