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Bow Ties & pearls ball

Sold out fundraiser supports legacy projects, scholarships

An elegant venue complete with “red carpet” and dance floor. A sellout crowd of 300 alumni and University friends. Delicious food, dynamic entertainment and delightful company.

These were the ingredients for Cal U’s inaugural Bow Ties & Pearls Ball, held June 29 in the Convocation Center Arena.

Thanks to generous sponsors, donors and guests, the sparkling event brought in about $100,000. Proceeds will support alumni recognition projects and student scholarships.

Emcees Andrew Stockey, of WTAE-TV, and Melanie Taylor, of STAR 100.7 FM radio, helped to welcome a quartet of
former student-athletes to Cal U’s Athletic Hall of Fame.

University President Geraldine M. Jones presented the Lillian M. Bassi Core Values Award – one of the University’s most prestigious honors – to William “Bill” Booker ’74.

The President also announced plans for a donor-funded initiative, Champions Way, to showcase artworks honoring Cal U’s national championship teams and information about Hall of Fame honorees.

After dinner, Pittsburgh Penguins broadcast personality Phil Bourque noted that “there’s just something special about this school” as he encouraged bidders to vie for prizes in a silent auction. Guests enjoyed a buffet of tempting desserts, casino games and dancing as the evening came to a close.

“We had a wonderful mix of old friends and new faces,” says Tony Mauro ’92, ’93, vice president for University Development and Alumni Relations. “Everyone had a good time, and it felt even more special because
it was all for a good purpose.”

University President Geraldine Jones and first gentleman Jeff Jones get the dancing started.
Making the Bow Ties & Pearls Ball a family affair are (from left) Fred Smith III '12, of Arlington, Va., and his parents, Karen Smith '83 and Fred Smith Jr. '83.
Backed by a childhood photo, William 'Bill" Booker '74 accepts the Lillian M. Bassi Core Values Award, one of California University's most prestigious honors.
Enjoying the evening: Dr. Nancy Pinardi '94, '96, '98, vice president for Student Affairs, and T. David Garcia, vice president for Enrollment Management.
Guests included Cherie Sears '81, '17, director of the University's Rutledge Institute preschool program, and husband Michael Sears, superintendent of California Area School District.
Inducted into Cal U's Athletic Hall of Fame during the Bow Ties & Pearls Ball (from left): Dr. Les Bakos '68, baseball; Helena van Eysendeyk '07, '09, tennis; Kristin Heslop '02, softball; and Nate Forse '07, football.
University trustees (from left) Thomas Uram, Larry Maggi '79 and acting council chair James Davis '73 share a laugh before dinner.

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