Pillars of Change: Celebrating Sanctuary's Volunteers
Every year, Sanctuary for Families honors volunteers who have demonstrated exceptional service. Volunteers are essential to Sanctuary's ability to provide high-quality, personalized care to victims of domestic violence and sex trafficking.
Tuesday, April 30th, 2013
The Atrium at Hogan Lovells LLP
875 Third Avenue, 25th Floor (Map)
Sanctuary is so grateful to the thousands of volunteers who support the organization and those who seek our help by generously providing their skills, dedication and resources.
Terry Kobel was born and raised in Queens, and has loved living in Manhattan for the past 35 years. She is a huge opera fan, having attended performances at the Met for over 25 years as well as traveling around the world to hear her favorite opera singers. Terry worked as an Administrator in the Accounting Department of Davis Polk & Wardwell for almost 29 years before retiring in August 2011. Terry was a founding member of Sanctuary’s Career Advancement Network, and an active member of the Legal Advisory Council, where she is on the planning committee for the annual Abely Awards. She also organized communication workshops for small groups of clients participating in Sanctuary's workforce development initiative, and has been a constant volunteer at Zero Tolerance and other special events and mailings.
Christine Scott began working at Deloitte, one of Sanctuary’s corporate partners, in November 2000 after more than 20 years in the retail industry. She joined the Community Involvement team as part of Deloitte’s Women’s Initiative in 2006, and became a co-leader in 2009. Christine was instrumental in beginning Deloitte’s partnership with Sanctuary’s Economic Empowerment Program in 2010. She recruited volunteers to help teach a new data processing software to Sanctuary clients enrolled in the Office Operations Workshop, and volunteered much of her own time to help with the program. Christine is also a familiar face at Sanctuary’s various special events and mailings.
Jonathan So was born in Brooklyn and grew up in College Point. He received his J.D. from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law in 2011. In January 2012, Jonathan was awarded a Post-Grad Public Service Fellowship from Cardozo and began working at Sanctuary for Families. Since the fellowship ended in April 2012, he has been volunteering five days a week at Sanctuary providing free legal representation to victims of domestic violence in Family Law proceedings. On any given day, he can be found doing legal research, counseling clients about their cases, drafting legal documents, making court appearances or negotiating with opposing counsel. He is also an avid fan of the Green Bay Packers.
Lisa Vargas was born and raised in the Bronx, where she still resides. She and her husband have two sons and a Shih Tzu named Max. She began volunteering at Sanctuary for Families in May 2010. Since then, she has tutored numerous Sanctuary clients in computer skills and ESL. Lisa has also been one of Sanctuary’s most consistent Spanish document translators for the past few years. She also coordinates her workplace’s annual Denim Day, giving the proceeds to Sanctuary. Lisa says of the women she’s tutored, “They impact me in a way that cannot be measured and I am in awe of these strong, amazing mothers, daughters and sisters.”
Arielle Kauvar is receiving this year's Virtual Volunteer Award. She is the founding director of New York Laser & Skin Care and Clinical Professor of Dermatology at New York University School of Medicine. As a leading authority on laser surgery, cosmetic dermatology and skin cancer, she lectures nationally and internationally, writes extensively and is frequently interviewed by media. Dr. Kauvar is a native New Yorker, and loves traveling, hiking and cooking with her husband and three sons. She has generously volunteered her professional expertise, providing pro bono laser treatments on one of Sanctuary's clients to remove a tattoo of her trafficker's name. Over the past year, Dr. Kauvar has performed several treatments, with many more to come in the next year.
A special thanks to this year's volunteer planning committee for their invaluable help with the planning and execution of Pillars of Change.
The members are: Monet Cruz, Mark Karatoprak, Danielle Mercurio, Katie Petersen and Nadine Widener.
An additional thanks to Nancy Merriman at Hogan Lovells LLP, Vivian Chen, Billy Dume, Alexandra Leib, Catherine L. Woodman at Sharp Hill Designs, Sodexo Dining Services, Sullivan Street Bakery, and Ellen Weldon at Ellen Weldon Design.
2012 Volunteer Honorees:
Mary Block: for her devotion to tutoring the same child at Sanctuary for over two years, while also volunteering with miscellaneous tasks at our transitional shelter and helping with mailings and special events.
Jennifer Chaitman: for 'fostering' pets of Sanctuary clients in order to bring peace to their families as they make changes to their living situations, and for her active participation in the Mothers Council.
Frances Kazan: for her dedication to Sarah Burke House through consistent volunteer support in the childcare program, generous in-kind donations, and consistently helping with various special projects at both SBH and the Manhattan Office.
Ellen Weldon:Virtual Volunteer Award - for her years of pro bono service creating hand-lettered certificates for the Abely Awards and Pillars of Change, and hosting "The Big Write" annually at her studio to raise funds for Sanctuary.
2011 Volunteer Honorees:
Fikre Deneke: for his dedication to helping Sanctuary in any way possible, from tutoring to mailings and special events to tailoring Citi's Financial Education curriculum for our clients.
Robin Kupersmith: for her years of service to Sanctuary as a paralegal on pro bono cases, as a volunteer and Benefit Committee member for Zero Tolerance, and as an integral member of the Pro Bono Council.
Joan Lawless: for supporting Sanctuary's Legal Center as a reliable administrative volunteer over three years, donating to the Adopt-a-Family program annually, and tirelessly volunteering for numerous special events and mailings.
Nancy Lazar: for her years of pro bono legal assistance through Davis, Polk & Wardwell, and her extraordinarily generous support of Sanctuary's annual holiday drive through children's gift donations.
Kate Hyde:Virtual Volunteer Award - for her years of lending graphic design support for events and agency communications, all from her home in Massachusetts.
2010 Volunteer Honorees:
Suzanne Davis: For her commitment to clients at Sarah Burke House over the last five years, teaching computer classes to women and providing one-on-one tutoring to children while also providing support to staff.
Dr. John McIvor: For leading students at the Horace Mann School to hold the annual holiday party for 250-300 Sanctuary clients each year.
Anna Harrington: For her longtime dedication, support and contributions to Sanctuary's Zero Tolerance Benefit.
Jennifer Friedland: For her support of Sanctuary's clients, helping with our annual Back to School Bash, filling client holiday wish lists, using her skills as an attorney in our Legal Center, and being an active member of the Mothers Council.
2009 Volunteer Honorees:
Gina Gibney: For the innovative dance and movement workshops that the Gina Gibney Dance Company has run for the women and children served by Sanctuary.
Angela Karides: For her dedication tutoring, serving as a volunteer children’s group leader, helping with special events, and serving on the Zero Tolerance Benefit and Dinner Committee.
Maggie Romine: For her tireless coordination of Citi’s volunteer work with Sanctuary.
MK Wong: For her long-time commitment and dedication to planning Sanctuary’s Zero Tolerance Benefit.