On Friday, September 23, guests and members of the CHICAT community gathered at the Gene Siskel Film Center for an invitation-only reception and screening of the award-winning documentary, Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise. After the screening, visitors were encouraged to meet and greet the film’s co-director, Bob Hercules, in a loose, conversational question and answer forum.
The evening began with a general assembly of CHICAT supporters and friends. Interspersed between light refreshments and social networking, the attendees were treated to speeches prepared by guest speakers Steve Sarowitz and Bill Strickland. Sarowitz, one of the film’s primary funders and chair of the Chicago Center for Arts and Technology’s board of directors, regaled guests with anecdotes about the film’s production before tossing the conversation to Mr. Strickland. Mr. Strickland, the founder of the Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild and creator of the arts and technology model CHICAT embodies, appealed to guests for their continued contributions to the development and success of the Chicago Center for Arts and Technology.
After the showing, guests were invited to the main assembly hall for a raffle. Proceeds raised during the draw were donated to the Chicago Center for Arts and Technology development project. For those who were interested in learning more about the film, Mr. Hercules and Mr. Sarowitz were available to answer questions.
The screening was a rousing success, garnering more than two hundred and fifty guests, including Richard Lariviere, the President of Chicago’s Field Museum, and Naim Obeid, the Chief Executive Officer of Israel’s Akko Center for Arts and Technology. More important, enthusiasm for CHICAT permeated the space, resulting in new friends and monetary contributions toward the organization’s groundbreaking.