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Black Tie International:
The Brotherhood/Sister Sol's 10th Annual Women's Holiday Tea
Photos & Story  by:  Katlean de Monchy
Carla Harris, Dawne Marie Grannum, Gwynne Wilcox.  Photo by:  Katlean de Monchy
Carla Harris, Dawne Marie Grannum, Gwynne Wilcox
Dawne Marie Grannum, Tracy Stern, Sara Johnson Kaplan, Katlean de Monchy, Alessandra Emanuel, Lauren Lawrence, Consuelo Vanderbilt Costin (wearing Homage Jewelry).  Photo by:  katlean de Monchy
Dawne Marie Grannum, Tracy Stern, Sara Johnson Kaplan, Katlean de Monchy, Alessandra Emanuel, Lauren Lawrence, Consuelo Vanderbilt Costin (wearing Homage Jewelry)
Lauren Lawrence and Consuelo Vanderbilt Costin
The Brotherhood/Sister Sol's 10th Annual Women's Holiday Tea was held on Saturday, December 5th at the Columbia University Faculty House.  With record-breaking attendance, heartfelt speeches, exquisite silent auction selections, fine teas, and a gathering of remarkable women - it was truly an affair to remember.   The Women’s Holiday Tea benefits programming for the Brotherhood/Sister Sol (BHSS), a grassroots, nonprofit organization providing comprehensive and long-term support services to Black and Latino/a youth. 
Each year, the Women's Holiday Tea is graciously hosted by Gwynne Wilcox, a lawyer, and Co-Vice Chair of the Board of Directors of BHSS.  This annual event brings together a dynamic group of dedicated, professional women to enjoy an array of aromatic teas, flavorful fare and a fabulous Silent Auction in an intimate setting to promote, celebrate and support the life-changing work of BHSS.  What began with tea service for 30 women in 2005, has grown to well over 150 accomplished professional women, well-known and respected in the fields of law, academia, finance, the arts, medicine, and philanthropy. All proceeds from the Women’s Holiday Tea benefit BHSS holistic youth development programs.
An emotional highlight of the Tea is always hearing some of the BHSS youth talk about their background and exposure to BHSS.  This year Celeste Bond, a current BHSS student and Yakosta Tineo, an alumna and BHSS Board member took to the podium and recounted their respective BHSS experiences to an engaged and riveted audience. Another highlight of the Holiday Tea each year is the signature Silent Auction, and this year was the most spectacular one so far; some of the many generous Silent Auction donors included: Misty Copeland, and Squire Media, Miele USA, Louis Licari Salon NYC, Coach, and Baccarat . Some other product donors who helped make this year’s special anniversary Women’s Holiday Tea a success are: Avenue Magazine, Apollo Theater, Red Rooster Harlem, SOUND Sparkling Tea, Sterling Ascots, Jonathan Grassi Photography, Serendipi Tea,  Joseph P. Gulbenkian, DDS, Fashionista Tea, and shOO, Inc.
As the afternoon’s festivities drew to a close, there wasn't a dry eye in the room when the 2015 Tea Committee (June Blain Joseph, Brenda Dillon Cavette, Samantha Dulaney, Farah Griffin, Dawne Marie Grannum, Carolyn Minick Mason, Iris Roman, Wendell Shepherd, and Katherine Knight Wilcox) presented the event’s fabulous, dedicated, and totally surprised host, Gwynne Wilcox with a beautiful blue Tiffany box containing an exquisite Elsa Peretti Open Center Cuff.  It really was an affair to remember.

BHSS Mission: Founded in 1995 by two Brown University graduates, Khary Lazarre-White and Jason Warwin, BHSS provides holistic and long-term support services to youth who range in age from eight to twenty-two. BHSS offers comprehensive programming, which includes after school services, school and home counseling, summer camps, job training, college preparation, employment opportunities, community organizing training, and international study programs to Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean. Over 95% of BHSS alumni members are working full time or enrolled in college, and have attended such institutions as Yale University, Brown University, Columbia University, George Washington University, Howard University, New York University and assorted CUNY and SUNY campuses. 

You can be a part of the tremendous impact that BHSS is having on our NYC youth by making a donation today at:

Gerard Mc Keon and Joyce Brooks.  Photo by:  Rose Billings/

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