Celebration of Hope Dinner

 Registration is closed for this event

October 17, 2017

Reception 6pm | Dinner 7pm  

Fourth Annual Dinner Presented By


Event Sponsor:

$10,000 Reception Sponsor:


$5,000 Table Sponsors:

American Momentum Bank



$3,000 Table Sponsors:

TAMU - Office of the President

Kenny Lawson - CC Creations

JaCody Construction

Project Control

$1,500 Table Sponsors:

Bubba Bean - City of Bryan | Saint-Gobain - Norpro - Catalytic Products I Coca-Cola Southwest

Citizens Bank | Scott & Stephanie Simpson | Citizens State Bank I The Bank & Trust

Prosperity Bank | Wells Fargo | Charles & Bonnie Boatwright | The Ellison Firm

Jim & Jan Hughes I TAMU Athletic Department/12th Man Foundation

Rodgers, Miller & Rodriguez, PC I Anco Insurance I Audio Video Security

In-Kind Sponsor:

City of College Station (Food Underwriter)

David Gardner Jewelers ($10,000 Gift Card Raffle)



What is the Medal of Hope?

The Medal of Hope Award recognizes those who have gone above and beyond in uniquely addressing food insecurity and/or improving the plight of the hungry in the Brazos Valley, the United States and/or the world.




Medal of Hope Award Honoree

Gene Joyce, President of Audio Video

Gene Joyce is from a Methodist family of two school teachers, Jake and Horte, with one sister growing up in Coleman, Texas. 

Gene moved to Bryan-College Station in 1977 to open a new business, Audio Video.  After a “brief” courtship of eight years, Gene married Kathy in 1989.  They have no children just two wonderful beagles.

Kathy and Gene knew from the start that they wanted to do more than work and live here.  They wanted to be involved in making B-CS a better place with an emphasis on children, education, and health.

Most of the time Gene has tried to stay out of Kathy’s way but has joined her for fundraising efforts with the Cattle Baron’s Ball, Heart Association’s Heart Rock, and the St. Joseph Brazos Bash which they co-chaired in 1998.  Gene also served on the Boys & Girls Club Celebrity Golf committee before Kathy but knew her skills were needed.

Audio Video and Audio Video Security have given Gene the chance to find ways to serve on numerous civic committees for the Chamber of Commerce, the City of College Station, as well as on a liaison committee established to create better communications between Bryan, College Station, Brazos County, and Texas A&M University.

Gene was a founding and a current member of the College Station ISD Education Foundation.  His eleven years on the Board started with the first three years as President.  The dedication and professionalism of the teachers and staff inspires the Board to fund innovative teaching methods and scholarships for the students.

The potential for the Brazos Food Bank attracted Gene’s attention where he served for twelve years on the Board including three years as the President.  The growth has been phenomenal but the need continues to grow.


Keynote Speaker

Maryum Ali, Eldest Daughter of Muhammad Ali, Social Worker, Activist, and Author

Maryum Ali, affectionately known as May May, was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois and is the eldest child of boxing legend Muhammad Ali’s nine children. Maryum performed as a stand-up comedian for twelve years in venues across the country filling rooms with humor and insightful observations of social issues. In 1992, she released a rap album, viewing music as a way to inspire youth to strive for their dreams despite challenges and hardships. When the rap industry began focusing on music filled with violence and female exploitation, Maryum decided to find a more direct way of helping young people. She left show business and got her B.A. Degree in Social Work.

Maryum has years of experience in delinquency prevention and family development, from direct practice with over 300 families to working as a Regional Manager for the Mayor’s Office of Gang Reduction & Youth Development in the City of Los Angeles, CA. Maryum is the author of a children’s picture book about her father titled, I Shook Up the World: The Incredible Life of Muhammad Ali. She is also a spokesperson for Team Parkinson and The Parkinson’s Unity Walk. More recently, A&E Network heard about Maryum’s gang prevention work in Los Angeles and invited her to participate in their new docuseries, 60 Days In, that premiered in March 2016. On this show, Maryum served 60 days in an Indiana jail as an undercover inmate with the mission of giving the County Sheriff recommendations on ways to reform the jail.


Proceeds from the event will support the Brazos Valley Food Bank's new program:

Together We Grow

About Together We Grow

Together We Grow (TWG) is a new anti-poverty program of the Brazos Valley Food Bank (BVFB), and provides collaborative, comprehensive wraparound services to support personal and professional gains for some of our local food insecure. The goal is to shorten the lines at our local food pantries and improve lives one family at a time.

• Casework and Supportive Services

  • Participants work with TWG staff to identify and address barriers in their lives that may be preventing stable employment.
  • A service plan is developed to address those barriers through resources, training and counseling that empower participants to meet those needs. Needs of the entire family unit will be addressed.
  • Stipends, Savings Match Accounts and Resource Funds will be tools available for participants.

• Training, Job Placement and Ongoing Workplace Support

  • Participants work with TWG staff to identify their workplace strengths, as well as areas for growth.
  • Participants learn soft skills (punctuality, following instructions, initiative, teamwork) that will be used, in conjunction with mentorship, to create a resume, cover letter, practice interview skills, and eventually supported living wage employment.
  • After participants are matched with a favorable job, TWG staff continue contact with participants to eliminate potential setbacks in employment stability.

TWG incorporates an onsite Community Garden that specifically fills two needs: 1) access to fresh, nutritious food for program participants and 2) a learning lab that provides opportunities for participants to apply leadership and management skills learned – i.e. “classroom” knowledge - to benefit not only the growth of the garden, but personal growth towards stable and supportive employment.


This is a Raise the Paddle event. Click here to learn more!



Questions? Contact Bonnie Boatwright at 979-229-0220 or bonnie@boatwright.me


Unable to make it to the Celebration of Hope Dinner?  Please consider making a donation in support of Brazos Valley Food Bank's new program: Together we Grow. When making your donation, please select that you would like to restrict your gift to the Together We Grow program.  Click here to donate now!

October 17th, 2017 6:00 PM
801 University Drive East
College Station, TX 77840
United States
Phone: 979-229-0220
Table Sponsorship Level 1 $ 5,000.00
Table Sponsorship Level 2 $ 3,000.00
Table Sponsorship Level 3 $ 1,500.00
Individual Seat $ 150.00

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