April 4, 2021 – Tommy Nobis Center, a Marietta-based nonprofit that helps individuals with disabilities enter or return to employment, hosted its 23rd annual Galaxy of Stars event virtually on Friday, April 23, 2021 and raised over $235,000 – more than any other previously held Galaxy of Stars event.
The event brought together corporate leaders, community supporters and friends to honor the impact of Tommy Nobis Center’s programs, celebrate its participants and raise much needed funds to support ongoing operations.
This year’s Galaxy of Stars theme was Stars Among Us. Master of Ceremonies, WSB-TV’s Action News Anchor Justin Farmer, kicked off the event followed by a warm welcome from several TNC Stars. The program featured Stars Among Us-Tommy Nobis Center program participants who have achieved career success.
“This year’s event was incredibly meaningful,” said CEO Dave Ward. “It is always inspiring to celebrate the amazing success of our program participants and community champions.”
Tommy Nobis Center presented four awards to recognize the hard work and dedication of outstanding individuals who have contributed greatly to building inclusive communities where employment success is possible.
The award winners included:
Tommy Nobis Rising Star Award – Awarded to Destiny Adamson, a program participant who with the support of Tommy Nobis Center landed her first job. In her acceptance speech, she told of her journey to employment and what it means to her to have a job. She is also a student at Chattahoochee Tech pursuing a degree in Criminal Justice. Destiny concluded the program by reciting her original poem, The Legendary Dreamer.
Community Champion Award – Awarded to Jay Cunningham, owner and president of Superior Plumbing who in addition to being a successful businessman for over 30 years has given back to the community in countless ways through his dedication to many endeavors and causes. For the past eight years, he has administered the Superior Plumbing KIDS Club with a membership of over 300 special needs students who are given the opportunity to attend all types of fun events.
Family Member Advocate Award – Awarded to Lucy Cusick who not only provided fierce advocacy for her own son, Josh who was born with Cerebral Palsy, but also provided support to thousands of families during her 25 years as Executive Director of FOCUS + Fragile Kids. Josh, who lives independently and works part-time at a company that installs wheelchair lifts in vans, joined Lucy as she accepted the award.
Lifetime Achievement Award – Awarded to Dr. Ike Reighard, President & CEO of MUST Ministries and Senior Pastor of Piedmont Church, who has devoted his life to helping people exchange ordinary living for an extraordinary life. For almost five decades, he has brought insight, inspiration and humor to countless people as pastor, teacher, corporate executive, nonprofit leader, author, and motivational speaker. The organizations Ike leads are known for tangibly meeting the most pressing needs of the most vulnerable among us.
The event was sponsored by Cobb EMC Community Foundation, WSB-TV, Wellstar Health System, and the Atlanta Falcons. A recording of the event can be viewed at here.