What an amazing and enriching experience to be able to spend a Saturday evening at the fourth annual Tatiana Ball, honoring the history of Russia. The country is known for having one of the richest and most influential cultures around the world and it was evident in the intricate details of this beautiful evening. Dr. Clayton Lawrence, President and CEO of Leap Foundation DC, enjoyed the uber-private event, along with several hundred guests.
Everyone from famous artists and cultural professionals, to businesspeople and anyone who is passionate about culture and history came together for the annual fete that remembers Saint Tatiana, a Christian martyr. January 25 has become one of the favorite holidays for Russian youth, as it is considered the end of the winter exam session, followed by a two-week winter break. And it is only fitting to celebrate, as this was the day that the first Russian University was established by Empress Elizabeth of Russia, daughter of Peter the Great.
Marked by a youth ball at the Russian Embassy, Washington, D.C., the Tatiana Ball continues in memory of the late Princess Selene Obolensky who birthed the idea to organize an event that would raise funds for the St. John Benevolent Fund for Russian Children in Need. Princess Obolensky, a member of the Orthodox youth, played was an integral part in organizing the charity ball.
The Benevolent Fund is inspired by the holy hierarch St. John of Shanghai of San Francisco, who came to Washington, D.C., to ask Congress to come to the relief of thousands of refugees stranded on an island in the Philippines while fleeing the horrors of communist regimes of the USSR and the Red China. St. John’s life was dedicated to selfless giving through endless compassion, kindness and love. Since its establishment in 1949, the fund supported numerous charitable initiatives and assisted thousands of hardship-torn individuals and families across the world, including refugees, those escaping persecution for their faith, victims of natural disasters, children in need, the ill and the homeless.
We know all too well the hardships that families are facing both here and around the world,said Dr. Clayton Lawrence. That’s why we, at LEAP Foundation DC, are committed and dedicated to ensuring that our disadvantaged youth and their families are given every opportunity to succeed. We were honored to be a part of tonight’s beautiful occasion, enjoying and engaging in the beautiful history and culture of our Russian friends and supporting a charitable cause that reaches far and wide.
Dr. Charles Vincent, renown Russian scholar and highly-esteemed philanthropist, hosted the evening. His commitment to the community and culture of the District of Columbia is apparent through his Social Sightings section of the Washington Informer Newspaper. He has carried on this legacy after the passing of his wife, the beloved Mickey Thompson Vincent. Both have been advocates of a number of significant causes in the Washington, D.C., community and the media and publishing company has been a positive platform to highlight many of the significant achievements of the African American population in the District of Columbia.