Annual Fund Kickoff Breakfast: an excellent start
It may have been the line that said it all at this week’s Annual Fund Kickoff Breakfast: “Greenhills is home.”
The speaker was Pete Pullen ’82, a former Greenhills student and teacher who now is head of school at Eton Academy in Birmingham, Mich. He said he wouldn’t be in the role he’s in today if it weren’t for his Greenhills background.
“This school changed my life,” Pullen told about the crowd assembled Tuesday morning in the Campbell Center for the Performing Arts. “I was a student who had lots of potential but was somewhat lost.”
Greenhills helped him find his way, he said. Teachers, classmates, and later on, colleagues at the school all imparted important lessons. The top three: the love of learning, the art of teaching, and the importance of taking responsibility as a leader.
Leadership was apparently on the minds of those in the audience, as well, as their exceptional generosity got the school’s annual fundraising efforts off to a very promising start. By the end of the day donors had raised almost a third of this year’s goal of $350,000 for the Annual Fund. (More information about giving is available here.)
In addition to Pullen, audience members also enjoyed remarks from Head of School Carl Pelofsky, Board of Trustees member Steve Gay, and Maggie McMillan ’14, who talked about how Greenhills’ intimate—but never invasive—atmosphere allows her to thrive.
“If you had told a shy, quiet sixth-grade me that I’d ever give a speech in this room, I’d have been terrified,” she said. “But Greenhills has taught me how to see the world and interact with it.”
More students also spoke, through a new Day in the Life of Greenhills video that brought laughter and knowing nods from the audience.
In the end, Pullen said, Greenhills is a place that’s worthy of the support of its community.
“There’s some magic in these walls. There’s some sweat equity in these walls,” Pullen said. “But it’s annual giving that makes it possible for teachers and students to move forward.”