|Internationally acclaimed singer and songwriter Paul Anka gives an encore performance at Founders’ Celebration 2006.|
|Approximately 600 alumni, faculty, staff, community leaders and university supporters attended the university?s benefit gala on March 5 at the Pacific Palms Resort in the City of Industry.|
|President Ortiz presents second-year Music major Candice Brown with the inaugural Paul Anka Scholarship for Music award.|
Founders’ Celebration 2006: Anka’s Back! raised $334,367 that will go toward Cal Poly Pomona student scholarships, enhanced technology and facilities, outreach programs, and faculty and student research.
Approximately 600 alumni, faculty, staff, community leaders and university supporters attended the university’s benefit gala on March 5 at the Pacific Palms Resort in the City of Industry.
“With an event this spectacular and successful it could be easy to lose track of the fact that its all about students and student support. But the fact is this outstanding evening will positively change the lives of students for decades to come,” says Scott Warrington, vice president of University Advancement.
The Cal Poly Pomona University Educational Trust (UET) and Collins School alumnus Hae Park and his wife, Shina, co-sponsored this year’s celebration event. The UET manages the university’s $25 million endowment, supporting main fundraising initiatives including Founders’ Celebration. The evening was hosted by supporters Carol and Jim Collins and Andrew and Peggy Cherng of Panda Restaurant Group Inc.
Since its inception in 1999, Founders’ Celebration has raised more than $1.8 million for student scholarships and academic enrichment.
President Michael Ortiz served as the event’s master of ceremonies. Guests participated in a live auction presented by auctioneer Ron Simons, the university’s retiring associate vice president for special projects. Simons was honored for his 37 years of service with a video tribute and the establishment of The Ronald R. Simons Scholarship Endowment. A total of $121,600 was raised for the endowment, highlighted by a $50,000 gift from the estate of Keith Kellogg as well as $10,000 pledges from Sarah and Art Ludwick, Mickey and Lee Segal, Andrew and Peggy Cherng and Kent Valley (Majestic Realty).
A dozen voice auction items contributed $102,500 to the event. Among popular auction items were round-trip tickets to France and a week’s stay in a three-bedroom waterfront apartment; a four-passenger fully loaded electric vehicle; one day’s worth of assistance from members of the university’s Annual Fund student club; and an exclusive dinner for 10 hosted by Mike and Betty Ortiz at the Manor House.
The evening concluded with an entertaining performance by internationally acclaimed singer and songwriter Paul Anka, as an encore to his 2003 concert. Anka belted out many of his hits, including “Put Your Head on My Shoulder” and “Diana,” in addition to a few songs from his newly released “Rock Swings” album.
During Anka’s last appearance in 2003, Cal Poly Pomona announced the establishment of the Paul Anka Scholarship for Music. At the 2006 event, President Ortiz presented second-year Music major Candice Brown with the inaugural award. Brown, an aspiring songwriter, is a member of the Music Entertainment Industry Student Association, and she is a participant in the university’s Music Theater Workshop, Chamber Singers, Jazz Band, Gospel Choir and Guitar Ensemble.
Each year, the university’s reputation for a first-class Founders’ Celebration continues to grow with a line-up that has included the Smothers Brothers, Glen Campbell and Paul Anka. Those who have suggestions for next year’s entertainment (and connections to the entertainer) are encouraged to contact the Founders’ Celebration Committee at (909) 869-5437.
Click here to view a photo gallery of Founders Celebration 2006.