Reaching New Peaks

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The 1992 ALSAC Conference in Washington, D.C. started with a standing ovation for ESA’s new challenge. Mary K. Frost, 1992 International Council President, announced the challenge ESA for St. Jude State Coordinators had planned for the 1992-1993 year. The challenge was to raise TWO MILLION DOLLARS in just one year for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

terre-with-the-2-million.jpgAfter a year filled with incredible fundraisers, it was time for the 1993 International Council Convention where the big news would be announced. Tension was high as the International Council ESA for St. Jude Coordinators presented a celebratory check to several St. Jude patients along with Terre Thomas, Board Member of ALSAC and Danny’s daughter. The crowd roared when the check for $2,164,320.59 in cash and pledges made out to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital was revealed. The goal was accomplished!

As convention ended and the noise died down, members gathered from Alaska, Tennessee, Georgia, California and all points between to attend ESA’s Super Summit in Estes Park, CO. To start off the weekend, everyone met around the fireplace to tell stories and describe the person they were when they 1993-super-summit.jpgfirst joined ESA. The stories were a true testament of the impact ESA has on its members’ lives. Throughout the trip, members were put in groups to brainstorm four basic discussion topics dealing with education, service, networking ideas and recruitment ideas. By the end of the weekend getaway there were more program ideas and plans than anyone could have hoped for. It was a great start to ESA’s celebration of 65 years of success.

The celebration continued at the 1994 International Council Convention. It was a week full of fun, excitement, learning, sharing of emotions and just plain member love. A three mile walk around a beautifully peaceful lake at 5:30 in the morning raised over $80,000 for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Members had the privilege of hearing stories from St. Jude Research Hospital patients and parents.

The emotions were high when members returned to the fun and laughter as they celebrated ESA’s 65th birthday with a cake. The best surprise was “Teen Angel,” International Council President Kaye Genovese, bursting out of the top of the cake! The night continued with clowns, games and entertainment. It was definitely a convention to remember.

gamma-zeta.jpgThe 1994 year finished strong for the Gamma Zeta Chapter. When the Spring 1995 Jonquil went out, a big news release highlighted this Minnesota chapter who donated 200 or more hats per year to area shelters for Hats for Hope. As a rural outreach, they sent hats, mittens and scarves to northern Minnesota via a program in Duluth, MN. They expanded the program by sewing hundreds of ditty bags and having members collect items to fill them. The bags were then distributed to women’s shelters and transitional homes in both metro and suburban areas of Minneapolis and St. Paul, MN.

Continuing to spread the love, Marge Hammond of Beta Iota Chapter in Thomasville, NC was always available for a hug. She started her weekdays by visiting Liberty Drive Elementary School where she met the buses to hug each child and most of the teachers. She gained the name “Grandma” and was a DESA-in-north-carolina.jpgsource of love and attention for people all over town. Marge decided to establish DESA (Daughters of ESA) Chapter Alpha Epsilon. She wanted to bring the organization to Thomasville to help young children develop the same self-confidence and positive attitude ESA gave her.

Many hugs were shared at the Rocky Mountain High Convention in 1995. Try—Athalon participants loaded buses for the International Council Convention Challenge. A simple walk around the park raised $65,000 in cash and pledges for the children of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. To continue the fun, members holding beach balls walked onto the stage to give the presentation of dollars. When Terre Thomas announced ESA had raised $2,083,440 in cash and pledges for St. Jude Research Hospital members were over joyed! Their hard work continued to show when members learned their fundraising events totaled to $340,000 for Easter Seals. It was a huge success for all of our philanthropic projects.

After members watched the sunset over the beautiful Colorado Rockies on their last night no one wanted to leave. ESA decided that they are going to bring the mountains along with them in next year’s convention by creating a “Mountain of Love.” The mountain consisted of “ESA Gives $100” money esa-mountain-of-love.jpgbags. The money came from accomplishments members completed, like quitting smoking, losing weight, walking more, or even as simple as completing a small task for the day. After they finished an accomplishment, they put whatever lose change they had into a canister. Each time they reached $100, headquarters sent them a money bag. People were even more determined to accomplish their goals. By accomplishing their dreams, the children of St. Jude Research Hospital could do the same.

Once the 1996 Convention came around in the Sunshine State of Florida, money bags piled up. The “Mountain of Love” reached the all new peak of $107,000 for the children of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. It was the most ever raised during an event held at an International Council Convention.

The state ESA St. Jude Coordinators revealed the years fundraising total of $2,199,000 in cash and pledges for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. It was this convention that marked ESA’s 25 years of service to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and cumulative fundraising total of about $25 million in cash and pledges.

In the years 1997 to 2000, ESA aimed to provide more love, support and hope for children all over. Continue through the years and finish the century strong along with us by checking back in two weeks for the next Glimpse in Time post.

Written by Audrey Potter
Posted: 8/19/2019 11:30:42 AM by Mackeigan Wuest | with 0 comments


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