Generous partners, Friends, presenters and participants took center stage as the Gettysburg Foundation hosted its Gala event Nov. 18, 2022. The Gala raised funds to support the Foundation’s mission of preservation and education to ensure the lessons of Gettysburg remain alive for not only this generation, but for generations that follow.
The sold-out event, held at the Gettysburg National Military Park Museum & Visitor Center, brought together more than 275 corporate and foundation sponsors, Gettysburg Foundation Directors, donors, Friends of Gettysburg and elected officials. The Gala raised more than $575,000 for the Foundation’s education and preservation mission while shining a spotlight on those who gathered to support those goals. As part of that total, the Raise the Paddle fundraiser during the Gala raised more than $187,000 for direct support of priority National Park Service projects at Gettysburg National Military Park and Eisenhower National Historic Site.
“On behalf of the Gettysburg Foundation and its Board of Directors, staff and volunteers, we are grateful for the generous support from the gala attendees, speakers and sponsors. Raising nearly $600,000 and filling the venue to capacity is a testament to the commitment of so many folks to our education and preservation mission, as well as a reflection on the relevancy of the powerful stories and lessons of Gettysburg to present and future generations,” said Gettysburg Foundation President and CEO Wayne E. Motts.
The evening honored the late Robert A. (Bob) Kinsley, Chair Emeritus, with a special tribute to the Founder of the Gettysburg Foundation.
The evening celebrated the passion, dedication and commitment of Bob and Anne Kinsley and family, and honored their legacy with Foundation Board Member Col. (Ret.) Hal Kushner, M.D., presenting the 2022 Kinsley Award to officers and crew of the USS Gettysburg (CG-64) for their service to our country and their dedication to battlefield preservation here at Gettysburg. Named in honor of the Kinsley family for their years of service and support of the Gettysburg Foundation and its mission, the award is presented to an individual or organization that exemplifies Abraham Lincoln’s vision of a humble, civil and inclusive society. Previous awardees include Stephen Lang, James M. McPherson and Gabor Boritt.
During the USS Gettysburg’s acceptance of the Kinsley Award, Captain Megan Thomas, Commanding Officer of the USS Gettysburg, thanked Mrs. Anne Kinsley for the contributions that she, her husband Bob and her family have made in support of Gettysburg. “The relationship we have continued to build with the Gettysburg Foundation and the National Park Service has deepened the understanding of our namesake and allowed our crew to learn about the battle's hallowed history first-hand,” the Captain said. “We are grateful for the support the Foundation continues to provide to the Officers and Crew and the generations of Americans to ensure that the sacrifices made here are never forgotten.”
Policy analyst and author Susan Eisenhower presented the keynote address during which she offered insightful comments on the meaning and enduring lessons of Gettysburg. The parka that her grandfather Dwight D. Eisenhower wore when he visited the troops in Korea as president-elect in 1952 was unveiled during the Gala. The Gettysburg Foundation provided the funds to purchase the parka for the National Park Service.
Gettysburg Foundation Director Adrianna Echavarria-Eisenhower served as the event’s chair.
The 2023 Gala will be held Friday, Nov. 3.