Event Review: Texas Trailblazer Awards Luncheon
© The Flash List | September 19, 2012
Far from being just a delicious luncheon at the city's new Omni Hotel in downtown Dallas, the 2012 Texas Trailblazer Awards presentation was a discussion about the impact of physical abuse within the families of our community and an opportunity to “take this conversation and make it part of our daily lives.”
Don McPherson (former pro football player turned social activist) inspired a sold-out crowd of social workers, volunteers, philanthropists, and supporters on Wednesday afternoon as he encouraged individuals to become part of a solution that breaks the cycle of "men's violence against women." Celebrating the achievements of The Family Place and raising funds to support the life-saving services that the organization provides to female victims of domestic violence along with their innocent children, McPherson’s straightforward message confronted cultural traditions, social mores, and even racism, sexism, and misogyny.
Having been trained as a young boy to be tough, “don’t cry,” and never “throw like a girl,” Don found two problems with the conventional message to “man up.” First, he asserts that “man responds to violence with more violence”; and secondly, the message “suggests that women are ‘less than.’” To an audience in overwhelming agreement, he stated frankly, “I’m not going to make my son better by degrading my daughter.”
Through this annual Texas Trailblazer Awards program, The Family Place honors individuals who lead by example to “create positive change and contribute to the quality of life in our community.” At this year's program, emceed by Brendan Higgins, The Family Place Executive Director Paige Flink awarded recipients which included Liz Minyard and Kathryn Hall (Texas Trailblazer), Dr. Kenneth Cooper (Man of Influence), Lynn Goldstein (Real-Life Hero), and Verizon (The Family Place Advocacy Award). The event was co-chaired by Dr. Loc and Anh Trieu along with Lloyd and Amanda Ward. Honorary Chairs Diane and Daryl Johnston were also in attendance.
To find out how you can partner with The Family Place in their mission to eliminate family violence, visit them online at http://www.familyplace.org.