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March 13, 2018
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (March 12, 2018) – More than 400 parents, students, local business leaders and supporters attended the third annual Palm Beach Philanthropy Tank event on Sunday at the A. W. Dreyfoos School of the Arts. Eight highly innovative, student-designed community betterment ideas were selected from over 50 applications to advance to this final round. Students from those eight teams pitched their ideas live on-stage to a panel of four Palm Beach-based Philanthropist-Investors. A total of $100,000 in prize money was awarded to the finalists to implement their programs over the next year. Each team of student-finalists also receives a year of mentoring from their Philanthropist-Investor. Sally Lou Loveman was the evening’s emcee, and kept the energy upbeat throughout the night including during the Philanthropist-Investors deliberation break when the enthusiastic crowd donated more than $18,500 to support the project. Loveman is the former audience producer for “The Oprah Winfrey Show” and “Oprah’s Lifeclass” for OWN.
“Year after year, Palm Beach Philanthropy Tank attracts a diverse group of incredibly talented students from around Palm Beach County with meaningful community service projects, and this year was no exception. In just a matter of weeks, these students went from submitting their proposals, to practicing their pitches, to standing on stage in front of hundreds of excited supporters and our team of Philanthropist-Investors,” said Evan C. Deoul, AB Bernstein’s Senior Managing Director, co-founder of Palm Beach Philanthropy Tank with Michael L. Kohner, Managing Director of Andersen Tax. “And we have to thank our generous audience, which donated $18,500 during the 20 minutes our investors were deliberating. We look forward to continuing this program for years to come and watching these students make an impact in our community,” said Kohner.
The four judge panel, which serves as both the Philanthropist-Investors and as mentors, was comprised of four Palm Beach residents: Jim Karp, John Scarpa, Christine Stiller and Rick Stone. Together, they agreed to fund up to $15,000 to each idea and one year of mentoring to support the ideas that will combat issues we face in Palm Beach County. The students that received funding will now work closely with their investor to develop a business plan and strategy for success.
To be considered for a spot in the finals, applicants were required to submit a description of their project that addressed community impact, program feasibility, solution creativity, sustainability and team strengths. The 2018 finalists received the following funding towards their projects:
  • School: American Heritage School of Boca Delray
  • Team: Brianna Detamore, Kiah Kimpton, Zoe Deitelbaum and Naven Parthasathy
  • Pitch: Provide low-income senior citizens in Palm Beach County with hurricane safety kits that include non-perishable food, emergency supplies and a survival guide.
  • Mentor: Jim Karp
  • Amount awarded: $12,000
  • SURFACE 71
  • School: Forest Hill High School, Conniston Middle School, Suncoast High School
  • Team: Jemma Currie, Angeli Romero and Emily Briceno
  • Pitch: Reduce plastic use, improve marine habitats, educate and promote awareness about our environment.
  • Mentor: Christine Stiller
  • Amount awarded: $12,000
  • School: Oxbridge Academy
  • Team: Joseph Rubsamen
  • Pitch: Collect and distribute gently used and new shoes for adults and children in need in Palm Beach County and abroad.
  • Mentor: Rick Stone
  • Amount awarded: $14,000
  • School: The Weiss School
  • Team: Nestor Flores and Shane Herman
  • Pitch: Provide people with dyslexia an opportunity to practice reading in stress-free environments.
  • Mentor: John Scarpa
  • Amount awarded: $10,000
  • School: Glades Central Community High School, Lake Shore Middle School, Glades Day School
  • Team: Guadalupe Alcala-Garcia, Yalissa Baltazar and Mya Rodriguez
  • Pitch: Assist Western Palm Beach County students in need to obtain uniforms mid-year so they can focus on academics and not their appearance.
  • Mentor: Rick Stone
  • Amount awarded: $7,000
  • School: Boca Raton High School
  • Team: Tess Flemma and John Schuttler
  • Pitch: Construct two more outdoor aquaponics systems at a middle and elementary school to promote sustainable farming and donate produce to organizations in need.
  • Mentor: Christine Stiller
  • Amount awarded: $15,000
  • School: A.W. Dreyfoos School of the Arts
  • Team: Sophia Zheng and Hayley Huber
  • Pitch: Offer free music camps, lessons and instruments to underprivileged and musically ambi­tious students throughout the year.
  • Mentor: Jim Karp
  • Amount awarded: $15,000
  • School: Claire and Emanuel G. Rosenblatt High School at Donna Klein Jewish Academy
  • Team: Noah Rubin
  • Pitch: Provide computer programming classes and teenage mentors for young minds across Palm Beach County 
  • Mentor: John Scarpa              
  • Amount awarded: $15,000
Palm Beach Philanthropy Tank was developed by Advisors for Philanthropic Impact (API), a group comprised of trust and estate attorneys, CPAs, financial advisors, life insurance professionals, and non-profit leaders, all who are Chartered Advisors in Philanthropy (CAP©). Applicants were required to submit a description of their project that included community impact, program feasibility, solution creativity, sustainability and team strength. The type of social issues addressed by the selected students hunger, homelessness, medical care, education for underprivileged students, education for emotionally and/or physically challenged youth, and public health and welfare.
Annual Sponsors for Palm Beach Philanthropy Tank include AB Bernstein, Braman Motorcars, Gunster, Lennar Foundation, Otis Elevator, and Quantum Foundation. Event Sponsors include Publix Super Market Charities and Burlingame Consultants Group, Harvey and Virginia Kimmel, Ronnie and Susan Pertnoy, David and Beth Swirnow Family Fund, Leibowitz Realty Group, PNC Wealth Management, UBS.  Partners of the program include API, the Community Foundation for Palm Beach and Martin Counties, the Education Foundation of Palm Beach County and the Maltz Jupiter Theatre, and Palm Beach Atlantic University.
For more information and to follow the finalists’ journeys, visit
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Tony Theissen, Senior Brand Manager/Media Strategist
(561) 832-3231

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