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The Announcement Party for the S.M. Wright Foundation’s 23rd Annual Christmas in the Park was hosted by Heather and Ray Washburne in the Mockingbird Room in Highland Park Village.
Joining the Washburnes was their daughter, Margot, and Vicki and Dulany Howland. Volunteering with Christmas in the Park has been a longtime family tradition for their family. Each year, they help hand out Christmas gifts and many other items to families in need at the Christmas in the Park celebration at the Automobile Building in Fair Park.
Also joining in the Announcement were Host Team members and SM’s family, his brother Calvin Wright and his mother, Debra Wright and many more. Cullum Clark is board chair.
Christmas in the Park has grown from serving fewer than 200 underprivileged children in 1998 to assisting more than 25,000 less fortunate Dallas residents in 2020. Given the current economic climate, continually rising inflation, and increasing income inequality, even more families will line up this year in hopes of receiving services from the S.M. Wright Foundation.
As Dallas’ largest holiday charity event, Christmas in the Park can meet great needs in our city — but not without corporate and individual sponsors. Together, we can raise enough funds through this year’s event to ensure that sufficient food, clothing, toys, household items and furniture are available to those who need them most. This special event plays host to nearly 1,800 volunteers who share the holiday season with their community.
The event on Saturday, December 18, 2021 is not a gala-type of event where the community can purchase tickets to attend. This event distributes the items above to families in need who have pre-registered and is made possible by donors who fund Christmas for thousands of families in our metro area. The community can help with donations to the S.M. Wright Foundation that go directly towards Christmas in the Park. Find out more at www.smwrightfoundation.org or www.christmasatfairpark.com
Host Team: S.M. Wright ll, Co-Founder; Debra Wright, Co-Founder; Calvin Wright, Co-Founder; Heather and Ray Washburne, Honorary Event Chairs; Nita and Cullum Clark, Foundation Board Chair.
Event Co-Chairs: Allie Beth and Pierce Allman; Julie and Darren Blanton; Deni and Kevin Bryant; Jacki and Doug Deason; Ola and Randall Fojtasek; Suzanne and Michael Grishman; Tavia and Clark Hunt; Brooke and Jeff Jackson; Natalie and Mike McGuire; Brenda and Larry North; Chris and Joe Popolo; Michael Watson; Jimmy Westcott; John Willding.
Foundation Board of Directors: Debra Wright, Founder and Chairwoman Emeritus; Cullum Clark, Board Chairman; S.M. Wright II, Co-Founder, President and CEO; Pierce Allman, Vice Chairman; Chris Lalonde, Secretary; Darren Blanton; Ernest Beecherl; Larry North; Calvin Wright; Michael Watson and John Collins, General Counsel.
About The S.M. Wright Foundation:
Mission: The S.M. Wright Foundation is a nonprofit organization that provides support and stability to inner-city, underprivileged children and less fortunate families through hunger relief, educational support, health promotion, social service assistance and economic empowerment. Our goals are to move families from dependency to self-sufficiency and to restore stability to families and the community.
About: The S.M. Wright Foundation was founded in 1998 by S.M. Wright II and this year is celebrating its 23rd year. As a visionary, CEO Wright, his family, and trusted friends established the S.M. Wright Foundation as a nonprofit organization with a mission of providing support and stability to inner city, underprivileged children and less fortunate families through hunger relief, educational support, health and social service assistance and economic empowerment. The mission of the S.M. Wright Foundation is to move these families from a position of dependency to self-sufficiency and to restore stability to families and the community.
With an organization once established to serve primarily the South Dallas Community, the S.M. Wright Foundation has seen exponential growth and has seen its clientele begin to come from all areas of the Dallas metropolis. By providing a supporting role of guidance to our clients in areas for race relations, hunger relief, community involvement and events, economic development, social assistance programs benefiting the low-social economic families, and the implementation of several new educational programs the S.M. Wright Foundation is helping build a solid foundation and a sense of pride that allows our clients to successfully transition to that position of self-sufficiency. As a result, five essential programs were developed as pillars of success to facilitate the great transition of our clients.
The S. M. Wright Foundation helps many families in need, through its community program centers, the South Dallas Community Food Center, its South Dallas Community Resource Center, the Community Furniture Bank, the Dallas Financial Literacy and Tutoring Center, its Beds for Kids Center and the Annual Christmas at Fair Park event. www.smwrightfoundation.org and http://www.christmasatfairpark.com/
Photos by Rob Wythe/Wythe Portrait Studio