The annual fundraiser benefits the Simon Youth Foundation and Pacers Foundation
The presidents of two of Indiana’s highly-respected public higher education institutions will be the joint honorees of the 18th annual Masquerade, one of Indianapolis’ premier philanthropic events, on Saturday, October 19, 2019 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. The event will honor Mitchell “Mitch” E. Daniels, Jr., President of Purdue University, and Dr. Michael A. McRobbie, President of Indiana University.
The Masquerade brings together influential leaders from across the state and nation for an evening of fun, entertainment, and the opportunity to be with the Indiana Pacers players, coaches and staff. The event’s proceeds benefit Simon Youth Foundation and Pacers Foundation, making it possible for the Foundations to continue their critical work of providing youth with hope, opportunity and access to quality education. The Masquerade has raised more than $14 million for the two organizations since its inception in 2002.
Building on the tradition of recognizing leaders who make lasting contributions to Indiana and beyond, Simon Youth Foundation and the Pacers Foundation are pleased to honor transformative education leaders Daniels and McRobbie. As joint honorees, Presidents Daniels and McRobbie demonstrate that when it comes to education, all are on the same team.
Daniels became the 12th president of Purdue University in January 2013 after two terms as Governor of the State of Indiana. As president of Purdue University, which celebrates its 150th anniversary in 2019, Daniels has prioritized student affordability and reinvestment in the university’s strengths – leading to unprecedented growth in student success and STEM research. Under Daniels’ leadership as governor, Indiana earned its first AAA credit rating, led the nation in infrastructure building, and passed sweeping education, property tax and healthcare reforms.
McRobbie became the 18th president of Indiana University in 2007. Under his leadership, IU, which will celebrate its Bicentennial Year beginning July 1, has experienced a major expansion in the size, quality and diversity of its student body and an enhanced commitment to providing a first-rate education that is affordable, innovative and relevant to meet the evolving needs of students and Indiana’s leading employers. In addition to his duties as president, McRobbie has leadership roles with the Association of American Universities and the Applied Research Institute, a nonprofit in Indiana that accelerates the commercialization of technology across the state.
“We are thrilled to recognize presidents Daniels and McRobbie at this year’s Masquerade celebration,” said Masquerade Co-Chair Cindy Simon Skjodt. “We are deeply grateful to the commitment they have both made to ensuring access to quality education in the state of Indiana and across the globe.” Previous honorees have included Larry Bird, Quinn Bucker, Tamika Catchings, Rick Fuson, Frank Hancock, the Hulman-George Family, Clark Kellogg, Kelly Krauskopf, John and Sarah Lechleiter, Bobby “Slick” Leonard, Reggie Miller, Jim Morris, Deborah J. Simon, Herbert Simon, Melvin Simon, Cindy Simon Skjodt, Jeff Smulyan, Steve Stitle, and Donnie Walsh.
The Masquerade evening will begin with a reception, followed by a dinner and tribute. Special guests will include the entire Indiana Pacers team and basketball staff as well as many of the past Masquerade honorees. The Masquerade is made possible through the generous support of many local and national sponsors. PNC Bank will return as the event’s title sponsor for the 18th year. For ticket and sponsorship information, please contact Brandi Young at (317) 263-7694 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Simon Youth Foundation
Simon Youth Foundation (SYF) is a national nonprofit committed to helping students graduate. SYF works toward this mission by partnering with local public school districts to launch Simon Youth Academies, alternative classroom settings located primarily in Simon Malls, and by providing Simon Youth Scholarships to Academy graduates and students who live near Simon Malls. Since its inception, SYF has maintained a 90 percent graduation rate at its 35 Simon Youth Academies in 15 states, helping more than 17,500 students graduate, and has awarded more than $17 million in post-secondary scholarships. Visit syf.org to learn more.
About Pacers Foundation
Pacers Foundation, Inc., the public charity founded by Pacers Sports & Entertainment, is dedicated to improving the lives of Indiana’s young people by supporting projects and programming that benefit Indiana’s youth. Since its inception in 1993, Pacers Foundation has awarded more than $8 million in grants, scholarships, donations, and Pacers and Fever tickets to youth-serving organizations. To learn more, go to pacersfoundation.org.