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The Spirit of Giving

The Editors, Holly Haber, Helena Kontos and Jason Sheeler | October 31, 2016 | Feature Features National

Dallas is a city that thrives on philanthropy. These are the dedicated people and organizations that are responsible for the progress. We wouldn't be where we are without them.
FAMILY AFFAIR Catherine Rose and her family continue to be among the most supportive of the Dallas art scene.

Catherine Rose
Continuing a Family Legacy

The city has given my family so much,” says Catherine Rose. The 46-year-old granddaughter of Neiman Marcus founder Stanley Marcus remembers dinner-table talk when she was growing up here. “Besides the Cowboys,” she says with a laugh, “the conversations centered [on] which institutions have made the city better and how to support them. Implicit in all of the talk were expectations for everyone in my family. We had to give back. And it wasn’t just about giving money.” Married since 1994 to William Rose (son of the very charitable Deedie and the late Rusty Rose), Catherine has certainly given more than just money to the Dallas Museum of Art. She’s been on the board since 2003, was recently named to the board of trustees and has chaired the annual Art Ball (her mother did too, “and she made the decorations in our driveway!”), which is the museum’s largest fundraiser of the year. “The board’s chief responsibility is to make sure the museum is here for future generations. We do that by taking care of the works and sharing them—it’s important the members believe the museum belongs to them.” Catherine, who returned to Dallas in 1994 after college in Boston and time in New York City, finds the philanthropy scene in Dallas unique. “It’s one of those places that no matter who you are, if you have an idea and if you’re willing to do the work, people will support you. Other cities are less open, but in Dallas, it’s more collegial between organizations and institutions. There’s a sense of ‘rising tide lifts all boats.’” Dallas Museum of Art, 1717 N. Harwood St., 214.922.1200,

Another Year Older
The Dallas Opera Celebrates 60 years

In 1957, the Dallas Civic Opera staged its first production. Now known as the Dallas Opera, the organization remains strong almost six decades later. Its 60th anniversary season, which kicked off Oct. 28, includes two operas the company has never performed before: Benjamin Britten’s The Turn of the Screw and Vincenzo Bellini’s Norma. The milestone season is sure to have ticket buyers clamoring for a seat, but like so many other opera companies across the country, Dallas Opera’s ticket sales account for less than half of its total budget. With a percentage like that, the company relies heavily on fundraisers, such as First Night, an opening-night event that includes a lavish pre-performance dinner and an afterparty with the cast. Other important fundraisers that help the Opera continue to advance Dallas’ arts scene year after year include First Sight Fashion Show and Luncheon, and the Dallas Opera Guild Vocal Competition. 2403 Flora St., 214.443.1000,

Number Crunch
The number of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches made by 800 volunteers in one hour June 21, 2016, by Dallas-based sandwich brand Which Wich. The company broke the record as part of its Project PB&J initiative to help feed the hungry. The Guinness Book of World Records was on hand for the pivotal moment, and 14 Dallas area organizations benefited from the day.

Adam Kraus
Leading the New Generation

A few going notions about millennials: The Generation Ys born after 1982 are tech-savvy, entrepreneurial and civic-minded. Keep that in mind when you’re getting to know Dallas native Adam Kraus. The 30-year-old CK commercial real estate agent and former hockey player founded the Autumn Ball three years ago as a way to engage a younger social set in Dallas. Sounding a bit like another Dallas native, Toms shoes founder Blake Mycoskie, he calls the ball a “party with a purpose.” Kraus very well may be talking about his purpose. After college at Boston University, he returned home in 2011 and decided he wanted to get involved with the community. “I checked out the professional and young philanthropy groups, and found it was all the same—and really high dues or fees. It didn’t make sense to me to have to pay to give back.” Kraus’ Autumn Ball started in 2013 as an annual celebration of the previous year’s volunteer efforts. Throughout the year, Kraus holds a series of service opportunities—painting or landscaping at schools, for instance—that are all free to attend. Then it’s time for the party—this year on Nov. 4 benefiting Reading Partners, a mentoring organization that supports elementary school students who read behind their level—which will cost $120 to hang with the likes of Tony Romo at Hotel Zaza. “I’m a little different from the rest of the philanthropic circuit,” Kraus says with pride but without hubris. And with a little naivete: “I’m not one to attend a lot of galas. I went to the DSO one once. Two by Two? I don’t know what that is… I just wanted to start something that would bring in a wider group of young people—young people who are on the activist side.” Autumn Ball,

Follow Up: Crystal Charity Ball

A record-breaking $6.3 million was distributed to 11 Dallas County children’s charities last year thanks to the efforts of Crystal Charity Ball. Led by 2015 chairwoman Michal Powell, the organization, which has been a major force on the Dallas philanthropy scene since 1952, raised princely sums for deserving programs such as Dallas Children’s Theater’s sensory-friendly performances and H.I.S. BridgeBuilders’ Crossover Athletics. Fundraising efforts for the 2016 season, which included September’s Ten Best Dressed luncheon and fashion show with Carolina Herrera, culminate in a glittery black-tie ball set for Dec. 3 at Hilton Anatole. This year’s gala, with a theme of To Everything There Is a Season, will feature a customary silent auction among the dinner, dancing and mingling.


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