Even though it rained for the first time in the event’s 12-year history, more than 100 players and volunteers turned out for our annual fundraiser on August 7.
Washington Redskins alumni and first responders from Loudoun County, Virginia, were among the VIP guests who joined two dozen teams on the links at Trump National Golf Club’s Championship Course, which was the site of the Senior PGA Championship earlier this year.
“We were pleased to welcome three new sponsors this year; Insperity, Pure Storage and ePlus,” said YouthQuest Foundation Board Secretary and Tournament Committee Chairman Bill Hall.
Returning sponsors were AOC Solutions, 3Delta Systems, FEDAC Processing, Insurance Associates, the Poole Foundation, PNC, Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar, Jones Lang LaSalle, Ritzert & Leyton PC, CrossFit PR Star, Experis Technology Group, AC Properties and Valley Forge Acquisition Corporation.
The tournament Silent Auction raised more money than ever and we collected an additional $2,500 through a new fundraising tool, the Giving Tree. The tree displayed at the post-tournament reception was decorated with tags that were 3D printed in our lab. Each tag gave donors an easy way to provide equipment, supplies and other resources for students in our 3D ThinkLink Initiative for at-risk youth.
During the post-tournament reception, AOC Solutions National Sales Manager Tammy Haug was presented with YouthQuest’s Volunteer of the Year Award. In addition to working the golf tournament every year, she helped with our 10th Anniversary Celebration and the workshops we ran to introduce kids to 3D printing at the National Society of Black Engineers Convention in Anaheim, California, in 2015.
Laura d’All, general manager of Copy General’s East Coast Production Center in Sterling, Virginia, also was on hand to accept YouthQuest’s 2017 Community Partner Award. Copy General prints the golf tournament program each year and has made many generous contributions to advance our programs that serve America’s at-risk youth.
Supporters also gathered at Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar in Tysons Corner on August 3 for our annual VIP Reception, where we showcased our 3D ThinkLink Youth Mentor project. Guests watched a video about top graduates of our 3D design and printing classes at Maryland’s Freestate and DC’s Capital Guardian Youth ChalleNGe Academies who completed a week of training in our lab to share their skills and serve as positive role models in their communities.
Also at the VIP Reception, we announced IMADE3D as the winner of our 2017 Strategic Partner Award. The company makes the JellyBox, a unique, easy-to-assemble 3D printer kit designed especially for education. YouthQuest and IMADE3D have worked together since 2015. Advanced 3D ThinkLink students in our lab were the first group to test-build JellyBoxes with the inventors, Ladi Goc and his son Filip Goc, observing the process. The feedback from the students helped IMADE3D perfect the design and refine the assembly instructions before putting the JellyBox on the market. Now we have several of them in our lab.
New York Times bestselling author John Gilstrap was at both receptions to sign copies of Final Target, the latest book in his Jonathan Grave thriller series. John supports the 3D ThinkLink Initiative by serving as the judge in our essay contests. Twice a year, we invite ChalleNGe Academy students to write about how being in our 3D class affected them personally. The winners receive $500 scholarships to pursue higher education or vocational training.
Missing from this year’s tournament was Golf Entertainer Brad Denton, who has been part of the event for several years. Brad was injured in a serious car crash the week before the tournament, but he’s on the road to recovery now. To show our appreciation for him, tournament participants made donations to buy a $750 Tech Pack (3D printer, software and laptop), which will be given to a Youth Mentor on Brad’s behalf.
We look forward to having Brad back in action at our next tournament, scheduled for August 6, 2018.