In April the Lafayette Catholic School System (LCSS) celebrated the 25th Annual Blue Knight Auction (BKA). After 25 years being a part of our LCSS community, it remains the community standard for events in Greater Lafayette. The generosity of our community continues to amaze me and we cannot say THANK YOU enough!
The expectations set for the 25th BKA were high. We did not meet the financial expectations, but the evening was a success. Over 425 guests raised $332,303, making the 25th the fourth best auction in the system’s history. Through the leadership and personal testimony of Jim Cooley, Class of 1987, $95,000 was raised during the personal appeal. For the second year in a row, our principals and teachers led the efforts for direct support in the classroom. Over 200 items were made available for donors to purchase across all four schools. Nearly 100 items were purchased for the teacher’s classrooms through $10,354 in donations. After all expenses were paid and donor restricted funds deposited, $216,707 was raised for student aid. We are grateful to all of our supporters who made this possible.
This year we introduced the Silver Ticket Raffle and it will not be the last. All 150 tickets were sold for $100 each. The winner was given their choice of one item from the Oral Auction or Free Tuition for a Year for One Student. School parents, Larry and Katrina Fultz,
were the first time winners and elected to receive a year of free tuition for one of their three children who attend the Catholic Schools. Congratulations Larry and Katrina on the win and thank you to everyone who supported this exciting new raffle.
SPONSORS & VOLUNTEERS
Corporate sponsors play a critical role to the financial success of our schools and are a big part of the Blue Knight Auction. They do everything from providing direct financial support to donating services. Thank you Auto Express, Roeing Corporation, Keller Williams Albregts Team, DeFouw Automotive, M.P. Baker Electric, sdi Innovations, Keller Williams Scott M. Brown, Lafayette Country Club, Soller Baker Funeral Homes, Inc., Promenade Self Storage, Team MJV and Sunbelt Rentals. If you know one of these company owners, please say Thank You.
It takes an army of volunteers to plan, build and execute the BKA. In November 2017, the Advancement Office lost our Event Manager. A lot of planning and execution needed to get done and there was no one in place to lead the efforts. I would like to publicly thank individuals who walked into a difficult situation to make this event successful: Katie Hensley, Jenny Bogan, Brian Roark, Lindsey Bogan, Chelsey Dowden, Laura DeFabio Smith, Jim Cooley, Stephen Weintraut, Paul Page, Kari Schrader, Tricia Olinger, Tori Hart, Jenny Peters, Elena Fine, Joe Gerrety, Lisa Fusiek, Paul Frey, Kirsten Brkaric, and all of our faculty and staff who went above and beyond…THANK YOU!!! The volunteer effort this year was remarkable from our students, parents, staff and friends. It takes a village to make our System great and we could not have done it without you.
Following the auction we sent a brief survey to all guest and volunteers. The number of responses we received was impressive and we were grateful for the thoughtful feedback. The survey data has been shared with several Committees, Administration and Principals. We were overwhelmed with the positive feedback and see areas for improvement. I am excited to share, plans are already under way for the April 26, 2019 Blue Knight Auction, with an exceptional leader. Christine Siemers, who is no stranger to the auction or any LCSS event, accepted the Event Manager role in June. Christine has hit the ground running and is an exciting addition to our School System. If you would like to get involved, please contact Christine or myself. We are always searching for more people to get involved.
SPECIAL THANK YOU
It is with extreme sadness and gratitude to recognize Kate Hensley.
When Kate is not busy being a spouse, raising five children, watching a sporting event, working as a nurse or helping somewhere in our schools, she has made the time and led the effort to run one of the best back-of-house operations for the BKA. For 20 years, Kate has secured, trained and led hundreds of volunteers preparing food, serving dinner, running the bar, and stepping into any role that needs filled. Kate embodies what it means to be a servant leader. After 20 years of service, she is stepping away from the auction to spend more time as a spouse and mother. We are going to deeply miss her leadership, knowledge and spirit. THANK YOU Kate for everything you have done and continue to do for our schools!!!
Our Catholic schools could not exist without the support of our entire community and they are thriving because of the strong commitment by so many. With a heart filled with gratitude, I want to say thank you to all of our supporters for your strong commitment to Catholic education.