5 questions with Deborah Driscoll
Deborah Driscoll is co-chair of AIDS Interfaith Network’s 2009 Bloomin’ Ball. A native of California, she moved to Dallas in April 2006 after living in Seattle for a number of years. She works in the telecommunications industry as a finance manager and is a partner in a private telecommunications company. She lives in the North Dallas area with her life partner and best friend, Cletis. She was recently appointed to the development committee for AIN.
What is the AIDS Interfaith Network?
AIN has been providing individuals with a source of help and hope for 23 years. The staff of 17 serves almost 2,000 people who are living with HIV/AIDS, and contacts more than 25,000 through outreach and HIV prevention. Two specific outreach programs are based out of AIN. They are the African-American Health Coalition and "Manos Unidas," which serves the Latino community.
How did you become involved with the AIDS Interfaith Network?
When I lived in Seattle I always volunteered for organizations that helped the most needy of the community. When I relocated to Dallas, I knew no one and wanted to get back into the volunteering. After researching many service organizations I found AIN’s purpose, mission and clients to be a good fit for me. In addition to being a volunteer with the Buddy Program, I joined the inaugural steering committee for the Bloomin’ Ball.
Tell me about the Bloomin’ Ball.
The Bloomin’ Ball, now in its third year, is an event with a welcoming and comfortable atmosphere set amongst a vibrant floral scene. It includes a reception with live entertainers, cocktails and an extensive silent auction. The evening continues with a seated dinner. During the dinner the program includes live music, inspirational speakers, a live auction and presentation of the Crystal Hope Awards.
For Black Tie, you are a part of the Revenue and Development Committee. What do you do?
I became involved as a volunteer with Black Tie Dinner because of AIN being a beneficiary. I continue to volunteer on the Revenue and Development Committee, which is responsible for the live and silent auctions, the dinner journal and the raffle of the car at the event. This year, my focus is on the procurement of items for the silent auction. Volunteering with Black Tie has been an incredible learning experience, very rewarding, and has allowed me to meet great people from the local community.
Why should an individual get involved with AIDS Interfaith Network?
AIN serves a segment of the HIV/AIDS population that is crucial and most often treated as "invisible" to the public. As a volunteer, you have the ability to make a difference and have an immediate impact on persons who are most in need.
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This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition February 27, 2009.