Youth INC raises a record $3 million at its Celebration Gala

November 10, 2021

Youth INC, a leading venture philanthropy nonprofit in New York City, hosted its 27th Annual Celebration Gala where it honored Adena Friedman, president and CEO, Nasdaq, with the John C. Whitehead Leadership Award and Sister Tesa Fitzgerald, founder and executive director emeritus, Hour Children, with the organization’s inaugural Lifetime Achievement award. The hybrid event, held at Goldman Sachs’ global headquarters, achieved unprecedented fundraising results, raising over $3 million to invest in Youth INC’s powerful network of more than 75 nonprofit partners.

Youth INC’s Celebration Gala is the organization’s annual signature event through which it raises unrestricted funds to provide its network of nonprofit partners with the tools and resources they need to help over 200,000 New York City youth achieve their full potential. 

“I want to congratulate Youth INC on another successful Celebration Gala and to thank you for this honor,” said Friedman. “Youth INC is all about change—how to create it, how to sustain it, and how to scale it. By leveraging best practices to build momentum and supercharge impact, they are changing lives, one step at a time. I look forward to our continued partnership with Youth INC and supporting their programs that are creating our future leaders.” 

Rehana Farrell, Youth INC, presents Adena Friedman, Nasdaq, with the John C. Whitehead Leadership Award

Prior honoree, Roger Ferguson, former president and CEO, TIAA and former vice chair, Board of Governors to the US Federal Reserve System, and Annette Nazareth, senior counsel, Davis Polk & Wardwell and former commissioner, US Securities and Exchange Commission, presented the John C. Whitehead Leadership award to Friedman in recognition of her distinguished leadership in advancing diversity, social responsibility, and inclusive board governance. During the event, Friedman joined Youth INC’s National Advisory Board member, John Waldron, president and COO, Goldman Sachs, in a fireside chat on current issues in business and philanthropy. Friedman was also recognized by other industry leaders including Joe Hardiman, chair, Brown Advisory Funds and former CEO, Nasdaq; Glenn Hutchins, chair, North Island and co-founder, Silver Lake Partners; David Rubenstein, co-founder and co-executive chair, The Carlyle Group; Dan Schulman, CEO, PayPal; Robert Thomson, CEO, News Corp; and Alfred Zollar, executive partner, Siris Capital Group, Nasdaq board of directors.

L-R: John Waldron, Goldman Sachs and Adena Friedman, Nasdaq

The event also included a heartfelt acceptance speech by Sister Tesa, who in 1986 founded Hour Children, a longstanding Youth INC nonprofit partner and a leading provider of prison- and community-based family services. Over the course of its long partnership, Youth INC has invested over $500,000 in building the capacity of Hour Children through its programs and cash grants. Hour Children and Sister Tesa leveraged that support into an expansion into Bedford Hills and Taconic Correctional Facilities, opening multiple new communal homes, expanding its daycare, after-school, and teen programs serving hundreds of children, and building a community for thousands of women and their children to thrive as a family.

“My heart is filled to overflowing, as I accept the honor bestowed on me by the wonderful people of Youth INC, their inaugural Lifetime Achievement award,” said Sister Tesa. “You have encountered, encouraged, and empowered our staff in their work with justice-involved mothers and their children. Because of your dedication and involvement, Hour Children works towards its mission of service to mothers and children better, stronger, and more effectively.”

“The pandemic exposed the inequities in our community so that everyone now understands that the need for Youth INC’s nonprofit partners has never been greater. The best thing we can do for the young people of New York City is to give them a sense of confidence and resilience to be able to set goals and persevere in the face of life’s challenges,” said Rehana Farrell, executive director of Youth INC. “We are incredibly grateful to everyone who helped make this year’s Celebration Gala the most successful in our history, fueling our work for another year.” 

Adena Friedman with members of Youth INC’s Board of Directors, National Advisory Board, and Young Professionals Board

Youth INC’s Celebration Gala brought together a slate of influential business leaders who served as vice chairs, helping to make this event a tremendous success:

  • Stephanie Cohen, global co-head of Consumer and Wealth Management, Goldman Sachs
  • Carmine Di Sibio, global chair and CEO, EY
  • Jeff Holzschuh, chair of the Institutional Securities Group, Morgan Stanley and Youth INC National Advisory Board member
  • Kristin Lemkau, CEO, J.P. Morgan Wealth Management
  • Dan Lovinger, executive vice president, advertising, sales and sponsorship, NBC Sports Group
  • Alison Mass, chairman of the Investment Banking Division, Goldman Sachs
  • Steve Orr, co-founder and managing partner, Orr Group and Youth INC Founder and National Advisory Board member 
  • Dhananjay Pai, president and COO, P. Schoenfeld Asset Management and Youth INC board co-chair
  • Richard Schifter, senior advisor, TPG Capital and Youth INC National Advisory Board member
  • Alan Schwartz, executive chair, Guggenheim Partners and Youth INC National Advisory Board member
  • George Stamas, senior partner, Gibson Dunn & Crutcher and Youth INC National Advisory Board member
  • Paul J. Taubman, founder, chair and CEO, PJT Partners and Youth INC National Advisory Board member
  • Janet Truncale, vice chair and regional managing partner, EY Americas Financial Services Organization (FSO) 
  • Ted Virtue, founder and CEO, MidOcean Partners and Youth INC National Advisory Board member
  • John Waldron, president and COO, Goldman Sachs and Youth INC National Advisory Board member
  • Jonathan Weiss, CEO of Corporate and Investment Banking, Wells Fargo and Youth INC National Advisory Board member
  • Mrs. John C. Whitehead

Event Co-Chairs include:  

  • Anu Aiyengar, co-head of Global M&A, JP Morgan Chase & Co. and Youth INC board director
  • William Derrough, managing director and co-head of Recapitalization and Restructuring Group, Moelis & Company and Youth INC board vice president
  • Stratton Heath, partner, Oak Hill Capital and Youth INC board director
  • Douglas Kaden, managing partner, SDC Capital Partners and Youth INC Board Director
  • Barbara Marcin, Youth INC board vice president, Youth INC
  • Kathleen McCabe, partner, PJT Partners and Youth INC board co-president
  • Emmett McCann, managing director, Oaktree Capital Management and Youth INC board director
  • Robert McCooey, senior vice president, Nasdaq and Youth INC board director
  • Amy Miller, managing director and global head of Loan Syndications, Scotiabank and Youth INC board director
  • Daniel Pine, managing principal, CS Capital Advisors and Youth INC board director
  • Kenneth Prince, head of capital markets, Americas, Advent International Corporation and Youth INC board director
  • Adrianne Shapira, managing director, Eurazeo and Youth INC board director
  • Mai Shiver, chief compliance officer, AIG and Youth INC board director
  • Wray Thorn, founder and CEO, Clear Heights Capital and Youth INC board co-chair
  • Evan Wildstein, partner, Kohlberg & Company and Youth INC board co-president 

Celebration Gala was made possible through the generous support of its community of supporters, including:

Premier Sponsors – Corporate: Canaccord Genuity; EY; Goldman Sachs Gives; Nasdaq; RBC Capital Markets. Personal: Barbara Marcin; Nancy and Alan Schwartz; Amanda and John Waldron.

Titanium Sponsor – Personal: Stratton and Rhonda Heath; Jamie King, Brendan Brothers and Raymond Pretty on behalf of Verafin. 

Diamond Sponsors – Corporate: Antares Capital, L.P.; Citi; Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP; Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP; JPMorgan Chase & Co; News Corp; Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison; PayPal; Spectrum Equity, Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP. Personal: Barbara Asch and Jonathan Weiss; Jon Winkelried. 

Platinum Sponsors – Corporate: Alcentra; Alvarez & Marsal; American Airlines; Bank of America; Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP; Deloitte; Dow Inc.; Freshfields; Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver, & Jacobson LLP; Gladstone Place Partners; The Gray Foundation; Kirkland & Ellis LLP; KPMG; Latham & Watkins LLP; Milbank LLP; P. Schoenfeld Asset Management LP; Perella Weinberg Partners; PJT Partners; RelPro; Silver Lake Partners; Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP; Sullivan & Cromwell; United Airlines; Verizon Foundation. Personal: Anu Aiyengar; Joseph Baratta; Stephanie Cohen; Hana and Kelvin Davis; Judy and Jamie Dimon; FX and Natasha de Mallmann; William Q. Derrough; Bruce Evans; Daniel S. Evans; Mark Gallogly and Lise Strickler; Jeffrey and Mary Helen Holzschuh; Douglas M. Kaden; Brian and Beth Levine; Alison Mass; Steve Lipin; Kathleen McCabe and Dana LaForge; Emmett McCann; Stephen and Carol Orr; Heena and Dhananjay M. Pai; Daniel Pine and Lindsey Acree; Ken Prince; Wray Thorn and Melissa Francis; Ted and Dani Virtue; Timothy and Mary Walsh; Amy and Evan Wildstein.

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Youth INC

Youth INC is a network of 80+ of the best youth development nonprofits in New York City. We provide our nonprofit partners with the coaching, capital, and connections required to achieve sustainable growth and maximum impact. Our nonprofit partners collectively champion over 250,000 young people each year. The Aspen Institute estimates that investing in the Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) of young people generates an 11x return. This measure means Youth INC's $110 million raised since inception has yielded over $1B in impact.