By Roseanne Lewis
AT&T, Goldman Sachs and Pioneer Natural Resources joined forces Monday, April 29 to host the Dallas CASA Classic, a charity golf tournament that raised $1.8 million for abused and neglected children served by Dallas CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates).
Dallas CASA recruits, trains and supervises community volunteers who advocate for the best interests of abused and neglected children living in protective care. With the financial support of the golf tournament now in its 22nd year, Dallas CASA has expanded the agency’s reach to more children in need each year.
In 2018, Dallas provided child advocates for 3,332 Dallas County children. When the tournament began 22 years ago, Dallas CASA served 407 children.
With the ongoing support of the event, which is the largest single-day, non-PGA sponsored golf tournament in the country, Dallas CASA plans to continue growing to serve every child in need. Since the tournament’s inception in 1998, the Dallas CASA Classic has raised $19.7 million for Dallas CASA.
“To see our business partners and employees uniting together behind such a tremendous cause is truly humbling,” said Kerry Scott, vice president for reserves at Pioneer. “The most humbling part is knowing our collaboration is changing the lives of some of Dallas’ most vulnerable children.”
The tournament, which drew more than 700 golfers from around the country, was held simultaneously at Brookhaven Country Club and the Four Seasons Resort and Club Dallas at Las Colinas, with both morning and afternoon sessions.
“Dallas CASA’s ability to reach more children in Dallas each year is the direct result of the unique corporate partnership of AT&T, Goldman Sachs and Pioneer,” said Kathleen LaValle, president and CEO of Dallas CASA. “We often say our advocates are a constant in the lives of the children we serve. This tournament has been a constant for Dallas CASA, providing tremendous, consistent support year after year. The tournament has given us the courage and confidence to know we can grow.”
“Investing in the lives of Dallas’ most abused and neglected children is good not only for the children, but for our broader community as well,” said Chance Monroe, managing director of Goldman Sachs and a Dallas CASA board member. “Having partners like AT&T and Pioneer also committed to the cause has allowed our vision for this tournament to go much farther than we dreamed when the tournament started in 1998.”
“AT&T is proud to support Dallas CASA and the agency’s efforts in our community on behalf of children,” said Corey Anthony, AT&T senior vice president and chief diversity officer, chair-elect of the Dallas CASA board and a Dallas CASA volunteer advocate. “Working with Pioneer and Goldman Sachs, AT&T is grateful to know that more children will have a trained child advocate by their sides as they navigate a frightening child welfare system.”
In 2018 more than 2,000 Dallas County children were removed from unsafe homes and placed in protective care. Dallas CASA’s 1,425 trained and supervised volunteers advocated for four out of five of the more than 4,700 children in foster care last year. A Dallas CASA volunteer is often a child’s only constant, caring adult by his or her side during a frightening, uncertain time.
“I first came to Dallas CASA through the involvement of colleagues. But once I got involved, it was the children who kept me involved,” said Bob Schleckser, Dallas CASA board chair.
“Having been brought up in a safe, comfortable environment, it troubles me deeply that all children are not experiencing that same start to life. The Dallas CASA board is grateful to organizations like AT&T, Goldman Sachs and Pioneer that are willing to see a problem and take action, standing up for children who can’t stand up for themselves.”