December 7, 2011

'What's Right with America" on 11.11.11

On 11.11.11, Brian's Foundation's event, "What's Right with America" reassured everyone in attendance that there is hope...there is good. Enjoy the following photos by Kim Klein.
Ben Fischl, 2008 Brian LaViolette Scholarship recipient came from Air Force Academy in Colorado to join us.

Mrs. Bradley, John Bradley's wife was the first to be escorted by Navy Chief Joel Stewart.  John Bradley will always be remembered for helping raise the flag on Iwo Jima, but his greatest accomplishment during WWII was saving the lives of combat Marines, for which he received the Navy Cross.
The LaViolette's with Green Bay Packers, Donald Driver. He was our first "Brian LaViolette Spirit Award" recipient for his work in our community and his foundation who help and inspire  the homeless.

USMC Sgt Alvin Dupree blessed the dinner and our evening

Tyler Hopkins, our first Scholarship of Honor Recipient in 2004.  He had returned from Afghanistan just weeks before and came from Louisiana. 

Brian LaViolette Spirit Award Recipient, George Patton Waters, General Patton's Grandson signs a portrait by Hollywood Artist Nicolosi, of his Grandfather

Nick Del Calzo, creator and photographer of the Medal of Honor Portraits of Valor.  He was another recipient of the Brian LaViolette Spirit Award for his work in Literature. 

Hollywood Artist, Nicolosi with his original works of art done just for the 11.11.11 auction

The powerful and talented Great American Orchestra and Vocal Ensemble

Our hard working volunteers at Check in and Registration

Zach Sites, 2007 Eric McColley Scholarship of Honor Recipient from Gettysburg, PA received the Brian LaViolette Spirit Award and spoke of how Brian's Foundation has helped him through the years.
We can't thank everyone who was involved to make 'What's Right with America' a night to remember!

October 25, 2011

Packers Donald Driver to Receive ‘Spirit Award’ on 11.11.11

We are proud to announce that the Green Bay Packers' Donald Driver (#80) will receive our first ever Brian LaViolette Spirit Award the night of 11.11.11!! Donald was chosen for his tireless work in helping the homeless, inspiring students and supporting community organizations and causes.

Donald Driver is one of those individuals who started with nothing and has worked hard to better not only his life but the lives of so many around him and we think he is the perfect choice for the Spirit Award.

Like all Packers fans worldwide, we are proud of Donald's great accomplishments on the field, but more importantly he was selected for the qualities he demonstrates off the field……his strength of character, perseverance, hard work, dedication, love of family and community spirit.

Other honorees have been selected in the fields of philanthropy, literature and community service and will be recognized during this historic evening.

If you'd like to be there to witness Donald Driver receiving the Brian LaViolette Spirit Award, please contact us at 920-655-4098 for ticket information.

October 18, 2011

Want to wear a tux to our event on 11.11.11?

Thanks to Dubois Formalwear, you can attend 11.11.11 in a tux at a discounted price!  They are offering a tux rental, including shoes for only $50 for our guest.  
Gold Star Families will receive their tuxes at no charge!!  Please call 920-437-9231 for more details or visit their website :  Dubois Formalwear

September 1, 2011

New Board Member, Chris Schuler, was also Brian's Friend

The Schuler family has been in our lives since I was a young girl.  Chris played soccer with Brian and our parents became good friends.  Some of you remember that Chris' mom, Connie, joined our Board of Advisors a couple of years ago and Connie and her husband, Bill have always been very supportive of Brian's Foundation.

When Chris approached our family to see if he could also serve on our Board of Advisors, it didn't take long for us to decide what a wonderful fit this would be.  Chris is Brian's first peer who will be on the board and we have our first 'mother/son' team. 
Chris Schuler is third from the left (top row), Brian is the third from the right
Chris recently moved back to Green Bay after earning his MBA with an emphasis in Strategic Management and Finance from the University of Minnesota.  After he received his BA from UW-Madison, Chris lived in Chicago for eight years, where he worked in Marketing. 

When I asked Chris why he wanted to get involved with Brian's Foundation, he said "Since moving back to Green Bay, I have been looking to get involved with our community and having followed your foundation since it began, I wanted to get involved at a different level.  It seemed like a good fit, because of my friendship with Brian for so many years and all the positive things you guys are doing."

We know Chris will bring a lot to Brian's Foundation as we continue to serve our future leaders.

August 29, 2011

Nainoa Hoe Scholarship of Honor presented by our next generation

The US Army ROTC program on the Manoa Campus of the University of Hawaii has a unique legacy. It is the only Army ROTC Unit authorized a "Campaign or Battle Streamer" earned in the days following the attack on Pearl Harbor 70 years ago. 

On Friday another chapter opened in the Warrior Battalion's proud legacy. It marked the beginning of a journey of service for another proud son of Hawaii selected as this year’s Nainoa Hoe Scholarship of Honor Recipient, James C. Mahoney.

James C. Mahoney, a 2011 graduate of Roosevelt High School was selected for his academic achievements, his leadership in the Hawaii Junior ROTC program and his dedication to public service.

This year was also extra special because sponsor and board member of Brian’s Foundation, Ohelo Kaopio’s 14 year old son, Maverick gave the presentation.

COL Doug Mulbury, the Garrison Commander and ROTC alumni with 26 years of service presented the Scholarship of Honor medal.

James is pictured here with Nainoa's dad, Allen and Maverick Kaopio.

Following the presentation, the cadets who had accompanied James, including last year's awardee Haley Okamura toured the US Army’s Battle Command Training Center at Schofield Barracks, named in honor of Nainoa K. Hoe.

When notified of the scholarship award, James was surprised and very honored. “I’m humbled and honored to receive this award and excited to learn and grow and hopefully continue in the Warrior Battalion's tradition of exemplary service as an Army Officer,” James said.

August 25, 2011

Pop Artist Nicolosi, special guest at 11.11.11's Celebration of 'What's Right with America"

One of Hollywood’s most acclaimed artists, Nicolosi, will be unveiling three of his original works of art which he created exclusively for our 11.11.11 auction.

This 9-11 10th Anniversary Commemorative Portrait is one of the original works of art that will only be available at the 11.11.11 auction.

Nicolosi joined forces with the Brian LaViolette Foundation after having learned of its mission and dedication to celebrating the indomitable spirit of American ingenuity and all that is right with the United States of America.

In addition to his celebrated works of art which are privately commissioned for such luminaries as American Presidents, Clint Eastwood, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Gary Sinise, Helen Mirren and a who’s who of Hollywood’s “Glitterati”, Nicolosi has been the preeminent artist for all of the Major Award shows in Hollywood, including: The Golden Globe Awards, The Academy Awards, The Grammys, The Emmy’s and The SAG Awards.

His unique signature-styled artwork has been seen by millions on National television, in feature film, as well as being at the center of many other prestigious events around the world, including The Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, France.

July 28, 2011

Margaret Viola presented the Tom Hudner Scholarship of Honor at EAA

Margaret Viola graduated from the University of Chicago in 2010 with a BA in Physics and is currently working as a science teach in Somaliland, East Africa.

She is participating in Flight Lessons to obtain her private pilot's license. Margaret was presented the Tom Hudner Scholarship of Honor at EAA Airventure, one of "The World's Greatest Aviation Celebration" in Oshkosh, WI.

She is pictured here with Doug and Renee LaViolette, her brother Adam and parents, Laurie and Joel.

July 20, 2011

Preview Auction items at Jet Air

 Thanks to Jet Air in Green Bay, Wisconsin (located at 1921 Airport Drive) you can now have a sneak peak at some of the unique items that will only be available at our auction on 11.11.11 as we celebrate, "What's Right with America." 

A big thanks to Jet Air for displaying the items, as well as, including Brian's logo and link on their: Jet Air website

July 15, 2011

Welcome New Board Member Lou LeCalsey!

We are excited to welcome the newest member to the Brian LaViolette Foundation Board of Advisors…  Lou LeCalsey III.  

Lou is the immediate past President and CEO of a publicly traded company, Tufco Technologies headquartered in Green Bay, Wisconsin.  He continues as a member of its Board of Directors.

He grew up in Philadelphia, PA where he graduated from Franklin and Marshall College.  He still holds the record for most goal keeping saves on the soccer team. He later attended UW-Oshkosh for his Masters in finance and marketing.

Lou is very involved with UW-Green Bay and currently serves as the founding and current Chair of the Chancellor’s Council of Trustees for UW-Green Bay and Chair of the UW-Green Bay Foundation Board of Directors.  He was also the founding head soccer coach in 1969-1970 and was inducted in the Phoenix Athletic Hall of Fame in 2000.

Lou served six years in the Marine Corps where he was a Platoon Sergeant in Force Reconnaissance parachute and scuba qualified special operations unite and saw deployment in the Cuban Missile crisis and the early days of the Vietnam War. 

He is very involved with the community. In addition to what was mentioned above, he is a member of the Advisory Board of Bradford Ventures in White Plains NY and has served on the board of the Green Bay YMCA, TriMark, Inc and Independent Printing Company.

Lou and his wife, Sue, have been married over 32 years and are residents of Ledgeview, WI.  They are actively involved with the breeding and showing of champion Boston Terries. 

Welcome aboard Lou!  We are honored to have you a part of Brian’s Board of Advisors! 

July 4, 2011

Donation to General Patton Scholarship of Honor in honor of Past Hero

George Thompson
A donation to the General George Patton Scholarship of Honor in Pilsen, Czech Republic was made in honor of George Thompson and the men of the 16th Armored Division, by George's son-in-law, Dale Rieb.  George Thompson spent three years on active duty in the United States Army  and continued to serve by staying in the reserves earning retirement as a 1st Sergeant.  

The skills he learned in the Army provided him a lifelong career as a mechanic. He remains actively involved in the 16th armored division annual reunions. George made his first trip back to the Czech Republic in 1991 and has attended the liberation celebration eight times visiting and making new friends. 

If you ask him about the war he says they were just doing their jobs and that he only made a small contribution to the war effort.  He will also tell you he has great respect for the Czechs and they have always impressed him with their optimistic outlook on life despite all the country has been through.

For more information on the General Patton Scholarship of Honor, please visit our website and blog post.

June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day!

From Brian’s autobiography assignment in 8th grade:

“Enough about me, let’s talk about my dad.  His childhood reminds me of Tom Sawyer’s.  You may be wondering why I chose to tribute him.  Well, he puts everything he’s got into everything he does.  He had a paper route that still puts a spark in his eye.  Throughout his lifetime he must have had twenty jobs.  Not because he was fired, my dad just had to keep moving.  Out of all these reasons, the main reason I wrote a tribute to my dad is because I love him.” 

June 7, 2011

Nikhitha Murali receives the $10,000 Brian LaViolette Scholarship

The 5th annual Brian LaViolette Scholarship was awarded to Nikhitha Murali at the Partners in Education Youth Celebration.

Nikhitha is an incredible young woman who has already accomplished so much, including organizing a medical/health camp in a small village in India.  She plans to follow her medical passion as she pursues a degree in Neuroscience with a pre-med focus at the University of Chicago. 

May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day!

From Brian’s autobiography assignment in 8th grade:

“Let me tell you about a person who was, and is, very special to me.  This person I owe my life to, and I’m not exaggerating one bit.  She brought me into this world.  She has taught me right from wrong and always finds a way to make me grin.  One thing that she has taught me that I will never forget is the value of trust.  That five letter word has helped me throughout my life.  Even more important than trust is a four letter word that will always be between us…love."

Well said, Brian, well said.  

May 2, 2011

Pay it Forward

Our very own Kim Klein, a member of our Board, won a beautiful ring through jen Hough Jewelry for our 11.11.11 auction!
Through the power of Facebook, Jen Hough had a competition to win her original ‘My Darling 
Clementine’ ring.

You had to post a three word phrase to Jen Hough Jewelry's ‘wall’ and whatever post had the most ‘likes’ won this ring.  

Kim Klein’s post:  PAY IT FORWARD.  And she just did just that by donating it to our 11.11.11 auction!!  And did I mention she won by a landslide?  Thank you Kim-and Jen- for paying it forward!

April 7, 2011

Paying tribute to others as students welcome new beginnings

Brian enjoying Spring-1979
There is nothing like Spring. Winter dissolves into green grass, budding flowers, the growth of vegetables and warm breezes.

Springtime for Brian's Foundation represents the end of the school year allowing new beginnings for many--students gear up for the end of the school year, teachers plan end of the year exams, and parents prepare for their 'baby' to enter the real world.

Like spring every year, Brian's Foundation has new growth-45 new scholarship recipients become a part of our every-growing garden. Budding young men and women enter the next phase in their life and go through all that is yet to come like a warm breeze.

Scholarship of Honor Presentation Dates

We are honored to pay tribute to 21 heroes annually through one of our programs, the Scholarship of Honor.
Arlington-Remembering, Len Keller

The programs' mission is: To honor, to remember, those who serve, while recognizing dedication, community service and selflessness in those who follow in their footsteps.

The Scholarships are in the names of our past and present military heroes. They are awarded to a student entering into the military or a form of public safety or community service.

Those we honor with scholarships in their names are:

Danny Dietz: Heritage High School, Littleton CO-- May 16, 7:00pm

Joe Welke: Rapid City Stevens High School, SD-- May 16, 7:00pm

John Bradley: Appleton West High School, WI-- May 18, 6:30pm

Robert Foley: United States Military Academy, West Point NY-- May 18, 2:30pm

Kyle Hemauer: Chilton High School, WI- Engler Performing Arts Center-- May 18, 7:00pm

Ryan Jerabek: Pulaski High School auditorium, WI-- May 18, 8:30am

Ron Sager: Fox Valley Lutheran High School auditorium, WI-- May 18, 9:00am

James Cathey: Reno High School, NV-- May 19, 7:00pm at Peppermill Hotel Casino

Andrew Brownfield: North High School Akron, OH --Sunday, May 20th, 9:00am

Isaiah Hunt: Bayport High School, WI-- May 20, 9:00am

Ben Edinger: Green Bay West High School, WI-- May 25, 6:00pm

Nichole Frye: Lena High School, WI-- May 25, 7:30pm

Len Keller: Guildford High School, IL-- May 25, 7:45 am

Eric McColley: Gettysburg High School, PA-- May 25, 7:00pm

Brent Vroman: Omro High School Commons, WI-- May 25, 7:00pm

Jesse Thiry: Luxemburg-Casco High School Gym-- May 27, 9:00am

Ken Hess: Reynolds High School, Asheville NC--May 31, 7:00pm

Ken Stumpf, Elmer Burr: Menasha High School-- May 31, 9:30am

Mike Colalillo: Denfeld High School auditorium, MN-- June 2, 7:00pm

Tom Hudner: EAA-Airventure, Oshkosh, WI-- July 26, 6:00pm

Nainoa Hoe: 1Lt Nainoa K. Hoe Battle Command Training Center, Schofield Barracks, HI August 26

March 4, 2011

Past Scholarship Recipient has earned the title of Miss Wisconsin

Kimberly Sawyer, a past scholarship recipient of the Brian LaViolette Scholarship went on to be crowned Miss Wisconsin in June of 2010. Her story is pretty remarkable…

This was her second try at Miss Wisconsin, as she had been Miss Door County in 2008 and hadn't placed that year. But she didn’t give up..her reward was being crowned Miss Wisconsin last year. As it turns out, her sister Katie also competed at Miss Wisconsin that year, and was her first runner-up! A first in Miss America history!

Kimberly earned a Bachelor's of Business Administration with an emphasis in Finance and a minor in Spanish. She also played on the St. Norbert College softball team, and was a captain during her senior year when they won the conference championship.

As she continues her journey as Miss Wisconsin this year, she has had amazing opportunities and unforgettable and inspiring memories. She represents the Miss America Organization which provides $45 million in scholarships every year to young women across the country, and is also involved with Children's Miracle Network Hospitals.

She also promotes her personal platform entitled "Service for the Soul" which promotes volunteerism and the importance of matching volunteers with organizations that match their passions, their goals, and schedules so that they may become life-long volunteers with those organizations.

With so many appearances as Miss Wisconsin, her most favorite thing to do is speak to students. She shares with them the importance of believing in themselves and their abilities, dreaming big, setting goals, and making good decisions to reach those goals.

January 4, 2011

Brian's Foundation becomes a Public Charity

Brian's Foundation has officially become a public charity as of January 1, 2011. We were established as a private foundation 18 years ago when we awarded one scholarship in memory of Brian LaViolette. Now awarding over 40 scholarships worldwide annually, the foundation has legally become a public charity.

Public charities typically carry out the same type of direct, charitable giving as private foundations. The true definition of a public charity, though, goes well beyond the programs and into the realm of structure and revenue source. One advantage of public charities over private foundations is the ability to attract support from other public charities and private foundations.

We are happy that this status has gone through and we look forward to what it will bring to Brian's Foundation.  Thank you all for your support through the years!