Speak Up for Kids of Palm Beach County Eighth Annual Benefit Gala 

Stars align to donate their time in honor of child victims of abuse

WEST PALM BEACH – “What better way to raise money than to have a party?” This question, posed almost one decade ago between passionate volunteer child advocates, Lou Scher and Larry Geller, morphed into a star-studded stage show now enjoying its eighth year; each year drawing larger, sold-out crowds.

On April 1, 2019 guests will enjoy performances by Bruce Smirnoff, Marica McClain, William Michals, and Sarge. These artists have graced both stage and screen and Smirnoff and McClain have committed to Speak Up for Kidsfor the past eight years, using their voices to raise money for those without a voice. 

“When stars align, it is always a thing of beauty,” says Speak Up for Kids Executive Director Coleen LaCosta. “For eight years running artists have committed to donating their time and talent to help give a voice to our most vulnerable. We remain honored and humbled.” 

To date, Speak Up’s GALA events have raised over $200,000, directly supporting Palm Beach County’s Guardian ad Litem Program and, on average, the 1,650 Palm Beach County children they represent. In 2018 alone, 642 case-carrying GAL volunteers helped 2,259 children, investing over 23,500 volunteer hours to advocate for their best interest! It is no wonder they are referred to as guardian angels. 

In addition to this phenomenal Gala, Geller and Scher served as a formidable Guardian ad Litem team – advocating for more than 100 children. This year’s event is bittersweet in that it will be the second year without Lou Scher. 

Geller, reflecting on Scher, says, “Some say angels walk among us. If that is true, Lou Scher was certainly an angel.” He continued, “I imagine Lou will be in the audience at every year’s Gala, with that signature twinkle in his eye, cheering for the performers and knowing he left a legacy that continues to impact the lives of our kids.”