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Portfolio > Alternative Investments > Hedge Funds

Hedge Fund Industry Gathers To Support Educational

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NEW YORK (–On Nov. 25, a cocktail party organized by a number of hedge fund officials is slated to raise money for a charity called Donors Choose.

New York City public school teachers looking to fund specific projects within their classrooms submit their proposals to the charity’s website

One project proposal came from an English teacher at Bronx Satellite Academy, an alternative high school in the South Bronx. Students there were given a chance to participate in a documentation project sponsored by the Library of Congress, where students use handheld recorders and audiotapes to record New Yorkers’ reactions to Sept. 11. Another project funded through the website was for the purchase of dictionaries for students to use at home, since English is not the primary language spoken at home.

Jacqueline Holmes, of hedge fund firm Midori Management and one of the organizers of the event, decided to get involved with Donors Choose after reading a news story about the charity earlier this year. She has set up a host committee of hedge fund officials who are in turn inviting their contacts in the hedge fund industry to attend.

The host committee includes: Jennifer Ancker, Sabre Partners; Christian Bailey, Lincoln Asset Management; Helen Cho, Gleacher Fund; Luke Imperatore, Old Hill Partners; Christine Jurinich, BlackRock; Kathleen Kelley, Solaris Capital; Raza Kahn and Balkir Zihnali, Archery Capital; John Pagli of Para Investment Advisors and Valerie Witoshki, Alkimia Group.

After a conducting strict due diligence on the charity, as she would with a hedge fund manager at Midori, Ms. Holmes said she decided to introduce the group’s founder to the hedge fund community that has been so generous in the past.

A history teacher at Wings Academy, an alternative public high school in the Bronx, Charles Best started Donors Choose in 2000. Since then, the group has received more than 450 proposals from more than 137 teachers from 72 schools. About 230 proposals have been funded, 26 of which were funded for Sept. 11 recovery efforts. A total of US$130,000 has been channeled to students with about of the donors being located outside of the city.

Proposal donors receive photographs and thank-you notes from students and teachers, as well as copies of all receipts.

Ms. Holmes is expecting at least 150 people at the cocktail party to be held at Eden in New York. Tickets are US$100.


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