For the fifth year in a row, Ravenscroft’s student-led fundraising team for Crucial Catch has been recognized as the top fundraising school in the nation, raising more than $39,000. They once again won the prestigious Pink Cleat Award, which was presented by the Carolina Panthers’ director of community relations, Riley Fields, on Friday, April 29.
Since 2017, Ravenscroft teams have raised almost $165,000 for Crucial Catch, a partnership between the American Cancer Society and the National Football League to help more people catch cancer early and address the unequal burden of cancer in underserved communities. The initiative promotes prevention and early detection of cancer and increases access to lifesaving cancer screenings. Crucial Catch teams have raised more than $22 million since 2009.
The team’s members for this fundraising cycle are Simone Baldwin ’22, Bea Holdstock ’22, Georgia Winston ’22, Amber Stiefel ’23, Olivia Hitt ’23, Harrison Poole ’23, Jacob Suh ’23, Elena Mathan ’24, Noah Suh ’24, Alex Olander ’24, Grant Corkum ’25, Sophie Yoon ’25, Sasha Olander ’25 and Jack Hollingshead ’25.
Georgia Winston, who has been involved with the Crucial Catch program since her freshman year and a co-captain since her sophomore year, said she has learned about fundraising and leadership as well as her ability to make an impact through the program.
“This was my first experience in a major leadership role, not only becoming more aware of myself as a leader, but also understanding the importance of lifesaving screening to catch cancer early and spreading this awareness to others has been so impactful,” she said. “I am very proud of the entire team and what we have achieved. We have raised over $130,000 these last four years, and our funds will help save lives!”
Co-captain Harrison Poole noted that the legacy of excellence created by previous teams served as strong motivation.
“Each year our team has the goal of surpassing the amount of money raised from the previous year. This is a difficult challenge, as raising such a large amount of money can be challenging as it is, and with the hopes of surpassing the previous year´s goal makes it even harder. An additional goal of ours is in fact to lead the country in fundraising,” he said. “This may seem like an outlandish goal, however, for the past five years we have accomplished this goal, and it seems each year we are the clear forefront for fundraising.”
Jacob Suh, the third co-captain, who is in his first year on the team, said the “welcoming culture” of returning members made his experience a very positive one despite these pressures.
“Being part of Crucial Catch teaches you how to be a part of a family and work together to a common goal, while also raising awareness for cancer screening,” he said. “I hope I can pass down all that I have learned this year to the next leaders and equip them with what they need to run a successful team. My hopes and dreams for the future are to help as much as I can to make the program run smoothly.”
“The American Cancer Society relies on the dedication of passionate and committed volunteer leaders like these students to push our mission forward,” said Rachel Urban, executive director the American Cancer Society in central and eastern North Carolina, in a press release about the team’s success. “Our team and our organization is proud to have Ravenscroft as a leader, not only in and across North Carolina but in and across the country, to excel in fundraising efforts. We are so grateful.”
Watch the Carolina Panthers’ Riley Fields’ remarks and presentation of the Pink Cleat Award in Jones Theatre on April 29.