The following message was sent March 24 to alumni and friends registered for the 2020 Rock Chalk Ball.
Thank you for generously purchasing tickets and/or hosting a table for the KU Alumni Association’s 25th annual Rock Chalk Ball scheduled for Saturday, May 2, at the LEX event space in downtown Kansas City.
Unfortunately, the Association must cancel the event. As I shared in my March 13 message to all alumni, the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic prevents us from gathering as a Jayhawk family. The Association has canceled all in-person events through May 12, in coordination with the University of Kansas and following the guidance of public health officials.
In addition to gathering Jayhawks to celebrate KU, proceeds from the Rock Chalk Ball allow us to make investments to strengthen the University of Kansas, connect a global network of Jayhawks, and sustain a strong, vibrant alumni association.
As we explore options for uniting Jayhawks online through a virtual event, we ask you that you choose one of the following options for your ticket and/or table purchase and send your request to Michelle Lang at firstname.lastname@example.org.
1. Request a full refund of your purchase
2. Donate your purchase as a 100% tax-deductible gift to sustain the Association’s efforts to strengthen the University, including the Jayhawk Career Network, Student Alumni Network, Advocacy, Outreach in Kansas, and student recruitment
3. Forward your purchase as your reservation for the 2021 Rock Chalk Ball
If you have not submitted payment at this time, you do not need to reach out to Michelle. We appreciate your interest and hope you will join us next year.
As the Association’s senior staff team continues to work with the national Board of Directors and the Kansas City Network Board to determine next steps, we will post new information at rockchalkball.org and on our social media channels. Additional information on the KU community’s responses to the pandemic can be found at kualumni.org/coronavirus and coronavirus.ku.edu.
We deeply appreciate your KU loyalty, and we extend our warmest wishes to you and your loved ones at this difficult time.
For the second consecutive year, Best Western Plus West Lawrence, one of six hotel properties in the Wichita-based Hospitality Development of America portfolio, has partnered with the University of Kansas Alumni Association. The hotel, which opened in fall 2018, is adjacent to the Rock Chalk Park complex in west Lawrence and will serve as a presenting sponsor and exclusive hotel partner of KU’s 107th Homecoming, Oct. 19-26.
Best Western Plus West Lawrence also will support the Student Alumni Network and the Alumni Association’s legacy student recruitment receptions for students and parents when they visit campus this year. In addition, the hotel will provide silent auction donations for two of the Association’s largest annual fundraising events, the Rock Chalk Ball in Kansas City and the Jayhawk Roundup in Wichita, and will offer Association members an exclusive discount on hotel stays.
“Homecoming is one of KU’s greatest traditions for students and alumni, and we’re thrilled to receive support from Best Western Plus West Lawrence to make this year’s celebration the best in years,” said Heath Peterson, KU Alumni Association president. “Thanks to this partnership, the Alumni Association also will continue to provide a host of programs and services for Jayhawks on the Hill and beyond.”
“As a proud KU alumnus, I fully understand the value of working with the KU Alumni Association to showcase our Lawrence hotel property to alumni, donors, parents and fans. The Association provides creative avenues to market our hotel with our investment going directly to supporting alumni and student programs. We are excited for Best Western Plus West Lawrence to be Jayhawks’ ‘home’ when they are in town to celebrate the great tradition of KU Homecoming,” said Steve Martens, c’75, CEO of The Martens Companies and its hotel development and management subsidiaries. Martens also is a Life Member of the Alumni Association and a Presidents Club donor.
Nearly 550 Jayhawks gathered April 27 to celebrate the University of Kansas at the 24th-annual Rock Chalk Ball, which is hosted by the Alumni Association and the Greater Kansas City Network.
Local news anchor John Holt, j’81, l’84, and digital reporter Crystle Lampitt, c’10, served as emcees. KU head football coach Les Miles and his wife, Kathy, were honorary chairs of the event.
The Bartle Hall red carpet was filled with KU friends, fans and alumni posing for pictures before moving into the Grand Ballroom for dinner. The evening festivities also included live music and silent and live auctions, which raised nearly $110,000 and featured a wooden Jayhawk carving from Kansaw Carvings artist Dan Besco, a trip to Greece, a ride in Crown Toyota’s Jayhawk car and a KU T-shirt quilt.
Thank you to the event’s title sponsor, Intrust Bank, and the presenting sponsors— Charlie Hustle, KJO Media and Gohagan and Company— for their contributions to this year’s ball.
Official photos from the event, courtesy of Steve Puppe, are available here and may be downloaded for personal use. If you attended this year’s Rock Chalk Ball, we’d love to have your feedback—please complete our survey.
Every year, Jayhawks show Kansas City how to put on a party. This year was no different.
The 24th annual Rock Chalk Ball, “Always a Jayhawk,” featured John Holt, j’81, l’84, and Crystle Lampitt, c’10, as hosts. Head football coach Les Miles and his wife, Kathy Miles, served as honorary chairs. Funds raised at this year’s event will support the Jayhawk Career Network, which has already created incredible lifelong connections among students and alumni.
Check out some of our favorite posts from a special night in Kansas City.
Thank you to @INTRUSTBank, the Title Sponsor of this year’s event.
“We are excited to expand our partnership to support the great tradition of #RockChalkBall in Kansas City.” – Beth Easter, KU alumna and INTRUST Bank commercial relationship manager pic.twitter.com/6H5iwBhcCK
Thomas Angel’s journey has been anything but normal.
A decade of overseas deployments, microfracture surgery, and an application to the University of Kansas on a whim have all contributed to his dream of becoming a neurosurgeon.
Thanks to the power of the Jayhawk Career Network, Angel connected with H.C. Palmer, a veteran and retired physician.
“I just really think that our relationship, no matter what, is not a medicine mentorship,” Angel says. “I think it’s a life mentorship.”
Palmer, c’59, m’63, and Angel discussed their relationship in a video that premiered at the 2019 Rock Chalk Ball.
Thomas and H.C.’s story is just one of many mentorships made possible through the Jayhawk Career Network. The Jayhawk Career Network gives students and alumni access to career resources, jobs, events, programming and connections at every stage of their career. Services include KU Mentoring, a job board, informational articles and more. For more information about the Jayhawk Career Network, contact Kristi Laclé, assistant vice president for the Jayhawk Career Network, at email@example.com.
INTRUST Bank, a longtime financial services provider in the Midwest, is serving as the title sponsor of the 2019 Rock Chalk Ball, the University of Kansas Alumni Association’s largest annual fundraising event, April 27 at the Kansas City Convention Center. Hosted by the Greater Kansas City Alumni Network, the event raises funds for the Alumni Association’s alumni and student programs, including the Jayhawk Career Network.
INTRUST Bank is also the exclusive banking sponsor for the 2019 “Game Day at the Adams” football tailgates at the Adams Alumni Center. The financial institution, which for decades has partnered with the Alumni Association to provide Jayhawk credit cards to KU alumni, will also support the Association with a Presidents Club contribution.
“The KU Alumni Association has developed a strong relationship with INTRUST Bank through the years, and we’re thrilled to continue our partnership with them,” said Heath Peterson, Association president. “Thanks to their generous support, we will be able to deliver outstanding programs and services for Jayhawks in Lawrence, Kansas City and beyond.”
“INTRUST has a long history of working with the KU Alumni Association and we’re proud to continue that partnership by supporting KU alumni, fans and friends around the world,” said Beth Easter, a KU alumnus and INTRUST Bank commercial relationship manager. “We are excited to expand our partnership to support the great tradition of Rock Chalk Ball in Kansas City and engage alumni during the upcoming football season at ‘Game Day at the Adams.’”
KJO Media, a video-production company based in Kansas City, is a presenting sponsor of the 2019 Rock Chalk Ball, the University of Kansas Alumni Association’s largest annual fundraising event, April 27 at the Kansas City Convention Center. Hosted by the Greater Kansas City Alumni Network, the event raises funds for the Alumni Association’s alumni and student programs, including the Jayhawk Career Network.
As a presenting sponsor of this year’s event, KJO Media will provide professional media and video services and help capture the spirit of the 24th-annual KU Kansas City tradition.
“We’re thrilled to partner with KJO Media, an innovative Kansas City company founded by a fellow Jayhawk,” said Heath Peterson, Association president. “Thanks to their generous support, we will be able to share the Rock Chalk Ball experience with Jayhawks near and far, and expand programs and services for alumni and students.”
T.J. Kilian, president and executive producer at KJO Media, is a 2001 KU School of Journalism graduate. “As a proud KU alumnus, I’m excited to work with my alma mater and introduce the KJO Media team to one of the Alumni Association’s greatest annual events,” said Kilian, a Life Member of the Alumni Association. “The Rock Chalk Ball presents a great opportunity for us to support programs that benefit Jayhawks in Kansas City and across the country.”
Rock Chalk Ball, the annual celebration of KU and its alumni is set for April 27 at Bartle Hall.
Sasha Flores Boulware is entering her third year as a Rock Chalk Ball chair, after attending the ball for years with her husband Al, c’98, l’02, g’02.
Boulware, c’98, g’00, earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology and remained at KU to complete her MBA. She formerly worked for Pfizer and Accenture Foundation and is currently a part-time consultant. Sasha also has volunteered for Jayhawks for Higher Education and the Emily Taylor Center’s advisory board.
We reached out to Boulware, who lives in Fairway, to hear about her experiences at KU and with Rock Chalk Ball.
Why did you want to be a co-chair of Rock Chalk Ball?
The ball is one of my favorite events and it never disappoints. Every year there is a new twist on what is offered to attendees. The detail I’m most excited about this year is the beneficiary of the Fund-A-Need, the Jayhawk Career Network. This tool gives Jayhawks the ability to truly connect and help each other far beyond their days on the hill and I love that!
What is your favorite Rock Chalk Ball memory?
Watching Dan Besco do a live carving of a Jayhawk in 2017 was amazing. I will always remember his excitement that day when he finished and presented the sculpture. That positive vibe is what Rock Chalk Ball is all about!
What advice do you have for young professionals looking to take the next step in their careers?
Networking and more networking, and not just with people in your current industry. I found that when I was ready for a change, it was the people I had meaningful relationships with who took a chance on me. It’s also how I learned about different opportunities that I wouldn’t have otherwise considered.
Hosted by the KU Alumni Association and the Greater Kansas City Network, Rock Chalk Ball unites Jayhawks in the nation’s largest KU community and raises funds for Association programs to advocate for KU; communicate to alumni and friends in all media; recruit students and volunteers; serve current students, alumni and KU; and unite all Jayhawks.
For the third consecutive year, Kansas City-based Charlie Hustle has partnered with the University of Kansas Alumni Association. The apparel company, which offers distinctive collegiate and KU-themed designs, will serve as a presenting sponsor of the 2019 Rock Chalk Ball, the Alumni Association’s largest annual fundraiser, April 27 at the Kansas City Convention Center. The event raises funds for alumni and student programs, including the Jayhawk Career Network.
Charlie Hustle also continues to work with the Alumni Association on its 2019 Member APPreciation Month, a promotion that highlights the Association’s mobile app and celebrates member loyalty with a unique Charlie Hustle KU T-shirt, available exclusively to members only in February. In addition, the relationship includes marketing of the Charlie Hustle KU Collegiate Collection throughout the year in alumni communications.
“We’re thrilled to renew our partnership with Charlie Hustle, whose exclusive T-shirts are always a huge hit with our members,” said Heath Peterson, KU Alumni Association president. “Not only that, but this sponsorship allows the Association to expand critical programs and services that benefit all Jayhawks.”
“For the past two years, we’ve been proud to expand our partnership and relationship with the KU Alumni Association,” said Chase McAnulty, owner of Charlie Hustle and a Presidents Club and Life Member of the Alumni Association. “We strive to evoke happiness and nostalgia through our brand and partnering with the Association allows us to do just that.”
Jayhawks celebrated their alma mater’s past, present and future at the 23rd annual Rock Chalk Ball, held April 28 at the Kansas City Convention Center. This year’s event concluded a week of inauguration festivities for Chancellor Douglas A. Girod.
Hosted by the Alumni Association and the Greater Kansas City Network, the annual event unites Jayhawks in the nation’s largest KU community and raises funds for Association programs to advocate for KU; communicate to alumni and friends in all media; recruit students and volunteers; serve current students, alumni and KU; and unite all Jayhawks.
Chancellor Girod and his wife, Susan, served as honorary event chairs. Curtis Marsh, j’92, director of KU Info and the DeBruce Center, lent his voice—and his wealth of KU knowledge and traditions—as this year’s emcee. The event featured silent and live auctions and the enthusiastic sounds of the Patrick Lentz Band, one of Kansas City’s premier cover bands. The KU Libraries exhibit, History of the Jayhawk, was on display during the cocktail hour.
Sasha Flores Boulware, c’98, g’00, and Billy Marshall, c’00, served as network co-chairs for the event.
In keeping with the Alumni Association’s mission to strengthen KU, proceeds from the 2018 Rock Chalk Ball will be used to benefit legacy student recruitment and student programs. Proceeds from the Fund-A-Need portion of the auction will benefit the Jayhawk Career Network. A new KU Alumni Mentoring Program will be launched this fall to give students easy access to the power of our alumni base.
Thank you to the event’s title sponsor, Tickets For Less, and the presenting sponsors—Boulevard Brewing, Charlie Hustle and Gohagan— for their contributions to the live auction.
Check out some of our favorite social posts from Rock Chalk Ball below! Official photos from the event, courtesy of Steve Puppe, are available here and may be downloaded for personal use. If you attended this year’s Rock Chalk Ball, we’d love to have your feedback—please complete our survey.