Crime Stoppers of Houston luncheon

Crime Stoppers CEO Rania Mankarious with Dave and Laura Ward (Courtesy Crime Stoppers of Houston)

More than 430 guests joined Crime Stoppers of Houston on Thursday, May 3rd, 2018 at the Royal Sonesta Hotel for their annual Houston’s Heroes Awards Luncheon to honor and celebrate outstanding community members who have made incredible contributions to make Houston and surrounding counties a safer place to live, work, learn and play.

The gathering, which serves as a vital fundraiser for Crime Stoppers, raised over $145,000 to directly fund the critical crime prevention programs and public safety initiatives delivered by the non-profit in our communities and schools.

Dana Tyson, host of Sunny 99.1 Morning Show lent her support as the mistress of ceremonies and led the afternoon festivities which included opening remarks from Houston Media Icon Dave Ward, a blessing from Sister Jane Meyer with St. Agnes Academy, followed by remarks from Crime Stoppers CEO Rania Mankarious.

Each of the 2018 Houston’s Heroes honored have proven to be positive contributors to our community through their long-standing support of crime prevention and public safety initiatives that make Houston and Texas safer for all.

Five distinguished awards were presented to the following:

The Johnny Klevenhagen Crime Stoppers Award – Constable Ted Heap, Harris County Precinct 5: Constable Heap exemplifies everything this award strives to highlight through his extensive law enforcement having started his career nearly 35 years ago. Following Hurricane Harvey, Heap helped create and launch the Harris County Animal Cruelty Taskforce, a proactive and streamlined approach to investigating animal cruelty reports.

The Leon Goldstein Award – Senator Joan Huffman: Senator Huffman has been a tireless public servant for over three decades, tackling many public safety issues like the protection of our children, improving victim’s protections, human trafficking, and more.

The Leon Goldstein Award – Former Crime Stoppers Chairman Fenner Weller: Fenner is a true example of servant leadership and the Crime Stoppers building would not have been possible without his incredible contributions to the capital campaign and much more.

The Leon Goldstein Award – Senator John Whitmire: Senator Whitmire is a tireless public servant, working on initiatives involving mental health, criminal justice, victims of crime, in addition to bringing needed changes to the adult and juvenile justice systems.

The Leon Goldstein Award – Representative John Zerwas, M.D.: Representative Zerwas is a tireless public servant who understands the importance of health and safety, and his perspective is critical at a time when health and human services is one of the fastest-growing areas.

The Leiv Platou Award – Alan Helfman President of River Oaks Chrysler Jeep Dodge and Ram Helfman Ford Helfman Fiat Alfa Romeo Maserati: Alan has been involved in the Houston community for over 30 years, has led numerous charity fundraisers, and is dedicated to the men and women who serve and protect us all.

The Corporate Partnership Award – Scott Aronstein President of Connectivity Source, one of Sprint’s largest nationwide dealers in the United States and Sprint Corporation: Scott, Connectivity Source and Sprint are committed to public safety and cyber safety – their meaningful partnership with Crime Stoppers is leading by example by offering a critically needed program that keeps us all safe online.

The Safe School Award – Donae Cangelosi Chramosta, The Vintage Contessa: Donae has worked with many Houston non-profits and individuals focused on issues that affect our children. Her involvement as a Crime Stoppers Board Member has made a transformational difference in introduce Crime Stoppers to area schools in Houston to receive free Safe School programming for students.

While the focus of the afternoon was to honor these incredible partners, Crime Stoppers was completely blown away when Alan Helfman announced that he was gifting the organization a brand new 2018 Dodge Ram. Rania was speechless by this very generous gift which will allow their Safe School Institute team to continue to grow and serve many more children.

“This luncheon was particularly meaningful this year as it reflected men and women from completely different walks of life coming together in the interest of public safety. From law enforcement to business owners to elected officials to entrepreneurial mothers, all stood together to say that the public safety of our homes, schools, businesses, neighborhoods and neighbors is requires and deserves our attention. What a fitting message from the collaborative forward minded community that is the heart of Houston,” shares Crime Stoppers CEO Rania Mankarious.

Thursday’s celebration was supported by many individuals, community partners and generous sponsors, including long-time Safety Partner Aramco Services Company; Strake Foundation, Michelle and Mike Heinz, Bud Light/Silver Eagle Distributors, Connectivity Source/Sprint, H-E-B, KROGER, Lawrence I. Levy/Gillson-Logenbaugh Foundation, Premier Protection & Investigations, Russell and Glenda Gordy, The Vintage Contessa and Times Past, abc13, Alan Helfman President of River Oaks Chrysler Jeep Dodge and Ram Helfman Ford Helfman Fiat Alfa Romeo Maserati, Bryan Beene/John Daugherty Realtors, Chip B. Lewis, Constable Ted Heap, Dedicated Divas for Donae, Elva and Truett Akin, Houston Apartment Association, Houston PetSet, Integrity Bank, Janet and Commissioner R. Jack Cagle, K & S Wealth Advisors, Mike and Carole Wilson, Randalls Food Markets, Toni Lawrence, Tracy and Harry Faulkner, Union Pacific Railroad, and Wilson & Franco.

Among supporters were Senator John Whitmire, Russell Gordy, Fred Zeidman, Dave and Laura Ward, Crime Stoppers Chairman Hazem Ahmed, Lauren and Reese Weller, Hillary and Blake Helfman, Steve Mach, Jerri Duddlesten Moore, Charlene Slack, Vicki Rizzo, Brigitte Kalai, Sippi Khurana, Maha Rasheed, Susan Boggio, Tama Lundquist, Tena Faust, Mandy Kao, Joy Sewing, Ugo Tombolini, Twila Carter, Jeff Vaden, BJ and Joe Hudson, Sherri Zucker and Brittany Zucker, Melissa Davis, John Crapitto, Yvette Webb, Linda Adkins, Austin Arceneaux and Jacquie Baly.

Notable guests include, City of Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, City of Houston Director of Homeland Security George Buenik, Commissioner Jack Cagle, Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg, Harris County Attorney Vince Ryan, Harris County Clerk Stan Stanart, FBI Special Agent in Charge Perrye Turner, Harris County Constable Precinct One Alan Rosen, Pasadena Police Assistant Chief K. Wingerson, Houston Police Department Lieutenant Tiffany Jefferson, Harris County Sheriff’s Office Assistant Chief Tim Navarre Harris County Fire Marshall Laurie Christensen, Council Members Jack Christie, Michael Kubosh, Mike Knox and Brenda Stardig.

If you would like to learn about Crime Stoppers of Houston, how to get involved or donate to their mission programs, visit www.crime-stoppers.org or call 713-521-4600.

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