PeerForward Gala Celebrates the Power of Peers

Andrew Shue (left) moderating a panel of PeerForward alumni Moises Urena, Kamara Grenardo, and Siri Rocio (from left to right.)

Our PeerForward family of students, alumni, educators and staff gathered Tuesday, October 16, with nearly 200 supporters at the InterContinental Barclay in New York City to celebrate the power of positive peer influence at the annual PeerForward Gala. With the generosity of our supporters, we raised $66,000 during the text-to-pledge for the PeerForward program and the students we serve.

This year’s Gala was truly a manifestation of the spirit and work of our organization because it was facilitated and hosted purely by our students and alumni. That night, alumni like Cornelius Williams, our evening’s Master of Ceremonies, Moises Urena, Kamara Grenardo, and Siri Rocio shared their stories and allowed us to see first-hand the profound impact that PeerForward has had in the lives of those it has touched.

Gerald Greenwald, recipient of the Lifetime Peer Leader Award. 

Peer Leaders from Queens Preparatory Academy, one of our partner schools in New York City, joined us to present our evening’s honoree, Gerald Greenwald, with the Lifetime Peer Leader Award. This award honors Mr. Greenwald for his tireless dedication to our mission of improving postsecondary outcomes for students in low-income communities and those who are first generation to attend college.

We could not have enjoyed such a successful event without the support of our event co-chairs: Scott and Kathleen Kapnick; Laura Samberg and The Samberg Family Foundation; Owen Ryan and Geller & Company; Boris Bershteyn and Skadden, Arps, Meagher & Flom LLP; Charles and Susan Harris; Billy Butcher; Dionne Rogers; and Anthony Ekmekjian.

We would also like to extend our sincere thanks to all our event sponsors: Rebecca and Arthur Samberg; Berkshire Hathaway Energy; the Greenwald Family; Deloitte; Paula Cleary and Paul Farrell; FedEx Corporation; Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver, & Jacobson LLP; McDermott Will and Emery; Mutual of America; Robert and Gillian Steel; Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP; Alliant; Leonard and Judy Lauder; and Dean and Darlene Furbush.

This year’s Gala was a powerful testament to the incredible 20+ years of work our organization has accomplished, and a hopeful indication for the many more lives our peer-to-peer method will continue to change. We thank all our students, alumni, volunteers, supporters, and staff for making it all possible!

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