Plans in full swing for annual Signature Event

By Tom Kirvan
Legal News

It may be months away and will come at a time when tulips are in bloom, but the 2023 Signature Event already is on the minds of organizers of the annual fund-raiser for the Oakland County Bar Foundation.

OCBF officials recently began their push to round up sponsors for the festive event, which will take place on Thursday, May 4 at Orchard Lake Country Club.

“As you already know, this is the only fund-raising event held by the Oakland County Bar Foundation,” said OCBF President Marc Jerabek wrote in an e-mail sent to past and prospective sponsors. “It has helped OCBF fund over $3.2 million in grants within the last 20 years.”

The foundation, according to Jerabek, “remains a necessary component to ensuring that legal aid and education programs are properly funded throughout Oakland County and the surrounding areas.

“Over the past few years, our foundation and the grant recipients that we support have had to pivot significantly — balancing an increase in need with a decrease in funds raised,” noted Jerabek, a partner at Plunkett Cooney. “We saw things begin to turn around in 2022, though, and this year we are hopeful that sponsorships and attendance at our event will continue to increase.”

Last year, the OCBF raised over $203,000 to fund nonprofits in the area.

“This was only achieved with your assistance,” he said in his email. “You make the difference in helping the OCBF meet its mission.”

Attorneys David Plunkett and Patrick McCarthy, co-chairs of the fund-raising effort for the Signature Event, issued a joint plea for support of the spring gala.

“Our sponsors and donors continue to make a difference in the county by supporting programs funded by the OCBF,” they wrote. “A family was legally reunited after waiting over two years with the assistance of a legal aid program funded by the OCBF because of your sponsorship. A child was given proper therapy for abuse and access to community resources that they may not have been able to attain if it wasn’t for you.”

Among the programs that were supported in 2021-22 were Lakeshore Legal Aid; Michigan Center for Civic Education; CARE House; Society of Active Retirees; Southwest Detroit Immigrant and Refugee Center; Legal Aid and Defender Association; Beaumont Foundation; La Casa Amiga; and various public service initiatives of the Oakland County Bar Association.

Sponsorship opportunities range in size from the Bronze ($1,000), Silver ($2,500), and Gold ($5,000) levels to the Platinum ($10,000) and Presenting ($20,000), according to Jerabek.

“Regardless of your level of sponsorship, your involvement and contributions allow the foundation to carry on its work in supporting those community programs that are in dire need,” said Jerabek.

Tickets to the event at Orchard Lake Country Club cost $195.

Contact Katie Tillinger at (248) 334-3400 for more information.



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