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Say Amen Gala

"Say Amen" Gala

Mathews-Dickey ‘Say Amen’ Gala Generates ‘Blues for Thought’

Bill Donius, a New York Times Best-Selling author, will be the keynote speaker.

Daryl Darden will perfom his soulful tunes.

The Jack Buck “That's A Winner” Award goes to owner and general manager of the St. Louis Surge, Khalia Collier.


Education Fund-raiser Features Speech by Bill Donius, Performance by Blues Artist Daryl Darden and Awards to Bob Ciapciak, Khalia Collier, Rev. Starsky Wilson, Jaylen Bledsoe, and others.

Mathews-Dickey Boys’ & Girls’ Club is generating “Blues for Thought” at its 26th Annual Clifton Davis “Say Amen” Gala, set for 5 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 8, 2015 at the Hilton St. Louis at the Ballpark, One S. Broadway in downtown St. Louis.  The black-tie optional gala features the presentation of awards to youth, adult volunteers and community leaders; a performance by the Daryl Darden Band out of Los Angeles; and keynote address by former Pulaski Bank Chairman & CEO Bill Donius, author of the New York Times Best-Seller “Thought Revolution: How to Unlock Your Inner Genius.” Missouri Governor Jeremiah “Jay” Nixon will provide the welcome that evening and announce state support for the organization’s Bob Russell Park in Bellefontaine Neighbors.

The distinguished awards slate is headlined by four distinguished St. Louisans.

  • Bob Ciapciak, principal of Edward Jones, is recognized with the Benjamin F. Edwards III Award.  A respected and highly admired member of the St. Louis community, Ciapciak’s leadership has helped worthy causes such as the American Red Cross, the United Way, the St. Louis Sports Commission, Fair St. Louis and the Arts and Education Council, just to name a few.  
  • The Jack Buck “That’s A Winner” Award goes to Mathews-Dickey alumnae Khalia Collier, owner and general manager of St. Louis Surge, a professional women’s basketball team in St. Louis.  At 23, she has taken on the challenge of building the first sustainable women’s professional franchise.  
  • Rev. Starsky Wilson, president & CEO of Deaconess Foundation and head of the Ferguson Commission, receives the Bill Maritz Memorial.  Through the foundation and his community work, Wilson is an advocate for change and progress in the St. Louis community, with a special passion for increasing the well-being of vulnerable children in the urban core areas of the region. 
  • Jaylen Bledsoe is the receipient of the Outstanding Youth Achiever award for his dedication with our youth. Bledsoe led a two week entrepreneur camp this summer, helping 15 aspiring entrepreneurs receive real life experiences and advice to help them realize their dreams. Bledsoe is a teen entrepreneur, being merely 12 when he started his Internet consultation company, but now, at 17, he has clients like Steve Harvey and Jordin Sparks.
  • Mathews-Dickey also will bestow the Outstanding Computer Literacy Volunteer Award to Express Scripts' Andre Edison, Outstanding Tutor Volunteer to Mathews-Dickey Alumnae and Barnes Jewish Hospital Nurse Jocelyn Davis, Scholar Athlete to Quentin Phillips, a 18-year-old graduate of Cardinal Ritter; and Academic Scholar to Sydney Green, an 18-year-old graduate of Carnahan High.

Award presenters include St. Louis Blues Owner Tom Stillman, Ameren Illinois President Richard Mark, St. Louis Fire Department Battalion Chief Michael Richardson, Missouri Housing Development Commission community liaison Senator Rita Heard Days, Maritz Senior Manager of Operations Rosa Rue-Brown, Centene Corporation Executive VP of Corporate Secretary and General Counsel Keith Williamson and St. Louis Sports Commission President Frank Viverito.  The event steering committee chairman is Ernst & Young Executive Director Mike Weiss, and the festivities are emceed by KMOX Radio’s Jon Grayson. It all starts with cocktails and the “Jack Buck Celebrity” silent auction at 5 p.m. with the awards program, plated dinner, entertainment and keynote starting at 6 p.m. Attendees will also be treated to a live auction with VIP items.

 “Say Amen” also features down home blues entertainment from Daryl Darden and his band. Guitarist and singer Daryl Darden brings the spirit of jazz greats George Benson, Al Jarreau and Wes Montgomery together with the party-energy of Earth, Wind and Fire, The Spinners, Stevie Wonder and The Isley Brothers.  A St. Louis native who now lives in Hollywood, Darden and his band members have performed alongside the late BB King, Stevie Wonder, Albert King, Bobby McFerrin, Bonnie Raitt, Joey McIntyre and Richard “Groove” Holmes.

There will also be plenty of food for thought delivered by Donius as keynote speaker.  Coming from a banking family, he rose through the ranks of corporate America to become Chairman and CEO of Pulaski Bank in St. Louis and serve on the US Federal Reserve Board – TIAC Council under Chairman Ben Bernake in Washington, DC. Donius led the bank through a successful initial public offering in 1998 and spearheaded its growth eight-fold in size to $1.4 billion in assets. Pulaski Bank was ranked one of the top performing small banks in the country by SNL Financial, voted Best Place to work in St. Louis in 2007 by the St. Louis Business Journal, and received a Torch Award in 2008 from the Better Business Bureau for excellence in ethics and customer service.   Today, Donius uses the principals from his New York Times Best-Seller “The Thought Revolution” to literally teach people to think differently.  His ideation sessions have yielded impressive results for small and global-sized organizations, for teams of as few as four and as many as 200.

Available sponsorship levels include:

PLATINUM | $25,000
Logo recognition in all materials as presenting sponsor  Donors receive two tables of 10
and major sponsor recognition in the souvenir booklet, video and acknowledgments.  

AMEN SPONSOR | $10,000
Premiere seating table of 10, logo placement in souvenir booklet/video and  
mention in publicity materials. 
Preferred seating table of 10 tickets, logo placement in souvenir booklet and mention in publicity
THAT’S A WINNER |  $2,500
Special seating table of 10 and “That’s A Winner” sponsor listing in souvenir booklet.

Table of 10 and listing in souvenir booklet.

TICKETS | $100 Each

Click Here to make a donation now.

The presenting sponsor is Centene/Home State Health Plan.  The Platinum sponsor is the St. Louis Fire Department. The Amen sponsors are Edward Jones and World Wide Technology/Steward Family Foundation.  Corporate donors are Ameren, The Catherine Manley Gaylord Foundation, Engelhardt Family Foundation and Maritz.

Net proceeds help Mathews-Dickey offer youth positive leadership and career training experiences; build strong bodies and minds in sports & recreation and encourage them to explore their artistic and cultural aspirations.  For tickets or more information call Bill Fronczak at 314.679.5228 or Ty Howard at 314.679.5232.

Mathews-Dickey is a non-profit 501(c)(3) United Way member agency that provides education enrichment, cultural arts & health, sports & recreation and summer day camp programs for thousands of metro area children.

Bill Maritz Award goes to Rev. Starsky Wilson, president and CEO of the Deaconess Foundation.

The Benjamin F. Edwards III Award goes to Bob Ciapciak, principal of Edward Jones.

The Outstanding Youth Achiever Award goes to Jaylen Bledsoe, CEO of Bledsoe Technologies, LLC.






Mathews-Dickey Boys' & Girls' Club is a nonprofit 501 (c) (3) United Way member agency that annually provides educational, athletic and cultural enrichment programs to more than 40,000 young people from throughout the St. Louis metropolitan area. Since 1960 the Club has taught youth respect, restraint and responsibility so that they may obtain credibility, integrity and accountability. For more information, call Bill Fronczak at (314) 382-5952, ext. 228.