By Jerry Del Priore
After the Phil Taitt Show had its first Dream, Reach, Inspire event at St. Francis College in Brooklyn last year, which was a resounded success, according to several people who attended the 2016 show, host Phil Taitt was nervous that the second night might not live up to the hype.
But he said Dream, Reach, Inspire 2017, held at the same site as last year’s event, turned out to be just as good, if not better, than the first.
“I was more nervous of living up to the success of the first one,” Taitt said after the show. “But whenever you do things the second time, there’s always a new spin to it. And there’s always different challenges, ups and downs, and the all arounds. I never dreamed of having one, but this was just the icing on the cake.”
The star-studded honorees included the likes of New York Giants linebacker and defensive captain Jonathan Casillas, entertainer Demetria McKinney of House of Payne fame. Plus, singer and soon-to-be author Latavia Roberson, who is a founded member of the all-female super-group Destiny’s Child, and beauty industry icon Miko Branch of the multi-million-dollar company Miss Jessie’s Hair Products.
Each celebrity recounted personal stories on their road to success, with their fair share of trials and tribulations encountered along the way, which, they said, helped shape them into the individuals they are today.
Undrafted out of the University of Wisconsin, Casillas, a bigtime community crusader, battled fiercely for significant gridiron time with the New Orleans Saints. Now, going into his ninth NFL season, the New Jersey native said he uses his fame as a vehicle to inspire and give back to the public, especially children.
“To do things like this, it’s definitely an honor to be asked to be a part of this,” two-time Super Bowl Champ Casillas said of sharing his story at the Dream, Reach, Inspire show. “I’m going to continue to make myself a positive role model and cement my legacy here in New York.”
Furthermore, Taitt noted that the message of hope and inspiration was at the forefront of the Dream, Reach, Inspire Show.
“Peoples’ lives were change, they were transformed, and that’s what I wanted to do this evening,” Taitt said.
Proceeds from Dream, Reach, Inspire will go to Unity in the Community’s Do Right, Do Good Scholarship Foundation, which provides students with financial funds to attend college.