CASA celebrates annual Derby Gala event

Published 1:02 am Saturday, April 29, 2023


More than 200 people turned out April 15 at Danville Country Club for the annual CASA of the Bluegrass Derby Gala.

Year after year, the CASA of the Bluegrass Derby Gala is a night for community engagement and support. Information and networking allow the nonprofit an opportunity to raise funds for the mission of recruiting and training court-appointed special advocates so every child who has experienced abuse, neglect, or dependency can be safe, have a permanent home, and the opportunity to thrive.

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The event brought in individuals from local businesses, court systems and agencies out of all four service regions. CASA honored Judge Bruce Petrie, family court judge for the 50th Judicial Circuit, and his staff, Ramona Gabbard, Andrea Mesplay and William Stevens III. Petrie spoke on behalf of his staff mentioning key characteristics of success and building a team that can stand the test of time. CASA Director Tami Wilson discussed how nurturing and “pouring into children, staff and community” creates a world of positive change. Kentucky is consistently one of the top five states in the nation for child-related abuse/crime.

While the gala also serves as an appreciation event, fundraising efforts such as the silent auction bring in revenue to help support CASA initiatives throughout the year.

Monetary contributions and child-appropriate donations are always accepted at any CASA office.

CASA of the Bluegrass will begin volunteer training in May. Meetings will be held in person at the CASA office, one day a week for eight weeks. CASA also offers a virtual option for those who may have time constraints. CASA has assisted in closing cases and finding permanency for hundreds of children, ensuring that they have a safe and permanent home. By becoming a CASA volunteer, community members join a movement in changing the life of a child. CASA volunteers must 21 or older, pass a background check and commit their time.

For more information, visit, contact Remonica Garr-Conner at 859.936.3510, or email her at