Ozzie Newsome Benefit Luncheon Gallery

The Firehouse Shelter is proud to announce that nearly $47,000 was raised from its first-ever summer benefit luncheon on Friday, June 21st. A packed house of nearly 250 persons attended the event that was held at The Harbert Center from 11 am - 1 pm. Ozzie Newsome, GM of the 2013 NFL Super Bowl Champion Baltimore Ravens, was the featured speaker. A riveted crowd hung on his every word for the duration of his 30 minute presentation.

The guests were treated to a special testimony from Michael Fantroy who shared about how The Firehouse Shelter and its pre-treatment recovery program have become building blocks in his life that have allowed him to reach his dream of earning his college degree, coaching college football players, becoming happily married to his wife, Dr. Linda Fantroy, and helping others.

Victor Smith, Board President, spoke about the impact the various shelter and housing programs are having on our community. Steve Freeman, Executive Director of The Firehouse Shelter for the past 17+ years touched on his passion for serving the homeless and how vital it is to us all that we reunite these men with their families. In addition, Doug Kovash, Development Director, challenged the crowd to increase their commitment in the coming year to serving Birmingham's most vulnerbale citizens.

The event emcee was FOX 6 Sports Anchor Jeh Jeh Pruitt. Jeh Jeh raised the energy level in the room right from the start by leading the live auction bidding for footballs autographed by former Alabama and Auburn football greats. This five minute speed-bidding raised nearly $5,000 as 25 footballs were purchased. Bobbie Knight, Alabama Power Company VP, was the grand prize winner, which entitled her to 4 tickets to a Baltimore Ravens football game and round trip airfare from Birmingham!

Specials thanks go out to the 39 corporations and individuals that sponsored or supported the event. Over $47,000 was raised and all of the proceeds will benefit The Firehouse Shelter housing programs which empower homeless men to achieve their full potential..