Sunday, January 25, 2004

Volunteer spotlight: Judy Dalambakis

Text by Stephanie Creech Hackett for The Cincinnati Enquirer

Judy Dalambakis
Longtime community volunteer Judy Dalambakis seems to have done a little of everything. Today, the native Cincinnatian and graduate of the University of Cincinnati serves on the board of five organizations, is vice president of nomination for the Cincinnati Ballet, and is chairman of the Board of Enhancement for Playhouse in the Park.

She and her husband, Chris Dalambakis, live in Deerfield Township.

First role as chairwoman: For a fund-raising dinner for the Alzheimer's Association at Peterloon, in Indian Hill. Besides it being the first time she was in charge of an event, it was the association's first fund-raiser.

It must have been a success: Nearly 20 years later, the Alzheimer's Association still hosts an annual fund-raising gala. It outgrew Peterloon and now is held at larger downtown venues.

Secret to success: "The Wow Factor," Dalambakis says. "From the moment people receive the invitation, it has to grab them and entice them. The minute guests get out of their car at an event, they have to feel excited, welcomed and privileged to be there. ... Then they need to go home from the evening having also learned something about the organization and cause behind the event, and feeling good about having supported it."

Mentor: Interior designer Patrick Korb, who introduced her to the Wow Factor concept.

Most rewarding volunteer experience: Serving as the president of the Junior League of Cincinnati "because of the incredible women with whom I worked and the amount they give back to the community."

Most embarrassing public moment: Speaking before the Junior League while dressed as a big yellow bird.

She good-naturedly donned the ridiculous get-up to promote "For the Birds," a Junior League fund-raiser held in conjunction with the Cincinnati Home and Garden Show.

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Volunteer spotlight: Judy Dalambakis
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