side menu icon

Girl Scout Gala Raises Thousands in Support of STEAM Programming for Girls

Girl Scout Gala 2022

The new spin on Cookie Gala, GSSEM's signature annual fundraising event, was a wonderful success and will cultivate new art endeavors for girls throughout Metro Detroit.

Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan (GSSEM) hosted the 2022 Girl Scout Gala: Art and Inspiration in the Garden on Sunday, September 11, celebrating the partnership between GSSEM and Shirley Woodson Reid, renowned artist and educator, who will be designing an Arts Curriculum for local Girl Scouts.

The event was co-hosted by Buzz Thomas, Daniel Vander Ley, and Dr. Lorna Thomas.

Twenty-seven local artists contributed to the event and helped raise nearly $30,000—which will go toward GSSEM's STEAM programming.

Originally intended to be the traditional Cookie Gala, the event was created due to supply chain issues during the past cookie season. After brainstorming and collaborating with Reid, a longtime Girl Scout supporter, the outdoor, art-themed, Girl Scout Gala was created to support GSSEM in a new and creative way.

"The cookie shortage we experienced last season had some pretty profound effects," said Sally Freels, Chief Development Officer of GSSEM. "But, in true Girl Scout fashion, we had to be innovative to create something both elegant and fun. We're thrilled that this event welcomed both new and familiar faces to the Girl Scout community."

Girl Scouts has long been leading the way for future leaders by offering badges that spark a girl's imagination and creativity, including 30 arts badges ranging from drawing to screenwriting to web design. Reid has big plans on expanding Girl Scouts' Arts badge curriculum to curate new experiences tailored to local Girl Scouts.

"Expanding the current Arts curriculum is beyond exciting," Freels continued. "These girls are learning how to be future architects, photographers, designers, and painters. The list of possibilities goes on and on."

Top sponsors for the gala include American Axle, Masco, Clark Hill, EY, and MarxModa..

To learn more about the Girl Scout Movement and donation opportunities, please visit