The GSBA Blog

$775,000 raised to send our LGBTQ and allied students to college!

| Nov 24, 2015


TASTE of GSBA co-chairs Kevin Gaspari and Kent Thoelke.

You did it. Congratulations!

The TASTE of GSBA is all about a community coming together for its own. How thrilling to see over 800 guests enjoying each other, wonderful food created by GSBA member restaurants and caterers; incredible wine tastes from the 12 wineries featured in the Wine Lounge; outstanding entertainment by Robbie Turner and company; our celebrity chefs: Maria Hines, Agrodolce, Golden Beetle and Tilth; Leslie Mackie, Macrina; Tamara Murphy, Terra Plata; and Jerry Traunfeld, Poppy, Lionhead; a sit-down dinner; and a silent and live auction featuring wine, chef experiences and travel.

Robbie Turner and his dancers set the tone for a night of Cabaret fun and glamour while our extraordinary auctioneer, Laura Michalek and the very talented and delightful Emcee, Amanda Westbrooke kept us engaged and bidding. Speaking of bidding, thank you to Glenn Johnson and Michael Melancon for leading the Fund-A-Scholar with a $25k gift, followed by another amazing $20k gift from Microsoft and from there, the magic spread. Announcing the $100k Leadership Match, the room went into action and that match and more was met in minutes resulting in over $310k raised just during Fund-A-Scholar. Breathtaking!

None of this would be possible without you, our guests and our wonderful sponsors. A big shout out to our Title Sponsor, 1st Security Bank; our Presenting Sponsor, Nesteggg and our Marquee Sponsors: AHF, Alaska Airlines, Carter Subaru, Gordon Biersch, Holland America, JPMorgan Chase, Safeco, Starline, Svedka Vodka and UW Medicine; TASTE Premier Sponsors: The Sheraton and Hogue Cellars and generous support from: Aria Style, Girlie Press, Reliable Movers, Team Photogenic and Village Theatre. We are especially appreciative of our Jewel Sponsors who invest in both the Chamber and the Scholarship Fund -- Diamond: Microsoft; Emerald: Alaska Airlines and 1st Security; Ruby: PwC and RBC Wealth Management. And, what would TASTE be without our wonderful restaurant, catering, and wine sponsors: Barrio, Sur 16, Hi Life, Two Tartes, Hook & Plow, Tuxedoes and Tennis Shoes, Café Yumm!, Ernest Loves Agnes, Gordon Biersch, Bartholomew Winery, Browne Family, Canoe Ridge, Elsom Cellars, Fidelitas Winery, Five Star Cellars, Good Ridge Estate Winery, Laurelhurst Cellars, Nota Bene Cellars, Structure Cellars, Va Piano Vineyards, and Waterbrook.

We are overwhelmed by your generosity and commitment to our current and future Scholars!

A huge thank you to Kevin Gaspari and Kent Thoelke, our dream Chairs who for the past two years have led an outstanding TASTE Committee and provided leadership and vision for the TASTE; our incredible Board of Directors, led by Board Chair, Martha Davis and Scholarship Chair, Stephanie Dallas. With their leadership and the support of our stellar staff, led by Director of Programs and Development, Mark Rosen; Program Manager, Mandy Domer and Scholarship Director, Jessica Wootten as well as Ari, Jason, Rachel, Matt and Victoria, we knew we were in for a spectacular evening. And finally, no "thank you" is complete without recognizing the ongoing generosity of our Annual Sponsors -- Platinum: US Bank; Gold: American Family Insurance, Outerwall, Pacific Medical Centers, Wells Fargo; Silver: Boeing, Carter Subaru, Goodwill, Liberty Mutual Insurance, Precision Garage Door, Safeco Insurance, Starbucks, UW Medicine; Bronze: Amazon, Argosy Cruises, Carpet Liquidators, CenturyLink, DML Insurance, Group Health, Irons Brothers Construction, Mona Davis, PLLC, Nesteggg, Overlake Reproductive Health, Whitepages, Verity Credit Union, and Vulcan; Guide Sponsor: BECU; Travel Partners: Alaska Airlines, Sheraton Hotel, Space Needle, VisitSeattle; Travel Sponsors: Amtrak, King County, Port of Seattle, Renaissance Hotel, and Sound Transit. 

Truly a moment for which to be thankful.

If you were not at the TASTE, there is still time to be part of the magic of giving. We invite you to make a year-end gift to your GSBA Scholarship Fund here.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving,
Louise Chernin