Fort Bend Y Receives $10,000 Check 2015 GEMS event contribution

By Elsa Maxey
elsa@fortbendstar.com

(l-r) 2015 Fort Bend GEMS, Don Kerstetter, Fort Bend County Judge Bob Hebert and Steve Onstad present Y Health Living Director Sharon Hilburn with a $10,000 check to assist the local Fort Bend YMCA.  The annual fundraiser honors philanthropy and supports a worthy non-profit community organization and is organized by Patti Parish-Kaminski (right) of Fort Bend Focus Media and absolutely!focus media.    (Submitted photo)

(l-r) 2015 Fort Bend GEMS, Don Kerstetter, Fort Bend County Judge Bob Hebert and Steve Onstad present Y Health Living Director Sharon Hilburn with a $10,000 check to assist the local Fort Bend YMCA. The annual fundraiser honors philanthropy and supports a worthy non-profit community organization and is organized by Patti Parish-Kaminski (right) of Fort Bend Focus Media and absolutely!focus media.
(Submitted photo)

In honoring the three 2015 GEMS (Generous Enthusiastic Men Serving) of Fort Bend, Fort Bend Focus Media and absolutely!focus media are among the community’s stands outs meriting special recognition for spearheading this fall’s event benefitting the Fort Bend YMCA.. The funds generated from Focus’ annual GEMS fundraiser this year from the proceeds of the casino chip sales and auction culminated with the recent presentation of a $10,000 check. At an intimate gathering on December 10th, Health Living Director Sharon Hilburn accepted the check on behalf of the local Y.

In attendance at the ceremony were this year’s GEMS, Sugar Land Classic Chevrolet’s Don Kerstetter, Fort Bend County Judge Bob Hebert and Renowned BBQ Man Steve Onstad, joined by past GEMS and JEWELS along with supporting sponsors and special guests at Onstad’s and Susan Cannata’s S&S Steaks and Spirits in Richmond.

Overall, the Y will have received $18,585 as the total amount from the GEMS fundraiser with the $10,000 check representing the amount generated from the evening event at Safari Texas in October, advises absolutely!focusmedia Managing Editor Sarah Bearden. As many are already aware, this year’s recipient, the Y, is regarded as a cause-driven organization for youth development, healthy living and social responsibility.

Last year, Texana’s CEO George Patterson accepted a GEMS event check amounting to over $15,000 going towards enhancing the services at the Children’s Center for Autism in Sugar Land. Texana Center, whose Chairman of the Board is retired Fort Bend County Clerk Dianne Wilson, provides services to persons in Fort Bend, Austin, Colorado, Matagorda, Waller and Wharton Counties with one of its facilities serving all of Texas.

GEMS’ kickoff, the first year fundraiser, benefitted non-profit AccessHealth, dedicated to providing integrated health care services in Fort Bend. AccessHealth, formerly Fort Bend Family Health Center, is headed by CEO Carol Edwards and this year celebrated its 40th year.

Focus principal Patti Parish-Kaminski said that supporting community organizations is an important part of the magazines’ mission given that it’s their own community focus. In accordance with the purpose of the GEMS of Fort Bend event, its intent is aimed at honoring philanthropy and also supporting a worthy non-profit community organization each year.

The 2015 GEMS fundraiser represents the third annual event, and each year it honors three dedicated men whose contributions are credited for making the community an extraordinary place to live.

The 2013 GEMS previously honored are the late Carl Favre, Joe M. Gurecky, and S. Scott West. Last year, the 2014 GEMS in the limelight were Neil Banfield, Robert C. Brown, III; and James D. Rice.

The Fort Bend Star Salutes the Community’s generosity!

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