Each year, this KBI fundraising event recognizes the urgent work of the KBI and the vital role of donors, volunteers and others in keeping these programs strong.
By: Roxane Ramos
A little drizzle did nothing to dampen the enthusiasm of the 260 supporters who gathered for the Sixth Annual KBI Dinner on Saturday, February 28. As planning committee chair Lucy Howell noted, “Weather is never an obstacle. We had to hustle folks into dinner once the rain started, but the support for the KBI was, as always, exciting and inspiring.”
Mingling in the courtyard of St. Francis Xavier School in Phoenix, attendees enjoyed a pre-dinner reception of refreshments and appetizers, sponsored by Maldonado Medical. It was followed by dinner, catered by local chef Vincent Guerithault and served by Brophy College Preparatory students. With Master of Ceremonies Frank Camacho, Phoenix-based news anchor and reporter, at the helm, this year’s dinner featured silent and live auctions, raising even more funds for the KBI. When two live-auction bidders vied for a week’s stay at a waterfront town house in San Diego, complete with lunch at the yacht club and an afternoon sail on the bay, KBI board chair Jane Lacovara and her husband Dr. Phil Lacovara donated another week’s stay for the runners-up. (The sailboat ride was courtesy of Lucy and Steve Howell.)
Also auctioned that night were a chef’s choice dinner with Father Sean at Vincent, and a tour of the KBI that included a night’s stay at the Tubac Golf Resort & Spa, and a gourmet dinner prepared by Father Sean and Father Pete at the Nogales Jesuit Community. (So now we know that they can cook, too! And raise $3,000 for the KBI in the process.) The dinner and auctions raised $124, 240, with donations are still coming in. Of that total, the silent auction raised $4,000 and the live auction, $14,000.
A highlight of the evening was the presentation of the Pope Francis Award, given to Jean Wallace for her extraordinary support of the KBI’s mission. Father Sean presented Jean with a Migrant Portrait by artist Pamela Hoffmeister, who has painted a series of such portraits and is married to KBI board member Dr. Charlie Hoffmeister.
Once again the capable KBI Planning Committee arranged and hosted a marvelous event, one that extends the KBI’s ability to serve deported migrants, educate the public on immigration issues, and provide data for critical research and advocacy. As Father Sean expressed in his remarks that evening, the KBI is grateful to all the donors and supporters who make the KBI possible. We include photos by Johnny Lazoya, who donated his talents.