Fostering Hope for Education

After viewing the documentary Aging Out, about the plight of youth exiting the foster care system, Darrell Mays was compelled to act. He founded The nsoro Educational Foundation with a mission to provide access to postsecondary education for youth in foster care, wards of the state and youth who have aged out of the foster care system. The Starfish Ball was created to introduce a cause at the edge of awareness and raise the funding necessary to educate this vulnerable population.

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The nsoro Educational Foundation Celebrates 15 Years

The nsoro Educational Foundation Celebrates 15 Years and Raises $1.3 M at 2020 Starfish Ball Honoring Professional Football Hall of Fame, Jerome Bettis & U.S. Senator Kelly Loeffler, Former Bakkt CEO & WNBA Atlanta Dream, Co-Owner

Proceeds support post-secondary attainment of youth aging out of the foster care system

(Atlanta, GA) The St. Regis Hotel Ballroom was transformed into a spectacular New Orleans themed extravaganza as the nsoro Educational Foundation guests laissez le bon temps rouler ‘let the good times roll’ celebrating 15 years of service and raising $1.3 million for aspiring collegians aging out of the foster care system.

The festive tradition of the Starfish Mardi Gras theme serves as a loving salute to the New Orleans heritage of nsoro’s Chairman and Founder, Darrell Mays.

A who’s who of dignitaries, corporate titans, esteemed philanthropists and supporters filled the soldout ballroom as guests enjoyed dinner and dancing, silent and live auction and live band. nsoro was honored to welcome Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms who was also celebrating her 50th Birthday. Stephanie Travis Patterson served as Starfish Ball Chair.

The distinguished guests were nsoro’s (29) twenty-nine college graduates from ten states across the country. Their presence provided up close insights on the value of nsoro’s Scholarship and the critical wrap-around supports provided throughout their post-secondary journey. Keynote graduate, Justin Black, Western Michigan University, provided a heart-wrenching depiction of how a young kid from Detroit, taking bucket showers of melted snow went from foster care to college graduate thanks in large part to the support of nsoro.

Corporate sponsors for the monumental 15-year celebration were Mercedes-Benz USA, Georgia Power, Delta Air Lines, Goldman Sachs, Mercedes-Benz of Buckhead, Wilson Lewis, Wilmington Trust & Transportation Impact.

“Within the population we serve, a college degree changes more than the trajectory of one life, it directly impacts the legacy of a generation. We are profoundly grateful for the many benefactors, corporate partners and volunteers who make that change possible.” said nsoro Executive Director
Monica Pantoja.

[mk_button dimension=”three” size=”medium” outline_skin=”dark” bg_color=”#00c8d7″ text_color=”light” icon=”moon-quill” url=”https://nsoro.foundation/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/post-event-press-release.pdf” target=”_self” align=”left” id=”Buton ID” margin_top=”0″ margin_bottom=”15″]Download the press release[/mk_button]