SOURCE: buildOn


November 13, 2015 12:48 ET

UPDATE - buildOn's 2015 Gala Raises $4.1 Million

Honors John M. Angelo and Leon G. Cooperman

STAMFORD, CT--(Marketwired - November 13, 2015) - John M. Angelo (Co-founder and CEO, Angelo, Gordon & Co.) and Leon G. Cooperman (Chairman and CEO, Omega Advisors, Inc.) were honored Thursday, November 12th at the buildOn Gala, an event that raised $4.1 million to support service learning programs in New York City public schools.

Over 900 influencers, business leaders and community members attended the event at the American Museum of Natural History. Angelo and Cooperman received buildOn's Global Impact Award for their unwavering support and dedication to the organization's work in the South Bronx and across the globe.

Angelo stated, when accepting the Global Impact Award along with Lee, "They [buildOn] do not pour services, money or resources into tough neighborhoods…Instead, they empower youth to lead the change and break the cycle through their own service and through education. What I love about their approach is that it works."

Cooperman added "What I find most inspiring about the buildOn students is that they don't want to leave the South Bronx, they want to change it -- from the inside. Every day these students tackle issues that affect their families and friends through service. They commit to their education. And they lift up their communities."

Also recognized were corporations joining buildOn's Partnership Program -- a program where leading companies empower their employees to mentor and build relationships with underserved youth, while working side-by-side with students to volunteer in their local communities.

buildOn's gala grew by 14% increase from last year thanks, in large part, to this program. Participating companies include: Angelo Gordon; Deutsche Bank; Goldman Sachs; CSI; J.P. Morgan; PWC; Weil, Gotschal & Mannes; KPMG; and GE.

buildOn students shared their stories of how the organization has become a powerful tool of change in their lives through spoken word, vocal performances and through keynote speeches by students like Chris Tavarez (Bronx, NY) who spoke about the power service has to the change culture of failing schools.

Others in attendance included Diahann Billings-Burford (Executive Director, Corporate Responsibility, Time Warner, Inc.), Lilliana Vazquez (Style Expert, TV Host), Fatima Ptacek (Voice of DORA THE EXPLORER, Oscar winning film CURFEW), Jeff Bornstein (Senior VP & CFO at GE) and Jim Parke (Vice Chairman & CFO -Retired- at GE Capital) among many more.

To find out more about the buildOn gala or to request an invitation to next year's event, please email

ABOUT buildOn: In the U.S., buildOn runs intensive service learning programs in challenged urban high schools. We empower youth to contribute direct service to their communities -- working with senior citizens, the homeless, and younger children. These same students help build schools in some of the economically poorest countries in the world. Our students have contributed more than 1.6 million hours of service in the U.S., and have helped build more than 837 schools in Burkina Faso, Haiti, Nicaragua, Nepal, Senegal, Malawi, and Mali. 93% of buildOn students in the U.S. not only graduate from high school, they go on to college. And internationally, our schools provide access to education for more than 107,000 children, parents and grandparents every day. For more information, visit

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