On Saturday, May 10, after the gray clouds had cleared and rain disappeared, Capital Partners for Education, local business leaders and students from the mentoring program gathered for an intimate, private fundraising dinner featuring the culinary cuisine of an award-winning chef, Michel Richard of Citronelle. The event, dubbed “Visions for the Future,” celebrated Capital Partners for Education’s 15th anniversary.
Capital Partners for Education is a local non-profit foundation which provides educational opportunities for local students living in a high needs communities. The foundation, unlike any other in the area, focuses not only on the education component, but also funds projects that provide mentorship, peer activities, and empowerment opportunities. This uniquely crafted event took place poolside at the home of local business leaders and CPE supporters Ken and Kavelle Bajaj. Ken Bajaj is one of the nation's most successful information technology entrepreneurs.
More than 200 guests and 25 students were in for a treat. The event included the charming and comical Washington Wizards announcer Steve Buckhantz “” the dinner's master of ceremonies “”as well as live musical entertainment, cocktails, and a three-course meal prepared by Richard. There was also a silent auction. Auctioned items included an original signed version of Harper Lee's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel To Kill a Mockingbird, an exquiste hancrafted 18 karat white gold with diamond and black pendant worth $4,500, and tickets for a Washington National home game.
But the most coveted item wasn't for bids. At the start of the live auction, the auctioneer gave guests a chance to take a picture with famed chef Richard and walk away with a signed copy of his new cookbook, “Happy in the Kitchen,“ for only $100. The line quickly formed on the dance floor, creating a pool of eager guests. With attendees unified by the belief that success in America is possible through hard work and quality education, more than $300,000 was raised. All in all, this event for a great cause was a success!