YOU AND THE BLUE: Newsletter for Friends of Broward College and Broward College Alumni

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You & the Blue


November 2018


Broward College’s second American Dream Summit on Wednesday, November 7 was a truly inspiring event. More than 220 donors, students, college leaders, Broward College Foundation directors, and sponsors gathered to celebrate another year of success with the American Dream Scholarship initiative.


Captain Barrington Irving informed the attendees that a $2,000 gift has a return of a $38,000 beginning annual salary for a student completing an Associate of Arts degree and a $50,000 beginning salary for a student completing a baccalaureate degree. If you compare these salaries to the average salary of someone who only graduated from high school, in the first year alone there is a return on investment of 32 percent and 632 percent respectively.

The program opened with a moving poem, Ink Stain, by Chaya Zwiebel, first-place winner in an essay competition on the subject of gratitude. Attendees also heard inspiring presentations from Broward College President Gregory Adam Haile, Distinguished Alumnus, Broward College Foundation Director and Guinness World Record Holder Captain Barrington Irving, founder of the Flying Classroom, and inspirational speaker Ginger Martin, President and CEO of American National Bank, who spoke passionately about her experiences scaling the world’s tallest mountains. Broward College’s Vice President for Advancement and Executive Director of the Broward College Foundation Nancy O’Donnell-Wilson served as emcee for the program.


Event chair Jean Seaver, AVP for Learning and Development at Broward Health; keynote speaker Ginger Martin, President and CEO of American National Bank; and Amy Engelberg, Executive Vice President and Chief Lending Officer of American National Bank

In addition to enjoying one of the Signature Grand’s delicious multi-course luncheons, scholarship recipients had the opportunity to attend free workshops on Financial Literacy with Amy Engleberg Mahaney, Executive Vice President and Chief Lending Officer of American National Bank, social media program “Be LinkedIn or Left Behind!” with Debbie Wemyss of DW Consulting Solutions LLC, and Workplace Etiquette with Lori Morton of the Broward College Career Center.


Broward College Foundation director John A. Benz, donor Jamie Finizio-Bascombe, Broward College President Gregory Adam Haile, and donor Marianne Finizio

American National Bank was presenting sponsor for the American Dream Summit, with additional support from Geico, Broward Health and venue Signature Grand. Broward College Foundation board member Jean Seaver, AVP for Learning and Development at Broward Health, served as the event chair.



The American Dream Scholarship was refocused a few years ago and is now awarded to students who have completed 75 percent of their degree program and maintain a grade point average of at least 2.5 or higher. The results have been incredible!

  • The revised American Dream Scholarship has been awarded to more than 1,465 students
  • As of last summer, 1,044 of these students have graduated with a technical certificate, associate or baccalaureate degree – that’s a fantastic 71.3 percent!
  • Nearly half of these graduates were the first in their immediate families to attend college and 98.8 percent of them were pursuing their first post-secondary degree.
  • Overall, they maintained a 3.22 grade point average!


Broward College students signed a banner of appreciation that was given to the American Dream Summit’s presenting sponsor, American National Bank.

Thousands more could benefit from your philanthropic support. Consider investing in this educational endeavor with a secure, charitable donation online.


Each year the Broward College Foundation has the honor of hosting representatives from the Florida College System Foundation as they make their way around the state to deliver scholarships to benefit our students


Distinguished Alumnus and Vice Chair of the Broward College District Board of Trustees David R. Maymon; Broward College Foundation Executive Director and Vice President for Advancement Nancy O’Donnell-Wilson; Mike Rump, Trustee; Distinguished Alumnus George I. Platt, III, Florida College System Foundation Board of Directors; Dr. Karen J. Ortiz, Vice President, Early Grade Success Initiatives, Helios Education Foundation; Broward College President Gregory Adam Haile, Esq.; Sandra M. Juliachs, Senior Vice President, Fort Lauderdale Market Manager, Enterprise Business & Community Engagement, Bank of America; Trustees Chair Gloria M. Fernandez; and Matt Caldwell, Trustee

During the September 25 meeting of the Broward College District Board of Trustees, we announced support totaling $88,625 from the following sources:

  • Bank of America, which since 2001 has been awarding scholarships for first generation in college students that may be used for tuition, books and childcare – $5,481
  • Florida Blue, which has been awarding scholarships for nursing and allied health students for more than a decade – $23,690 (the impact of this will be doubled, thanks to a generous dollar-for-dollar match from the Roy and Kathryn Krause Family Foundation!)
  • the Helios Education Foundation, which has been awarding scholarships for first generation in college students since 2007 – $59,454


On hand to help us celebrate was Broward College Distinguished Alumnus George Platt who serves as member of the Florida College System Foundation’s board of directors.


By a unanimous vote of approval, John Benz, Jarett Levan and Bev Yanowitch were appointed to the Broward College Foundation Board of Directors during a meeting held on September 27 on the stage of the Ralph R. Bailey Concert Hall on the A. Hugh Adams Central Campus in Davie.


Benz, who served on the Broward College District Board of Trustees for eight years, oversees all operations at Community Care Plan, which services Medicaid, Children’s Medicaid Services Network, and various self-insured employee health plans. With more than 40 years of experience in the healthcare industry, Benz is committed to strengthening the community by focusing on accelerated performance in service, quality, finance, people, and growth. Prior to working with Community Care Plan, Benz served as Senior Vice President and Chief Strategic Officer for Memorial Healthcare System. Benz earned a master’s degree in business from Nova Southeastern University, completed a fellowship program offered by the Healthcare Forum, and is a Diplomate in the American College of Healthcare Executives.


As president of BBX Capital, Levan heads up the diversified investment and asset management company. The business of BBX Capital includes real estate ownership, direct acquisition and joint venture equity in real estate, specialty finance, and the acquisition of controlling and non-controlling investments in operating businesses, including its ownership in Bluegreen Corporation, Hoffman’s Chocolates and IT’SUGAR, and its franchise rights for the state of Florida for MOD Pizza. Levan serves on the boards of the Broward Performing Arts Foundation, the Community Foundation of Broward, the Broward Workshop, and the Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance. He also is the founding Board Chair of Business for the Arts of Broward. A member of the Florida Bar, Levan graduated cum laude from the University of Miami School of Law and earned a bachelor’s degree in finance from Emory University


Yanowitch, a Certified Public Accountant, served as a financial consultant to the Broward College Foundation for 11 years. She previously was CFO of Mackenzie Investment Management, Inc. (Ivy Funds), a publicly-held $7 billion multi-entity investment advisory firm. She was a member of the corporation’s Executive Committee and trustee of the company’s 401(k) plan. She also worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, where she conducted audit engagements for investment management companies (publicly-held), financial institutions, TV stations, and hotels and resorts. She has volunteered for the Broward County Library Foundation and the Children’s Place in West Palm Beach and is a graduate of Leadership Boca. She earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Florida Atlantic University and a bachelor’s degree in organizational behavior from Lesley University


Each new director will serve an initial one-year term.


Nearly 140 people attended the Broward College Foundation’s Excellence in Education Day at Gulfstream Park on Saturday, September 29. The festivities celebrated a $35,000 gift that established the Gulfstream Park American Dream Scholarship.


Broward College Foundation Board Member Derrick Roberts and daughter Kihana; Associate Vice President for Financial Accounting and Investment Management Shannon Roddy; Conner DeSanctis and his mother, College Provost and Senior Vice President Marielena DeSanctis; Gulfstream Park General Manager Bill Badgett; Jockey Emisael Jaramillo; Broward College President Gregory Adam Haile with his daughter Sloane Haile, wife Chae Haile, and daughter Hadley Haile; Vice President for Information Technology Patti Barney; Associate Director for Institutional Events Teresa Simeon; and Senior Professor James Lansing

The fifth race of the day was dedicated to Broward College, and after Horse #5 “Zenden” zipped past Horse #1 “Jamaican” and crossed the finish line, President Gregory Adam Haile and his family were joined by Broward College Foundation Director Derrick Roberts and others in the Winner’s Circle for a ceremonial check presentation.


During the October 23 meeting of the Broward College District Board of Trustees meeting, the Broward College Foundation recognized JM Family Enterprises for its 25 years of support and announced its recent five-year commitment of $75,000 for the American Dream Scholarship.


Broward College President Gregory Adam Haile; Nancy O’Donnell-Wilson, Vice President for Advancement and Executive Director of the Broward College Foundation; Kim Bentley, Assistant Vice President for Corporate Philanthropy, JM Family Enterprises; Trustee Mike Rump, Trustee’s Chair Gloria M. Fernandez, and Vice Chair David R. Maymon

Representing JM Family Enterprises was their Assistant Vice President for Corporate Philanthropy, Kim Bentley, who brought a check for $15,000 with her.


Brooke Wertman has joined the Broward College Office of Advancement as Coordinator, Donor Experience. With a background in event coordination in higher education, Brooke has previously worked with FIU in the College of Medicine’s Development office and as the Coordinator for the Transformational Change Collaborative Grant. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Sociology at Florida International University.


Classical, international and jazz music, independent cinema, theatre, dance – there’s something for everyone! Go online and see what’s in store.


When you include the Broward College Foundation in your financial and estate planning, you ensure your legacy of providing opportunity to students who are determined to change their lives through the pursuit of higher education. Help someone become Empowered by Broward!


For more information, email Jim DeChant or call 954-201-7079.


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