Keynote speaker Kathleen Kennedy Townsend
By Irish Echo Staff
The upcoming third annual gala for the HOPE Foundation will celebrate the foundation’s 20th anniversary while honoring founder Maureen Forrest for her twenty years of service.
The foundation, which carries out its work in support of marginalized children in Kolkata, (formerly Calcutta) in India will be holding the gala at Manhattan Manor, West 52nd Street in Manhattan on Thursday, January 30 from 7 to 10 p.m.
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The keynote speaker will be Kathleen Kennedy Townsend. Entertainment will be provided by Mary Courtney and the master of ceremonies will be George Heslin.
Maureen Forrest founded the organization, both an American and Irish charitable organization, after visiting Mother Teresa in the 1990s.
She returned to Ireland determined to fundraise for a protection home for girls and set up The Hope Foundation in 1999.
Since then, said a release, “her dedication, passion, drive and commitment have inspired thousands of people all over the world to fundraise for Hope’s 60 projects and to visit Kolkata.”
Keynote speaker Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, the oldest of Bobby and Ethel Kennedy’s children, is the Director of Retirement Security at the Economic Policy Institute, and currently serves as a research professor at Georgetown University where she founded the Center for Retirement Initiatives. She has also served as chair of the Governor’s Retirement Security Task Force for the State of Maryland.
Kennedy Townsend was the State of Maryland’s first woman lieutenant governor, from 1995 to 2003. Prior to being elected lieutenant governor, Townsend served as deputy assistant attorney general of the United States.
An honors graduate of Harvard University, Townsend received her law degree from the University of New Mexico where she was a member of the law review. She has received 14 honorary degrees. Townsend’s book, “Failing America’s Faithful: How Today’s Churches Mixed God with Politics and Lost Their Way,” was published by Warner Books in 2007.
“Kathleen gives talks worldwide. We are very honored to have her on the evening,” said the Foundation release.
For more information on the event and sponsorship opportunities, or to book a ticket contact
Mary Reed [email protected] or (516)-467-6030.