The 55th Annual Grosse Pointe Academy Action Auction 2023 is on May 13. It's a great way to unite as a community and participate in a silent and live auction while enjoying cocktails, hors d'oeuvres, dinner, and an after-party. All proceeds from the evening go to support the Academy's mission to nurture, challenge, and inspire its students.
Of course, pulling off a successful event takes a lot of effort, and the 2023 Action Auction co-chairs - Powell and Greg Corbett, Alexis, and Jed Elley, and Julie and Joe Kaiser - are leading the way.
Here, we learn more about the women who are selflessly volunteering their time to give back:
How many events have you co-chaired?
Powell Corbett: In addition to this one, I have co-chaired these two events:
-The Grosse Pointe Classic to benefit the renovation of the Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory at Grosse Pointe Beaumont.
-The Tau Beta Fall Market 2022 raises funds for The Children's Center of Detroit and the other charities they chose for their yearly grants.
Julie Kaiser: I have been lucky to co-chair three events.
Alexis Elley: The last large event I co-chaired was the Holley Ear Institute Celebrate America party in July 2013. It's been ten years - I guess I was due for another. 😊
How do you feel about co-chairing an event?
PC: As Mattie Stepanek [the late peace advocate and motivational speaker] once said, "Unity is strength… when there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved."
JK: I'm grateful for the opportunity to co-chair events that support growth and expansion in the lives of others. It's an honor and a blessing.
AE: Having a co-chair for large events is extremely beneficial. Having a confidant to bounce ideas off of, share the workload, and navigate obstacles is terrific.
What is your favorite part about being a co-chair?
PC: I love co-chairing events with close friends. I love learning and discovering new strengths within myself and my fantastic co-chairs along the journey. Having these co-chairs for The Grosse Pointe Academy Auction has also been very helpful so that if one of us is traveling or unable to attend a meeting, we can lean on each other. Even while working in challenging situations, we find ways to laugh a lot. We love working for such good causes together.
JK: My favorite part about being a co-chair is the excitement and energy that goes into giving. I love to see the support and am humbled by the generosity of others. We have a great community here, and the supporters have been beyond generous.
AE: My favorite part of being a co-chair is spending time with two women that I really love and admire. I also love seeing another side of how their brains work separate from being mothers, wives and friends.
What valuable lessons have you learned as a co-chair?
PC: I have learned that you truly need to carve out a lot of time of the year and/or a block of months that the event needs. It's also very important to ask for help when needed because the many people who have performed the roles before having a wealth of knowledge and are usually happy to help. Also, lean on the support teams and other committees to help with some of the decisions and tasks. Otherwise, it can get overwhelming. I have also made some great new friendships by learning to ask for help and reach out.
JK: One of the many valuable lessons I've learned so far is not to ask for help. I've found that most people want to give to the best of their ability, and it never hurts to ask.
AE: A valuable lesson that I've learned is that I hate budgets and inflation is disheartening - LOL - but all jokes aside, it's important to have goals and guidelines, to listen and think before voicing your opinion (for the most part) and being open to alternate solutions.
What should you ALWAYS do as a co-chair?
PC: You should always be grateful - grateful for peoples' support in the many ways it can be possible, whether it's a donation of time, ideas, monetary donations, items donated, services donated, or even introductions to others who can help as well! I am always blown away by how generous people are for such great causes. I'm grateful for working with these events and seeing how much people are willing to help.
JK: You should always keep an open mind and be grateful to the people involved.
AE: Communication is key when co-chairing an event. We all have our strengths and weaknesses and should tap into being on the same page creates a seamless and enjoyable experience. Also, when chairing or co-chairing any event, always be gracious and grateful for any donation, whether big or small.
What should you NEVER do as a co-chair?
PC: You should never take anyone's time and support for granted.
JK: "Never" is hard for me… well, because you never know. But I do believe you should never take others for granted.
AE: One should always expect something when it comes to charity.
How do you feel about your current co-chairing event?
PC: Fun and interesting fact - Alexis Elley and I went to The Grosse Pointe Academy together. I'm an alumnus of the school, a current parent, and I also serve on the Board of Trustees. The auction is the largest fundraiser of the year for the school. It is a rocking party, an awesome large silent auction, and a fabulous live auction! The GPA and this event are very near and dear to my heart.
JK: I'm so excited to support the school and enrich the future of the children.
AE: The Grosse Pointe Academy 55th Action Auction, which, being an alumnus of the school and current parent, is an event near and dear to my heart as well.
To buy your tickets and help support this worthwhile event, go to GPAcademy.org/Giving/Action-Auction.