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2022 Gala Celebrates Communities of Belonging & the Power of Creating Your Own Narrative

On Tuesday, May 24, several hundred guests gathered at 583 Park for NYC Outward Bound Schools’ 2022 Gala — the organization’s first in-person Gala in over two years.

The event honored David C. Banks, Chancellor, NYC Department of Education, and Gregory Worrell, Senior Consultant: Education, Scholastic Inc., and was led by two network school students — Yushan Li, a 12th grader at Leaders, and Marcus Hopper, a 12th grader at West End Secondary School.

In addition to student speeches, the evening featured an inspiring panel discussion with Banks, Worrell and NYC Outward Bound Schools CEO Vanessa Rodriguez, and a video presentation on Crew Initiative. Dana Nelson, a 12th grade humanities teacher at Leaders, received the annual R. Gaynor McCown Excellence in Teaching Award.

To wrap up the night, a pledge drive led by MELS alumnus and NYC Outward Bound Schools Human Resources Associate Eric Rios, succeeded in raising more than $75,000 in 10 minutes. In total, the spring Gala campaign raised more than $1.18 million to go toward vital programming for NYC Outward Bound’s schools, students and educators.

Many thanks to our 2022 Gala Chairs and Vice Chairs!


Carole & Norm Barham

Beth Carney & Josh Struzziery

Vicki & David Foley

Jeffrey R. Gural, GFP Real Estate

Alphonse Lembo

Pamela & Gifford Miller

Nancy & Burt Staniar

Arthur Sulzberger, Jr.

Ginger & Geoff Worden

Vice Chairs

Patricia L. Francy

LaRue Gibson/LRG Wealth Advisors

Lisa Hernandez Gioia & Eric Gioia

Jane Greenman

Timothy Greensfelder & Sari Granat

Bonnie & Brad Klein

Jonathan Miller, Miller Ryan, LLC

Lisa Moran & Scott Ainsbury

Amanda Vaughn

Sue & Ravi Yadav

Watch the speeches, videos and panel from our 2022 Gala:

Student Speaker, Yushan Li:

Student Speaker, Marcus Hopper:

Honoree Panel:

Alumnus Speaker, Eric Rios:

Gaynor McCown Award Winner, Dana Nelson:

NYC Outward Bound Schools’ Crew Initiative:

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