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September 20, 2011 - The Roast of Kelly Brough

What: Colorado I Have A Dream Foundation annual roast and fundraiser

Where: Hyatt Regency Denver at the Colorado Convention Center

When: Wednesday, September 20, 2011

Time: 5:30 p.m.

Ticket Prices: $300

Beneficiary: Colorado “I Have A Dream”® Foundation

Mistress of Ceremonies: Tamara Banks

Honoree(s): Kelly Brough

Co-Chair(s): David and Julia Simon

Executive Director: Mary Hanewall

Committee Members: Steering Committee: Rob and Amy Alvarado, Peter Calamari, Rob Cohen Leslie Ginsburg, Steve Kaplan, Leigh Sinclair; Corporate Table Ticket Committee Co-Chairs: Leanna Clark, Steve Kaplan; Individual Ticket Committee Chair: Trevor Emery; Ticket Committee: Justin Ball, Steve Demby, Cole Finegan, Doug Jones, Bill Lindsay, Bob Loebs, Rich Rainaldi, Martha Records, Hassan Salem, Eric Sondermanns, Loan Vo, Rusty Wehner and Judy & Dick Weill

Staff: Amy Farnan, Director of Advancement

Catering: Hyatt Regency

Attendance: 675

Board of Directors: Rusty Wehner, President; Trevor J. Emery, Vice President; Cherrelyn A. Napue, Secretary; David A. Simon, Treasurer; Phillip Anthony Washington, Past President; Rob L. Alvarado, Douglas A. Andrews, Justin W. Ball, Tamara Banks, Jacqueline Berardini, Deborah Brackney, Peter Calamari, Allan Cohen PsyD., Robert L. Cohen, Tomago Collins, Emily Curray, Steve Demby, Anne Edgar, George J. Flanders, Leslie Ginsburg, Tracy Huggins, Sonny Jackson, Michael Johnston, Stephen H. Kaplan, Robert L. Loeb Jr, Councilman Paul D. López, John Mastro, Anabel C. McHugh, Oscar M. Olivas, Rich Rainaldi, Chris Romer, Peter Sherman, Leigh Sinclair, Eric Sondermann, Loan Vo, Richard Weill and Antwan Wilson

Blacktie Photos by: Marcelo Mainzer

 Dreamer mentor Marius Finch, left, with dreamer and event co-host Hayelom Fitsum, Foundation Treasurer David Simon and Rusty Wehner, foundation president
Dreamer mentor Marius Finch, left, with dreamer and event co-host Hayelom Fitsum, Foundation Treasurer David Simon and Rusty Wehner, foundation president

"A tradition is a thing that has gained respect with continued and diligent practice."

On Wednesday, September 20, the Colorado I Have a Dream Foundation again took on the difficult task of choosing a lucky Denver luminary to be roasted for the 9th year of this honored tradition.
This year’s recipient of “gentle” barbs was Kelly Brough, President and CEO of the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce. Among Kelly’s many accomplishments, she served as chief of staff for the City and County of Denver, deputy chief of staff and director of Denver Office of Accountability and Reform. Kelly was the first female director of human resources for the City and County of Denver, and mom of two beautiful daughters. Kelly Brough serves the city of Denver and the state of Colorado with grace, tenacity and almost limitless energy.
Laughter was the main course of the evening and the first to serve up a heaping helping was Hayelom Fitsum. Hayelom, a 7th grader at the Denver School of Science and Technology and a Dreamer in the Denver Active 20/30 class of 2017, was chosen as Dreamer emcee for his showmanship and dedication to the I Have a Dream program.
Tamara Banks, Emmy award winning journalist and I Have a Dream board member was the “official” roast event emcee, although she had to bring all her talents to bear in not letting Hayelom steal the show. Speaking on behalf of the I Have a Dream Foundation board, Rusty Wehner, board president, gave his thanks to all the people who work so hard to make I Have a Dream possible.  
In addition to the roast, I Have a Dream took the opportunity to honor Robert “Bob” Hochstadt for more then a decade of service to Dreamers by awarding him the Jerome P. and Anabel C. McHugh award. Denver Mayor Michael Hancock made the award, which is granted to people who have demonstrated outstanding efforts in leveling the playing field in education in Colorado. Also honored was Simfoni Crowley with the McHugh Award for Scholarship, Simfoni was not able to attend the event because she was dedicating her time to her education.
Demonstrating his legendary comedic abilities, Governor John Hickenlooper began the roast, via videotape in listing some of Kelly Brough's accomplishments. He was interrupted several times by perfectionist Kelly, sending texts to make sure he “said it right.”
Official roaster Cole Finegan, who served on the board of the Dream Foundation for over a decade, and is a long time friend and colleague of Kelly Brough, was chosen to serve up the main course, lovingly lambasting Kelly for everything from her small town Montana roots to her renown collection of shoes to the flamboyant and frank way she has done her many jobs. A video with Kelly’s friends, daughters and co-workers adding their anecdotes, at Kelly’s expense, was also part of the fun.
When it was Kelly Brough’s time at the microphone showed she could give as good as she gets by beginning her rebuff with “I was told you should never follow a rock star, and thank God I didn’t," referring to her following Cole Finnegan’s position on the Hickenlooper administration staff. In reference to the shoe fetish, she offered to donate a shoe-full of champagne as an auction item to raise funds for I Have a Dream.
The evening was hilarious, but each speaker finished by adding their admiration and inspiration created by the work of The Colorado I Have a Dream Foundation in helping disadvantage children earn the invaluable gift of an education.

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