Leadership programs for more than 23,000 Orange County Girl Scouts will be funded thanks to a recent Newport Beach leadership gala which raised more than $200,000.
The third annual Celebrate Leadership Gala was held in October at the Island Hotel in Newport Beach and raised $218,000, according to event organizers. The money will support the Girl Scouts of Orange County’s leadership development programs for more than 23,000 Girl Scouts who represent every neighborhood and zip code in Orange County.
The funding will also be used to recruit, train, and support the more than 10,000 adult volunteers who guide and support the Girls Scouts.
Along with raising money, the gala was used to recognize a group of successful women, some from Newport Beach, who have used their Girl Scouts leadership skills in their respective careers.
Newport Beach Honorees:
- Corona del Mar resident Victoria Collins is the director of First Foundation Inc., a wealth management firm which she co-founded and serves on the Dean's Advisory Board for the Paul Merage School of Business of the University of California, Irvine. She is active in philanthropy and is a founding member of United Way's Women's Philanthropy Fund. Collins was a Girl Scout in Kettering, Ohio and says Girl Scouts helped her build a sense of herself, pride in what she could do, and appreciation for others and how to accomplish things together.
- Corona del Mar resident Janet Toll Davidson, a retired partner from Paul Hastings LLP, grew up as a Girl Scout in Los Angeles and said her experience helped her learn the value of teamwork and leadership. Davidson used these skills to become the first woman to hold a managing partner position for a major law firm in Orange County. Davidson still counts the childhood friends she made in Girl Scouts among her closest.
- Newport Beach resident Kathryn Cenci is director of community relations at South Coast Plaza. Cenci was a Girl Scout in Upstate New York before moving to Southern California as a teenager. She says her dedication to community service, inspired during her years as a Girl Scout, has been central to her life and career.
- Newport Beach resident Sophie Hall Cripe is a community volunteer whose nine years of Girl Scouting in Illinois introduced her to the worlds of travel, theater, books, conservation and many other interests. Cripe credits selling Girl Scout Cookies with introducing her to philanthropy and fundraising, which has been her lifelong passion and career.
- Newport Beach resident Barbara Roberts is a volunteer and philanthropist, serving as Emeritus Trustee for the South Coast Repertory and is on the Advisory Committee of the National Choreographers Initiative. When she was young, Roberts was a Girl Scout in New Jersey with her twin sister Nancy and as an adult, led her daughter’s Brownie Troop in Newport Beach.