Former New York Giant, Howard Cross, Among The THRIVE Network Honorees
Many words come to mind when reflecting upon last evening’s People who THRIVE Cocktail Fundraiser held at Ainsworth Park in New York City; beautiful, inspiring, uplifting, amazing, and impressive.
Beautiful venue adorned with candles, dim lighting, and open floor-t0-ceiling windows which allowed the warm Indian summer air to breeze through. Inspiring as the proceeds benefited The THRIVE Network, where all their services aim for the same goal: “enhancing the lives of those in need and helping their consumers reach their individual potential, in their own way and on their own time.” Uplifting as the night presented seven individuals with the People Who THRIVE Award for their exemplary leadership and humanitarianism in the NYC community. Amazing as everyone in attendance represented different organizations, companies, and backgrounds, but all agreed upon the importance of bringing awareness to giving back to the community and helping those in need. Impressive in the smoothness of event execution with Indra Public Relations running the show from start to finish and Lamb Financial Group making the event possible as the lead sponsor.
Let’s take a deeper look at some of the main individuals here. First and foremost, there is THRIVE Network CEO Charles Archer. Author, lawyer, entrepreneur, co-founder, and speaker. He has written the Everybody Paddles book compilations (which everyone in attendance at the event received the most recent version), has presented a Tedx Talk “The Friendship Clause”, and has visited the White House as a black man, with a president of color, which was overwhelming to say the least.
Archer has been honored for all of his efforts numerous times before, but last night, it was his turn to honor seven outstanding people: Tony Richardson – 3x Pro Bowler & 2x Second-Team, Howard Cross – New York Giants Super Bowl Champion, Hassan Whiteside – Miami Heat Center, Nadine Wright-Arbubakrr – Founder, Nassan’s Place, Mindy Scheier – Founder of Runway of Dreams, Glenn E. Martin – Founder & President of JustLeadershipUSA, and Danielle Moss Lee – CEO, YWCA.
Archer on honoring these individuals, “It winds up being an opportunity to celebrate other people. What we have done at the THRIVE Network over 20 years is monumental. A community based organization start by someone from Brooklyn, servicing Brooklyn, I am now in a position where I can say people like Glenn Martin, who is doing criminal justice reform, is important. Someone like Mindy and Runway of Dreams, putting people on the runways with disabilities. Honoring people like Tony Richardson, or Howard Cross and what they do for the community. It’s such a rewarding opportunity for me to be in a position where it’s no longer just about me, and THRIVE, it winds up being about other people.”
The first person I spoke to last evening was Howard Cross, NY Giants Super Bowl Champion, and current sideline reporter for the Giants on their radio broadcast. With a quiet start to the evening, Howard was casually sipping a cocktail leaning against a bar table in the middle of the event space. Standing at 6’5”, you can’t really miss him. What I have noticed is that Mr. Cross does not have his own foundation, which you see these days a lot of athletes, current and former, have created their own non-profits to help raise money and awareness for whatever gets them going. Howard just supports a handful of already established foundations, which is why he was being honored with an award last night.
“I do stand-up, I do charities, I do auctions, I emcee events. I try to stick with charities that are closer to the heart, after having kids myself, I stuck around with Autism Speaks, juvenile diabetes research, and a host of other children’s charities, The Valerie Fund, anything to help kids get better,” explained Cross.
This is what he is good at. Having your own foundation creates a responsibility to raise the money and then decide who to give to, being good at what Cross is good at, he can pretty much get into wherever he needs to, so he can support the charities that matter to him. Well done, Mr. Cross.
Erik Coleman, nine-year NFL veteran, SNY NY Jets analyst, Director of Chapter Relations for the NFL Alumni, Sirius XM radio host, and THRIVE Network Ambassador, was in attendance last night with his wife, Sabrina Coleman. Coleman is a busy man, but always makes time for the causes that are near and dear to his heart.
“As an ambassador I promote what THRIVE does to the World, to the masses,” said the former Jets defensive back. “As a former athlete and current analyst I have a big platform. It’s great to use that platform to promote something good. This is their 20th anniversary, they have been helping families and people with disabilities live normal lives. I am very proud to be a part of it.”
After cocktail hour, the honorees were given the chance once given their awards to speak to all in attendance. I mentioned before that inspiring was a main thought about last night. That is actually an understatement given what these individuals included in their words that came straight from the heart.
This event wouldn’t have been possible without the support from Lamb Financial Group, insurance designed for human service organizations.
“Charles is a young leader in the non-profit field, a fantastic leader,” said CEO of Lamb Financial, Josh Lamberg. “We’re really happy to support Charles and his organization. He is a magnetic and charismatic guy. We know they are very effective. The support we give here, more of the money goes to consumer services.”
The THRIVE Network will continue to grow, and will continue to honor the people that show their commitment to making less fortunate individuals lives better, in any way that they can. They will continue to raise funds and bring people in that support the mission of the Network, enriching the souls of individuals to help them reach their full potential.
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