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Annual Fundraising Luncheon

Presented by

Join us in Support of Widowed
Men and Women in our Community

Thursday, October 3, 2024

Help us celebrate a national day of observance in support of the more than 15 million widowed people in the U.S.

11:30 - 1:00 PM

11:00 – 11:30 – Doors Open & Networking        11:30 – 1:00 – Luncheon & Program

Metropolitan Ballroom

5418 Wayzata Blvd.
Golden Valley, MN 55435

When life changes, Wings for Widows changes lives.  Founded in 2018, Wings for Widows provides personalized financial coaching and education to help widowed people nationwide reclaim financial stability.  Financial stability after the loss of a spouse means family stability and an opportunity for a brighter future.  More than 3,000 people become widowed every day in the U.S. and 70% do not have someone to turn to for trusted advice.  Wings for Widows provides men and women in crisis the access to professional advice when they need it the most, whether they can afford it or not. 

Special Guests

Lauren Leamanczyk

 Investigative reporter and anchor on KARE 11 News at 5 pm

Pat Miles

Author, Hall of Fame Broadcaster, and former WCCO-TV and KARE 11 Anchor

Don Shelby

Renowned journalist and broadcaster, most notably for WCCO-TV

Chris Bentley

Founder & CEO, Wings for Widows, author and educator

Meet Keynote Speaker Pat Miles

Esteemed for her professionalism by viewers, listeners, and her colleagues, the versatile Pat Miles became one of the Minneapolis region’s premier television news anchors and radio talk hosts.

After earning her master’s degree in journalism at the University of Missouri, Miles worked in radio and television news in Colorado before joining WCCO TV in 1978 as a reporter and weekend anchor. Her intelligent reporting and authoritative delivery soon brought her to the anchor desk of WCCO’s 5:00 PM and 10:00 PM newscasts. She covered every major news event for WCCO TV but was most proud of A Time to Weep, her documentary on the famine in Africa. In 1990, she moved to KARE TV, where she anchored the 5:00 PM and 6:00 PM newscasts and developed A Pat Miles Special, using her writing and interviewing prowess to tell the stories of notable Minnesotans. When she left TV news in 2001, she fulfilled a lifelong dream by becoming the host of The Pat Miles Show weekday mornings on WCCO Radio.

A role model for women in the industry, she has received numerous honors for her work in broadcasting and the community, including the National Television Academy’s Silver Circle Award.

After Pat lost her husband to cancer in 2019, she found healing by writing about grief and loss and planning her own mortality. In Before All is Said and Done, Pat navigates the realities surrounding dying and widowhood in our culture. She reveals how her husband’s untimely death deeply affected every aspect of her life and parallels how other women have dealt with the grief, financial upsets, and daily life changes that come with such a painful loss.

By combining real-life anecdotal experiences with practical information from experts, Pat Miles and Suzanne Watson have created an honest, inspiring guide to preparing women and couples for the emotional, practical, and financial impact of losing a spouse or partner.

Meet Special Guest Don Shelby

Don Shelby is widely considered the most decorated and honored local television journalist in the country. He has won three national Emmys, the Columbia-duPont, the Scripps-Howard, the National Distinguished Service Award from the Society of Professional Journalists and he has been honored twice with the Pulitzer Prize of broadcasting, the George Foster Peabody.

Don continues his 45 year career in reporting after retiring from daily journalism in November of 2010. He continues to write for MinnPost, on the online daily, and is often read in Salon and dozens of other internet news aggregators.

Don was inducted into the Broadcasters Hall of Fame in 2008 and into the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Silver Circle. He was named the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Humanitarian of the Year, and honored by B’nai Brith with the Great American Traditions award. In 2010 he was named Distinguished Minnesotan, an honor he shares with other luminaries such as Sigurd Olson and Will Steger.

Don’s reporting has taken him around the globe from Romania to Egypt, Venezuela, Australia and the Arctic Circle. He originated the I-team concept of investigative reporting and served on the board of directors of Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE), the county’s preeminent investigative journalism organization.

He has served as a war correspondent covering conflicts ranging from the Yom Kippur War in 1973 to the war in Iraq in 2009. Major General Richard Nash, commander of forces in the southern half of Iraq called Don, “…our Ernie Pyle,” referring to the noted combat correspondent of World War II.

Don is the author of The Season Never Ends, a collection of stories about teamwork. It is currently ranked as the #2 best seller in the coaching section of Amazon.com. He is in the middle of writing his second book on the developing failure of American journalism to meet the needs of voting citizens in a democracy.

Don is an avid outdoorsman and primitive survival specialists. He spends much of his free time climbing ice falls, mountains, hiking and canoeing his beloved BWCAW. He has a wife and three grown daughters.

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