Wesley Woods Honors Iconic Atlanta Leaders & Raises Record Funds
The Foundation of Wesley Woods is announcing that this year’s Heroes, Saints & Legends gala, held recently at Flourish in Buckhead, was the most successful gala event presented by the organization in 10 years. The 29th annual awards ceremony celebrated four prominent Georgians who transform lives through a lifetime commitment to service and devotion to the community.
A sellout crowd of over 330 people attended the event commending the accomplishments of the 2018 honorees. Heroes, Saints & Legends raised a record-setting $ 354,478 for Wesley Woods’ ministry, which serves over 1,800 older adults annually. On the night of the event alone, supporters donated over $60,000 to support the organization.
This year’s awards recipients were:
Mr. Merritt Steed Bond – banking industry leader and philanthropist
Recognized for his commitment to addressing the challenges facing vulnerable older adults through connecting caring people in the community to vital ministries of The North Georgia Conference of The United Methodist Church.
Mr. Edward J. “Jack” Hardin – attorney and a founding partner of ROGERS & HARDIN
Recognized for his commitment to solving homelessness, poverty, and health issues for the underprivileged while being an advocate for legal aid access to all.
Rev. Dr. Joseph E. Lowery – Civil rights leader, social activist and United Methodist pastor
Dr. Evelyn G. Lowery (deceased) – Civil rights leader and social activist
Recognized for their commitment to social justice, civil rights, and the use of nonviolent methods to advance change while ministering to the spiritual needs of the oppressed.
“I’m grateful that whoever makes these selections at the Foundation of Wesley Woods thinks I’m entitled to have my name associated with Rev. Lowery, Merritt Bond and all of the other great people who have received this award,” said Edward J. “Jack” Hardin, a Heroes, Saints & Legends honoree. “As much as I enjoy all of this recognition I recognize it is about the several hundred agencies and the several thousand people who are out there every day with diligence and compassion, addressing the needs of people who are struggling with homelessness, mental disabilities, physical disabilities, substance dependencies and all the other complications of crushing and undeserved intergenerational poverty. I’m proud to be here among all of you supporting Wesley Woods.”
“I would say that, in my book, the Heroes, Saints & Legends are the 1,800 Wesley Woods residents at our communities who each day get up with a smile on their face and a positive outlook on life,” said Merritt Steed Bond, a Heroes, Saints & Legends honoree. “It also includes the 285 employees who each day look after our residents, serving with kindness and humor. Ladies and gentlemen, you are our Heroes, Saints & Legends for giving us your time tonight — and your money.”
“I want to give my appreciation to Wesley Woods, a good Methodist institution, for the award they are giving me and my wife,” said the Rev. Dr. Joseph E. Lowery, a Heroes, Saints & Legends honoree. “I’m sorry Evelyn won’t be here to get it, but I’ll pass it on to her because we talk often.”
“This year’s Heroes, Saints & Legends gala gave us a wonderful opportunity to recognize the commitment of our honorees to improving the lives of others,” said Tracy Crump, president & CEO of the Foundation of Wesley Woods. “Each one of these admirable yet humble leaders has had a tremendous impact on metro Atlanta. It was gratifying to have such strong community support as we celebrated our honorees and thanked them for their tireless work to lift up others, especially the underserved and marginalized, and for making possible the life-changing work of Wesley Woods.”
Donations in support of the mission of Wesley Woods may be made today at https://www.foundationofwesleywoods.org/donate. Video highlights, photos and information on the 2018 honorees from the evening are available online at https://www.foundationofwesleywoods.org/events/heroes-saints-legends/
Headquartered in Atlanta, Wesley Woods offers housing and supportive services for older adults throughout North Georgia. More than 1,800 older adults, 75 percent of whom need financial assistance and over one-third of whom live below the poverty line, are served annually in Wesley Woods residential communities, primarily in independent living settings.
About the Foundation of Wesley Woods
The Foundation of Wesley Woods is where caring people give so everyone can age with dignity. It serves as the connection point between the generosity of supporters in the community and the practical, life-changing work of Wesley Woods. Through the philanthropic support of our generous community, older adults of all income levels have a caring community and live thriving lives full of independence and contribution. Through the Foundation, significant benevolence care is extended to those individuals who have outlived their financial resources in order that they may remain in their homes.
About Wesley Woods Senior Living
Wesley Woods Senior Living supports healthy aging by helping older adults live independently longer, with a higher quality of life, via resident-centered communities. Founded in 1954 with the mission to assure all older adults age with grace, dignity and purpose, Wesley Woods provides safe, affordable residential housing and support services for older adults throughout North Georgia. It operates 10 residential communities, including five HUD communities, in Atlanta, Augusta, Athens, Blairsville, Roswell and Newnan. More than 1,800 older adults, 75% of whom will need financial assistance and over 40% of which live below the poverty line, are served annually in Wesley Woods residential communities, primarily in independent living settings. Some communities also include a continuum of care, which includes independent living services, assisted living services, memory care and skilled nursing care.
For additional information, please visit https://www.foundationofwesleywoods.org or follow the Foundation of Wesley Woods at www.facebook.com/WesleyWoodsGA, www.Twitter.com/WesleyWoodsGA and www.Instagram.com/WesleyWoodsGA.
About Heroes, Saints & Legends
Since 1990, Heroes, Saints & Legends has honored individuals who through a lifetime commitment to philanthropy, volunteerism and devotion to the community have transformed lives. Heroes, Saints & Legends is noteworthy for both honoring community leaders and for raising awareness around the challenges many older adults face, and how we can work together to ensure all seniors across North Georgia live independently longer, with a higher quality of life.
Funds raised through Heroes, Saints & Legends benefit the ministry of the Foundation of Wesley Woods. Through the Foundation, caring supporters alleviate poverty and homelessness for the older adults living at Wesley Woods so they can age with grace, dignity and purpose.