The Buccaneers Family Cookbook sold more than 5,000 copies, leading to a check that was big in more ways than one
The wildly successful Family Cookbook project reached a meaningful conclusion on Tuesday when a check for more than $75,000 was presented to the PACE Center for Girls
"Sometimes all it takes is just one great idea…and a little hard work, of course."
The idea to which Dr. Angela Glazer refers was indeed a great one: The 2005 Buccaneers Family Cookbook. The hard work that was put into making that idea a success now has the potential to positively impact many young lives.
On Tuesday, Angela Glazer, wife of Tampa Bay Buccaneers Executive Vice President Joel Glazer, and Cindy Gruden, wife of Buccaneers Head Coach Gruden, attended the "Portraits of PACE" fundraising breakfast in order to present the PACE Center for Girls with a check for $75,536.68. That sizeable donation is the end result of a nine-month project that began with that simple cookbook concept.
Just before the beginning of the 2005 NFL season, the Buccaneers unveiled the Family Cookbook, which was sponsored by Pewter Partner Raymond James. The book was Cindy Gruden's brainchild and it featured recipes and photos from players, coaches, staff members and cheerleaders. Cindy Gruden and Angela Glazer, both members of the PACE Center for Girls' auxiliary board, recognized immediately that the cookbook could serve as a great fundraiser for the hardworking charitable organization.
The PACE Center provides at-risk girls an opportunity for a better future through education, counseling, training and advocacy. By promoting and enabling young women to complete their education, build self-esteem and develop personal, social and family relationship skills, PACE helps the girls in the program become productive citizens through responsible decision-making. The programs of the PACE Center are designed to help troubled girls succeed both in school and in life. PACE is the first and only prevention and early intervention program of its kind in Florida that offers a continuum of services designed to meet the special needs of girls.
"After being introduced to PACE nearly four years ago, it was crystal clear to me how dedicated all of you are in your organization," Glazer stated during Tuesday's check presentation. "We at the Buccaneers feel blessed to have been touched by your spirit. We know this money will be used to further develop the hearts and souls of the PACE girls."
Jon Gruden took advantage of the moment to address the girls of the PACE Center who were in attendance at the breakfast.
"We are so happy to present this check to you and to know that we were a part of something that will affect you," Gruden said. "Keep strong, fight the fight and know you're our heroes."
The Buccaneers Family Cookbook, which sold more than 5,000 copies in six months, primarily through purchases on Buccaneers.com, would not have become a reality if it weren't for the sponsorship of Raymond James. Hunt James, son of Raymond James CEO Tom James, attended the breakfast where he too beamed with pride as the substantial check was handed over to the PACE Center.
"Both Raymond James and the Buccaneers feel it's important to remain active in the community," said James. "We were told about the powerful things that the PACE Center was doing for girls, so when we heard about the opportunity to be a part of the cookbook project it made a lot of sense."
According to PACE Executive Director Chantel Griffin Stampfer, the money generated from the Buccaneers Family Cookbook will enable PACE to continue to have degreed, licensed, and certified staff working with the girls in their program. PACE will also use the funds to help pay for student incentives, meals and supplies.
"The Buccaneer Family Cookbook not only raised needed funds for the PACE Center for Girls, but it helped to raise awareness in our community," said Griffin Stampfer. "We will use the $75,536 to help pay for the high intensity student programming that we offer. The PACE Center for Girls is thrilled and grateful for the generosity of the Buccaneers. A special thanks to Dr. Angela Glazer and all the Buccaneers who worked so hard to make the cookbook a reality."