By DANA LIEBELSON
POGO hosted its very first Casino Night last Friday, bringing together do-gooders for an evening of blackjack, poker, craps, raffles and chocolate-covered strawberries. All of the money raised during the event will support a fellowship in the name of our departed friend and colleague, Beth Daley, who was such a big part of POGO's success over the last decade.
The Beth Daley Impact Fund will help POGO continue pushing for important victories, such as supporting whistleblowers, exposing wasteful spending and pushing reforms that create a more open, ethical and accountable government.
As the first Beth Daley Impact Fellow, I’ve had the opportunity to work on a tremendous number of important projects—like helping victims affected by the water contamination at Camp Lejeune; interviewing U.S. Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC) about his fight to exonerate the pilots of a fatal V-22 Osprey crash; telling the stories of whistleblowers such as Kathryn Bolkovac, Mike Helms and Peter Van Buren; advocating for better defense spending, and participating as a panelist for POGO podcasts.
Special thanks goes to an anonymous donor who agreed to donate $1,000 to the fund if we could sell an extra 30 tickets in 48 hours. I'm happy to report that we met that goal! A round of "thank yous" also goes to the law firm Katz, Marshall & Banks, which helped sponsor the event. Several members of the firm joined in on the fun, including paralegal Matthew LaGarde, who also turns out is a seasoned gambler. His impressions?
As a former professional poker player who once spent a great deal of time in casinos, I can say from experience that POGO put on a great casino night! The staff was friendly and professional; everyone had a great time. And as we watched our chips slowly dwindle away, we could at least rest easy knowing our money was going to a great cause. Thanks POGO. Looking forward to next year.
But unlike Las Vegas --what happens at POGO, shouldn’t stay at POGO. We hope you’ll tell your friends, family and colleagues all about the event and Beth Daley’s legacy.
For those who missed the event, you can still support the Beth Daley Impact Fund. If you’re interested in contributing, you can click this link or contact POGO Donor Relations Manager Abby Evans at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to seeing you next year!
Dana Liebelson is POGO's Beth Daley Impact Fellow.