Choose Your Team
Event Planning

Captured Event

March 21, 2007 - DPS Foundation Celebrating Success

Where: Hyatt Convention Center

When: March 21, 2007

Time: 5:30 p.m.

Ticket Prices: Starting at $125

Beneficiary: DPS Foundation

EMCEE: Ann Trujillo, Channel 7

Gala Chairperson(s): Elaine Gantz Berman and Rich Rainaldi

Honorary Chairperson(s): Governor Bill Ritter and Mayor John Hickenlooper

Committee Members: Kristin and Blair Richardson, Mariner Kemper, Adam Agron, Steve Cohen, Jack Fox, Katherine Gold

President(s): Barbara Berv

Staff: Barbara Berv, Mary Spillane, Kim Martinez, Kirstin Gerety, Tiffany Cooley, Pam Coen

Welcome: Ann Trujillo, Channel 7

Speaker: Elaine Gantz Berman, Rich Rainaldi, Governor Bill Ritter, Mayor John Hickenlooper, Michael Bennet, Bruce Benson, Barbara Berv

Sponsors: Presenting Sponsor: UMB Bank Sponsor: Comcast, Hyatt Regency Denver at Colorado Convention Center Valedictorian Sponsors: Marcy and Bruce Benson, Elaine Gantz Berman and Dr. Steve Berman, Gary Williams Energy Corporation/The Piton Foundation, Morgridge Family Foundation, Kristin and Blair Richardson, Salazar Family Foundation, Paul Radey/Monfort Family Foundation Salutatorian Sponsors: Barbara and Daniel Berv, The BTG Family Foundation, Wendy and Steve Cohen, Community Banks of Colorado, Susan Daggett and Michael Bennet, David Graham & Stubbs, FirstBank, Katherine Gold, Hogan & Hartson LLP, McClain Finlon Advertising, Susan Morrice and Alex Cranberg, Jack Overstreet, Martha Records and Rich Rainaldi, Riverfront Park Community Foundation, United Western Bank, Wells Fargo, JF Companies National Honor Society Sponsors: Sue and Harvey Allon, Marcel Arsenault and Peter Wells, Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, Erna Butler and Nancy Butler Acetta, Chevron, Denise and Warren Cohen, Colorado Business Bank, Coors Brewing Company, CRL Associates, DCP Midstream, Forest City Development, George K. Baum, HC Companies, Independence Capital Asset Partners, Jared Polis Foundation, JE Dunn Construction, John J. Huggins, Key Bank, KM Consessions, Latin American Educational Foundation, Mary Pat Link and John Strohm, Mr. and Mrs. P. Scott Lowery, Carole and Ed McVaney, Meadow Gold Dairies, Cindy and Federico Pena, Princeton Review, Proserve, Qwest Communication, Sage Hospitality Resources, Stifel Nicolaus Honor Roll Sponsors: The Bank of New York Trust Co., Bookhardt & O'Toole, Steve and Robin Chotin/The Chotin Family Foundation, Cisco Systems, City and County of Denver, CollegeInvest, College Summit, Continuum Partners, Corona Research, Daniels Fund, Denver Board of Realtors/Denver Metro Commercial Association of Realtors, Denver Classroom Teachers Association, Denver Health Foundation, Denver Kids, DPS Instructional Superintendents, East High Angel Foundation, EKS&H, El Pomar Foundation, Mary and Don Elliman, First Community Bank, First Data Corporation, Foundation for Educational Excellence, The Fox Company, Frontier Airlines, Health Quest International Inc./Triton Investoment Company, Western Capital Partners, Holland & Hart, Intertech Plastics, Intuitive Captive Solutions, The Jefferson Foundation, Kaiser Permanente, Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell, The Klapper First/Connections Academy/GBSM, Klipp Architects, Kutak Rock, Anabel and Jerry McHugh, MediaNews Group Interactive, Mellon Private Wealth Management, Merchants Mortgage and Trust Corp., Mile High United Way, National CineMedia, Theresa Pena and Mathew Chavkin, Piper Jaffray & Co/Sherman & Howard, Schenkein/Bank of Choice, School House Communications, Semple MIller Mooney & Farrington, Sinton Daisy, St. Charles Capital, Stapleton Foundation, Starz Entertainment Group, University of Colorado Foundation, University of Denver, Vectra Bank of Colorado, Wagner Equipment COmpany, Kristin and Bill Waters, Western Daisy Council, Westerra Credit Union, Xcel Energy, Xjet Club

Menu: Crisp seasonal greens with blue cheese crumbles, grilled apples, figs and candied pecans with pomegranate vinaigrette, coffee smoked beef filet with port wine demi glaze, potatoes dauphanois, roasted Vegetable Medley, Frangelico Cappuccino in a Chocolate Apple with Cinnamon Froth and Caramel Sauce

Attendance: 1,100

Attire: Cocktail


Board of Directors: Bruce Benson, Cathey Finlon, Elaine Gantz Berman, Noel Ginsburg, Leslie Mitchell, Bruce Hoyt, Francisco Garcia, Mariner Kemper, Michael Bennet, Carrie Morgridge, Barbara Berv, Rich Rainaldi, Scott Binder, Kristin Richardson, Joe Blake, Lola Salazar, Linda Childears, Mark Smith, Mike Durkin, Thomas Strickland, Cole Finegan, Ronald Williams

Blacktie Photos by: Shawna Robbins

 Margaret Clinkscales, left, Bill Abbey, Myrella Goff, Deb Graham
Margaret Clinkscales, left, Bill Abbey, Myrella Goff, Deb Graham

As the sun was setting on the first full day of spring in Denver, the excitement was just getting started at the Hyatt Regency Convention Center. Guests were greeted by eager Denver Public School students as they entered the cocktail reception of the Annual Denver Public Schools Foundation celebration.

The sound of pounding African drums and teenage girls cheering filled the reception area. While people were winding down from a busy day at work, they were entertained by a group of children from Lowry Elementary School, who performed to authentic African music. In addition, the cheerleading squad from Kunsmiller Middle School was on hand to add some spirit to the crowd and keep things lively.

Also during the cocktail reception, guests got the opportunity to bid on some amazing auction items:
MTV Movie Awards: Travel to Los Angeles for one of the most star-studded events of the year, and get to sit among the stars for the evening.
Hollywood Package with Jay Leno: Be a member of the studio audience at The Tonight Show.
Colorado Ski Extravangaze: Escape to a luxurious private home in Breckenridge and enjoy private ski lessons from US World Cup Mogul Team Head Coach, Scott Rawles.
Viva Las Vegas and Elton John: See Elton John LIVE at Caesar’s Palace.
Bighorn Golf Club Getaway: The chance to golf at an internationally acclaimed golf course in Palm Desert, California.

Once the doors opened to the ballroom, guests saw Spring-inspired tables with beautiful Gerber daisy centerpieces. Before more people had the opportunity to sit down, there was a rumble from the foyer. It gradually got louder until the entire ballroom was vibrating with the beat of the Montbello High School drum line. The group of boys made their way around the perimeter of the room before taking their place on the stage. These students got the guests on their feet and entertained everyone.

After the drum line left the room, the Montbello High School Women’s Honor Platoon took to the stage. These girls are not only part of an award winning honor platoon, but they are also academic stars at their school. Their performance was perfectly in step with each other and they demonstrated to the crowd why they were award winners.

The Honor Platoon then presented the Colors and students from North High School performed the Star Spangled Banner. Ann Trujillo then took to the stage to kick off the evening’s presentation. The gala co-chairs, Elaine Gantz Berman and Rich Rainaldi, thanked everyone for their support of the DPS Foundation and for attending the evening’s festivities. Governor Bill Ritter than spoke about his commitment to Colorado and Denver’s education system and the students that it services, mentioning his plan to reduce the drop-out rate. He understands that the future of our state is in the hands of those in school now and that we need to do everything we can in order to keep them there and graduate.

Also on hand for the evening were Mayor John Hickenlooper, Michael Bennet--DPS Superintendent, Bruce Benson--DPS Foundation board chair and Barbara Berv, DPS Foundation President & CEO.

The evening was filled with celebration over the past accomplishments of the DPS Foundation, as well as hope and anticipation over what the Foundation will be accomplishing in the future.

Denver Public Schools Foundation serves as the primary ‘portal of philanthropy’ for the district by raising and managing funds in support of the district’s ambitious plan to improve student achievement. Their areas of funding are based on the directive of district leadership and what they determine to be the top educational priorities in need of additional support. Whether it’s supporting new teachers, a new science curriculum, principal professional development, after-school programs, individual school needs, or connecting businesses with schools, they strive to build successful partnerships between their donor community and the district. For more information, visit

See More Past Events