On February 29th, Breakthrough supporters, students, and parents joined co-chairs Ting and John Bresnahan, Consuelo and Ian Macpherson, and Lauren and Brad Morgan to celebrate the graduating class of 2016 at our annual Graduation Luncheon. This year’s event centered on a theme of “Building Our Future” and was hosted at the newly constructed Flores Hall at St. John’s School. Breakthrough Houston experienced its largest event turnout yet with nearly 470 guests, raising about $150,000 in total!

Ann Stern, president of Houston Endowment, delivered the luncheon’s keynote address and affirmed that “what Breakthrough is doing is changing lives.” Along with reinforcing to the students that they are qualified to be successful through college and to contribute to the community, Stern added that Breakthrough’s leaders “are building a strong teacher pipeline, recruiting, retaining . . . . Breakthrough is proving what works. It’s an innovation that is going to put pressure on the school system to ultimately change.” Kathy Heinzerling, executive director of Breakthrough Houston, announced to the record-breaking crowd that Breakthrough Houston will both expand and open a new site at KIPP CONNECT in June 2016. The new Breakthrough site at KIPP CONNECT will serve students from KIPP CONNECT, YES Prep Gulfton, Jane Long Academy, and KIPP Sharpstown. Kathy added that “it will be another way that we serve the Houston community right where the need is.”