Cheryl graduated Bucks County Community College in 2013 with an Associates of Arts degree. Before attending college, Cheryl ran her own home daycare for seven years, and then moved on to work in customer service and accounts receivable for 10 years. She went back to her passion of working with children with her in-home daycare and then as an instructional assistant at the Bucks County Intermediate Unit #22 for the last thirteen years. While working full time is when she received her degree and founded her own 501(c)(3) called The Christmas Gala, a non-profit that serves low income senior citizens throughout Bucks County. Cheryl began the organization out of the living room of her home and has since outgrown it and moved to an office in Bristol Borough. Growing from one program to three, starting with a handful of volunteers to over 50, and as of March 2017, she has resigned her day job and now works full time as the Executive Director of the company.
Cheryl has been nominated for and won many awards for her success with this organization. She and the Gala were finalists for 2017 Bucks Happening List for Power person, volunteer and the annual Christmas Gala event. The Christmas Gala was a finalist for community service from Lower Bucks Champions of Commerce in 2017. She won Bucks County Do-Gooders in 2014, a candidate for the Women of Distinction award in 2015, Bucks Happening Mover and Shaker award 2015, Bucks Happening Best Charity in 2014, and Bucks County Courier Times Emerging Leader 2016, Best of Bucks from Bucks County Courier Times for Non-profit and one of the Best of Bucks for Fundraiser, Bucks Happening 2018 awards for finalist for Best Non-profit, finalist for Best Senior Care, finalist for Best Fundraiser.
I hold a Masters Degree in Education and Certification in Elementary Education, Early Childhood Education, and Special Education. I was a teacher for the School District of Philadelphia for seven years. During those years and following early retirement, I helped to set up and run the Pen Pal program with Senior Citizens and supervise the co-op work program. I have volunteered and taken part in the programs The Christmas Gala has since it originated. As Cheryl’s daughter, I grew up with the example of helping to take care of our elderly and understand the impact it has on them. I have a 6-year-old daughter who chose to help the animals of senior citizens for her school service project and Gobie’s Stocking was created. I live in Levittown, and if I’m not at a softball field with my daughter and niece, I can be found spending time with family, friends and my dog Finnegan Aldea.
Lori has worked in the Skilled Nursing field for 25 years. She is responsible for overseeing the daily business office functions, as well as handling residents’ funds and assisting residents in obtaining Medical Assistance for the nursing home. She resides in Langhorne, PA with her husband and two children.
Colleen Prendergast, Graphic Design Manager
Colleen has over 20 years experience in graphic design: 3 years for Bucks County Community College and 18 years for the Bucks County Courier Times, Intelligencer, Burlington County Times (Calkins Media). She currently runs a media marketing company MediaMinds Inc. in Horsham. Colleen was responsible for all of the marketing materials at the college and performed in many college events as well. At the newspaper, she won over a dozen awards for her work in news, features and sports design. As a freelance designer, she has extended her expertise into social media advertising, as well as logo design, advertising, branding, social media and loves working with small business owners. Colleen is really excited to be a part of The Christmas Gala. She lives in Croydon and loves spending time with her three children Dean, Shannon and Ryan and one very spoiled Boston Terrier.
Helene Kelly, Board Member at Large