Celebrations at Frontier Field
The 2020 class year brought excitement at every turn this year. After twists, turns, and COVID delays the program ran 11 months long. The board and staff knew the class needed an evening to remember as the year came to close. In August we prepared to celebrate graduation at Frontier Field, home of the Rochester Red Wings. Graduates and their guests were set to have a wonderful dinner as they celebrated graduation together. The event went perfectly, except for the humorous twists that 2020 brought us evening.
The Leadership Rochester 2020 class had kicked off a wonderful year together last September when they opened the year for their retreat downtown. The class has been close and connected most of the year. Like everything else, plans shifted for this year’s Leadership Rochester class. The 2020 cohort’s final few months of instruction moved to Zoom in March. It made for a unique experience, but a fulfilling one.
Fast-forward to graduation. Typically held in June, the date shifted along with the rest of the program to August 3. Frontier Field was the perfect venue for a beautifully arranged, socially distanced graduation celebration. The evening’s weather was pleasant as the graduates and their families gathered together, but, like COVID-19, Mother Nature threw us a curveball.
Less than an hour in, the skies opened up and the rain came down. And boy, did it rain. And rain, and rain. But, like they’ve done time and time again this year, the group adapted, persevered, and made the most of a difficult situation. Dinner shifted from tables along the Walk of Fame to the bleachers where the class enjoyed time with their families while being recognized for their accomplishments throughout the year.
The cohort was treated to a typical night out at Frontier Field, sans the baseball. Rocky Perrotta, the “Voice of Rochester”, was Master of Ceremonies, while Spikes embraced the rain and entertained the crowd. And the sweet sounds of Fred Costello’s organ permeated the stadium.
Dan Mason, General Manager of Frontier Field, managed the evening’s festivities. The class also heard from LR board president, Cindee Gray, vice chair Lauren Gallina, class-elected speaker, Ivanna Colon, and Rochester Red Wings president and CEO, Naomi Silver.
Little about the 2020 year was typical for this class, but there are valuable life lessons . Change is constant. A good leader embraces that change and the challenges that come with it. A good leader knows that adaptability is both a skill set and a strength that must be continuously nurtured.
To the class of 2020, may you continue to grow, may you continue to learn and may you continue to change the world for the better. Rochester is in good hands with all of you leading the way.
Click to Scroll through our event photos below!
(Amazing photos by Kelly Mullaney, Working Art Media, LR2015 Alumna)