And just like that, the 19th annual GRACE Gala is officially in the books. On a night that was filled with joy, hope, and fun, this year’s Gala will forever go down in history as one of the best.
After a very successful 2021 Gala, led by co-chair Ana Erwin and Jessica Cruz, this year co-chairs Sheila and Jason Ridley had the mindset of keeping that same energy alive, and they did.
For the (blank year in a row) attendees were delighted to be back at the Fabulous Irving Convention Center to attend the communities premiere black tie event. Inside attendees were met with pre-activities, like the Selfie and Portrait walls, silent auction, wine pull and the highly anticipated Kendra Scott pull, which was sold out within a record 40 minutes.
As the ballroom doors opened, a group of children from Compass Church was holding candles while the powerful voice of Sammy Wade sang “Amazing Grace”. Sammy then shared his powerful story of how GRACE helped him overcome many obstacles in his life.
GRACE CEO Shonda Schaefer and NBC 5’s Laura Harris once again returned this year as the dynamic duo of the GRACE Gala and thanked everyone for coming out. They talked about past Gala’s and assured everyone that “this was a night you will never forget.”
Sheila and Jason Ridley came to the stage to thank everyone who helped with this year’s Gala, siting the Gala committee, GRACE Staff, and this year’s auction chair, Kay Allen, as “ some of the most hardworking individuals, you’ll ever meet.”
The Angel of GRACE award was given to BNSF. This award is a tradition that GRACE has held on to for many years and represents an individual or organization who embodies the mission of GRACE, and this year BNSF was deserving of this gracious award.
After dinner was served, everyone was ready for the live auction with Auctioneer Phillip Pierceall from Swing City Auction. The charisma of this longtime auctioneer added to the energy of the crowd and increased the bidding for the variety of packages offered this year, thanks to our generous donors.
After the auction, Shonda announced the co-chairs of the 2023 GRACE Gala, who are Madeline and David Ricci.
After a very successful and entertaining live auction and raffle, the Walton Stout band took the stage entertaining all with a variety of music that kept people on the dance floor! The celebration continued as everyone formed a conga line and danced around the dancefloor.
The 2022 GRACE Gala was truly something special and it could not have been done without each donor, committee member, and volunteer. Grace is very thankful to all that attended. We are so excited to see what 2023 has to offer and we look forward to seeing everyone back at the 20th annual GRACE Gala on November 4, 2023.
To see more pictures of the evening, visit our Gala page here!