2024 Fall Benefit Dinner

With great pride, A Better Chance is honored to announce the 2024 Fall Benefit Dinner to be held at Gotham Hall in New York City on October 21, 2024, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. EST!

We invite you to join us for an iconic evening as we celebrate over 60 years of providing transformational educational opportunities to students of color! The Benefit Dinner will bring together members of the A Better Chance Community for an event in support of making education more equitable and inclusive.

With the opportunity to hear from our scholars and this year's honorees, this is an event you don't want to miss. Please join us!


Gotham Hall
1356 Broadway, New York, NY 10018


October 21, 2024
6 p.m. to 9 p.m.


Cocktail/Business Formal

Dream Builder Award Award Honoree

Hakim Thompson Headshot

Hakim Thompson Co-Head of Structured Lending & Financing (SLF) Risk


With over 15 years of experience in the structured finance markets, Hakim is a Global Co-Head of Structured Lending & Financing (SLF) Risk at Barclays, a credit risk focused global team that covers a wide range of client activities and financing solutions across Securitized Products, Structured Credit, and Equities. Hakim co-leads a 40-person global team, who review, analyze, and ultimately sanction financing transactions in both Global Markets and Banking, across the Corporate Investment Bank (CIB). Hakim has a proven track record of managing risk teams, facilitating derivative and structured product trades across FICC & Equities, re-structuring debt facilities, and delivering financing, head of finance, and institutional sales roles at Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, and various fintech startups. Hakim is also passionate about promoting and protecting affordable homeownership and college preparation for low-income communities, serving on the board of directors for the Center of New York City Neighborhoods (CNYCN) and Summer Search non-profit organizations. Hakim holds an MBA from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T) and an AB in Politics from Princeton University. Though born & raised in Washington, D.C., Hakim, his wife Lauren, and three daughters (Thea, Georgia, and Nora) reside in Manhattan.


For other methods of payment, including check or wire, please contact development@abetterchance.org

What's Included in the Sponsorship? Click Here!

Scholar Award Recipients

Jeamilett Martinez Judith Berry Award

Jeamilett Martinez Headshot (1)

St. Mark's School (MA)

The Judith Berry Griffin Award, named for Judith Berry Griffin, President of A Better Chance from 1982–2003, carries with it a monetary award of $5,000 and is awarded to a senior who has shown exceptional and steadfast determination to achieve. The recipient demonstrates success through perseverance toward personal objectives, in spite of obstacles that might have impeded his or her progress.

Sofia Gauna-Torres Nancy J. Lucas Award

Sophia Gauna Torres Headshot (1)

Lick-Wilmerding High School

The Nancy J. Lucas Memorial Award was established in loving memory of our Senior Program Coordinator who served the New York Metro Area from 1985 to 2002. Ms. Lucas’s family, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority sisters, A Better Chance colleagues, and countless Alumni who benefited from her services have endowed this award. The award, and the $3,500 that accompanies it, is given to a Scholar who demonstrates leadership in promoting equity and justice at his or her school or offers special encouragement to peers.

Jaiden Jefferson The Sandra E. Timmons Award

Jaiden Jefferson Sandra E Timmons Award 2024

Crossroads School for Arts and Sciences

Sandra E. Timmons Award 
Starting in 2024, the Sandra Timmons Scholarship will be awarded to a senior Scholar who exceeds in the classroom and out, demonstrates success in spite of obstacles, is a leader on campus, and hopes to pursue a degree in business and economics.  Further, recipients have taken advantage of the most challenging courses in their schools’ rigorous curriculum specific to business and economics and have demonstrated their academic prowess in doing so. Specifically, awardees will have taken and scored a four or above in two of the following advanced placement (AP) courses: AP Calculus AB or BC, AP Stats, AP Microeconomics, and AP Macroeconomics. Each Award winner receives a gift of $1,500. 


Visentin Scholar Award Recipients

Arianna Nelson

Arianna Nelson Headshot (1)

The Maderia School

Chloe Hayden

Chloe Hayden Headshot

The Archer Schools for Girls

Academic Achievement Award

Daniel Montano

Daniel Montano

Convent & Stuart Hall - Schools of the Sacred Heart

Ezinne Okonkwo

Ezinne Okonkwo

The Thacher School

Jordan Adeyemi

Jordan Adeyemi

Phillips Exeter Academy

Joshua Paz

Joshua Paz

The Kew-Forest School

Natalia Somma Tang

Natalia Somma Tang

Culver Academies

Highlights from Past Benefit Dinners