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GKAS gala offers chance to have fun, uplift key program

September 15, 2014 San Antonio — Put on your dancing shoes and support a number of GKAS-related programs at the ADA Foundation Give Kids A Smile Gala on Oct. 10 from 7-11:30 p.m. at the San Antonio Marriott Rivercenter.

Every dollar contributed to the ADA Foundation Give Kids A Smile fund, including those from gala ticket sales, support a range of programs that help improve the oral health of kids in need.

The extra value for those buying gala tickets is a chance to do good while having a good time. The gala is also the ADA Foundation's opportunity to thank individuals who work tirelessly to support the Foundation and the GKAS program, including Dr. Charles Norman, ADA president, and the ADA Board of Trustees.

The ADA Foundation also will recognize the 2014 Smile Champion award recipients during the gala. Cindy Hearn of CareCredit and top-notch GKAS volunteer Dr. Michael Shreck of New York are the 2014 awardees (see related story, Page 14).

The Give Kids A Smile Fund, started in 2007, supports Give Kids A Smile expansion activities and events nationwide, GKAS/NASCAR screening and oral health education events, and the GKAS Community Leadership Development Institute.

Joan Allen, executive director of the original Give Kids A Smile in St. Louis, indicated that the ADA Foundation's support of the GKAS institute is intrinsic to its existence and its ability to create GKAS leaders around the country.

"We could never widen our stance in the United States, as we expand Give Kids A Smile, without this kind of support," Ms. Allen said. "We're creating a network of resources throughout the country. I'm meeting people from all over the country, and these are leaders in their communities. These people know that they are not only leaders in their communities, but they have become leaders to us, here in the Give Kids A Smile movement. That has been a great network of people."

The ADAF GKAS Gala raised about $82,000 in new funds for Give Kids A Smile in 2012 and 2013.

Tickets are $250, with $100 of each ticket being a charitable donation to the ADA Foundation GKAS Fund. Purchase tickets through the ADA 2014 website at For more information, call the ADA Foundation at 1-312-440-2547.