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2015 – Off to a Great Start!

I am excited to report that 2015 is off to a great start.  Both the January and February meetings brought the young professional community together via a great turnout by members and guests.  The after-meeting dinners have been reborn, as the brainchild of Board Member Beth James, and enjoyed excelled turnout as well, thanks to the planning of Board Member Marissa Ponzi.  YPA continued the momentum, through the leadership of Board Member Summer Bell, by holding a “Cards and Cocktails” networking event at the T-Bonz in Evans on February 26th (pictures below).

Community outreach has been re-energized through the excellent work of Board Member Bryn Towner, and the efforts of Vice-President Jessica Haskins and Board Member Anna Reeves.  Bryn, Jessica, and Anna were instrumental in organizing YPA’s January Wine Tasting at new local business 706 Home, which was attended by more than 60 people.  The wine tasting resulted in a $700 donation to the Gertrude Herbert Institute of Art for use in GHIA’s mission, including providing free visual arts instruction to Richmond County students that do not have formal art instruction and otherwise would not receive any art instruction.  GHIA’s outreach programs educate students bound by social and financial constraints and allow them to participate in positive cultural after-school and in-school activities where they experience success.

Through Bryn’s initiative, YPA is also emphasizing the “service” portion of Community Outreach.  In addition to the wine tasting fundraiser, YPA also participated in a hands-on service project at GHIA on February 28th, and assisted with cleaning up the grounds, landscaping, and refurbishing chairs and other equipment (pictures below).

All-in-all, the energy behind YPA is at one of its highest levels ever, and we look forward to the continued momentum throughout 2015 with your help and involvement!  I cannot thank the volunteer board members enough for all they do to make this organization a success.


Jason W. Blanchard

President – 2015

Young Professionals of Augusta


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