“We want to have a great time, but the biggest thing is we want to raise money,” said event Co-chair Elizabeth Gill. “We want to be able to give more back to our community, and that’s what this event is all about.”
She said more than $50,000 was raised from last year’s ball and she hopes to exceed that this year. Proceeds go to the Buckhead Rotary Foundation, which funds various programs and charities the club supports locally and internationally, such as Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts of Atlanta, Habitat For Humanity and Rotary International’s PolioPlus program.
“One of the [charities] we want to highlight this year is our new relationship with the Ronald McDonald House,” Gill said. “They’re going to be tearing down the Ronald McDonald House on Peachtree Dunwoody [Road in Sandy Springs] and … make way for a brand-new, state-of-the-art Ronald McDonald House.
“This is the new signature project that we’re involved with for the next three years. We’re committing now $100,000 over the next three years.”
In addition to raising money for good causes, the ball is an opportunity for fun, networking and special recognition.
“I’m hoping that it will be a joyous occasion,” said event Co-chair Kathleen Gegan.
The black-tie affair will include cocktails, a formal dinner, music, dancing and both silent and live auctions.
The honorees of this year’s celebration are Buckhead residents Laura and Rutherford Seydel, who serve on multiple foundation boards concerned with bettering the environment.
“They are just Buckhead powerhouse people,” Gill said.
“They have given so much to our community.”
Gegan said, “When a few of us [from Rotary] got together, the subject came up of who to invite as honorees, and the first person I thought of was Laura, because she’s done so much.”
Laura Seydel is chairwoman of the Captain Planet Foundation, works with the Environmental Working Group and co-founded Mothers and Others for Clean Air. She is a member of the Rotary Club of Downtown Atlanta. Rutherford Seydel is a partner at Davis, Pickren, Seydel and Sneed and is a co-owner of Atlanta Spirit, which owns the Atlanta Hawks NBA franchise and operating rights to Philips Arena.
The Seydels also co-founded the Chattahoochee Riverkeeper, a nonprofit dedicated to protecting and preserving the Chattahoochee River.
If you go:
o When: Feb. 8 at 7 p.m.
o Where: 103 West, 103 W. Paces Ferry Road, Buckhead
o Tickets: $150 per person
o Information: (404) 358-4089