A Letter from Ted Gavin
A Letter from Ted Gavin
Starting this letter has been impossible – I just haven’t been able to get the words started. Usually this comes pretty easily to me, but not this time. Then I sat and looked at a list of the things that we here at G/S have been doing outside of our casework – giving back to the community – and that got the engine going. I am continually amazed at what a small group of people can accomplish when they simply decide to care about something. Sometimes it’s easy – like lending out our suite at the Wells Fargo Center in Philly for an ABI Endowment fundraiser. Other times it requires money, or time, or talent. But each of those times, it inspires me to find new ways to do good things while also doing excellent work.
Since the last newsletter, Gavin/Solmonese has underwritten the cost of 250 signed and paw-tographed copies of the book Tuesday Tucks Me In: The Loyal Bond Between a Soldier and his Service Dog so that the children of active-duty service members at Fort Bliss, Texas could receive a copy from the author, Luis Carlos Montalvan (Capt. U.S. Army, Retired). Luis and his service dog Tuesday were the inspiration for the Service Dogs for Veterans Act – the first piece of legislation introduced and passed by our friend, Sen. Al Franken (D – Minn.).
We treated the residents at the Pathways PA Center for Families to a movie day out on Thanksgiving, as well as collected donations for Christmas toys, food and treats for all the child residents of the center, and slippers and robes for all of the mothers. This is a special place for us – we provide, on an ongoing basis, school supplies, baby and childrens’ clothes, toys, books, household supplies, used computers, and other necessities for women and children in transition out of crisis situations. I can’t imagine someone seeing survivors trying to escape a life of domestic violence not being compelled to do something.
We had a great time supporting Cycle for Survival, and we continue to be inspired by what our friends David and Jennifer Linn created years ago to raise money for Memorial Sloan Kettering to research orphan cancers. It became the fastest-growing cancer research fundraiser years ago thanks to David and Jen’s dedication – now, David and his family continue to grow the program each year. The hard part is that, with so many restructuring firms participating, it’s getting harder to raise as much money each year in support of Team Gavin/Solmonese – but that’s what is supposed to happen – smaller slices, bigger pie, all for a cause that impacts nearly all of us in some way.
And we get to put our work skills to use for social benefit, as well. We took on a pro bono client in February – a small private school, and did a viability assessment and turnaround plan to return the school to cash-positive operations and provide for a sound footing for the future. I’m personally grateful to Russ Silberglied of Richards, Layton & Finger in Wilmington, DE for referring the matter to us; asking someone to help save a vital community institution is probably the highest form of praise for which I could ever ask, and we’re all glad we could get involved locally and get it done. Plus, Jeremy VanEtten and I had a ton of fun on the case, and we look forward to continuing the relationship into the future. Chuck Lewis gives his time and talents to GreenDelco, the Aston (PA) Firemans Relief Fund board, and the Chichester Business Association. Meg Manning volunteers considerable amounts of her time as a child advocate in the Delaware state court system. Joe Solmonese serves on the board of one of the nation’s largest womens’ healthcare organizations and Amy Gavin serves on the local affiliate board for the same organization. And sometimes we come together in random configurations, as we will be in May, when Joseph Richman, Jeremy VanEtten and I return to play music with other industry colleagues to raise funds at Bankrupt Talent (May 11th at Le Poisson Rouge in NYC).
So, as much as I had no idea what to say, we’ve been busy engaging with our broader community and helping, outside of our case work, when and where we can. If anything defines our brand, I hope it’s our excitement and enthusiasm around engagement. We invite you to join us – we do some really great things and work with some awesome people to do them. If you’re interested in that too, we’d love to have you engaged with us.