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YMCA of Reading & Berks Celebrates 20th Annual Breakfast of Champions

by YMCA of Reading & Berks County

May 03, 2019

Reading – On Tuesday, April 30th the YMCA of Reading & Berks County hosted the 20th Annual Breakfast of Champions at the DoubleTree by Hilton, Reading. Over 400 were in attendance to honor John Gallen Jr., Owner & President of Ethosource, as the 2019 YMCA Champion for Youth and Emma Hopler, Youth Honoree. Thank you to our Champion Sponsor, M&T Bank, for your continued support of this event and the work that we do. We are pleased to announce that we have set a record and exceeded our goal of $150,000 for this annual event.

John Gallen is the owner of Ethosource, LLC a Reading Based office furniture manufacturer and dealer.  Since its inception in 2001 Gallen has grown the firm from a laptop computer and a unique concept into a thriving business with over 85 employees, and a customer base that spans the nation. Part of the Ethosource mission is to “Give where we live” and the company is passionate about giving to local non-profits that provide important community services. Ethosource provides office furniture for several local non-profits including The YMCA of Reading & Berks County, Safe Berks, Opportunity House, The Children’s Alliance, The Greater Berks Food Bank, and The Olivet Boys and Girls Club. Gallen attended Villanova University and is a graduate of Georgetown University with a Bachelor of Science degree in languages and linguistics. He is an avid hiker, mountain climber and world traveler. In the spring of 2018 Gallen walked The Way of St James starting in France and walking across Northern Spain 650 miles to The Atlantic Ocean. In 2019 he trekked for 5 weeks in India, Bhutan and Nepal to Mt. Everest Base Camp fulfilling a lifelong dream.

Emma Hopler is a senior at Wyomissing Junior/Senior High School. She has spent her high-school career dedicated to her interests in politics and international affairs. Emma was accepted to the All American Model United Nations program through a competitive academic review in her sophomore year. She was selected to apply to the program because she placed 6th in a field of 300 at a National event held at Georgetown University in February 2017. She is the first person chosen from Wyomissing and only the second person to be selected in the     history of the program from the State of Pennsylvania. With her All-American team, she has competed at and won conferences in Poland, Hungary, China and Spain. She plans to use the lessons she has learned traveling abroad and studying international politics to major in International Relations and Government at George Washington University this coming fall.

For over 160 years, our Y has been the heart of our community, helping to meet the ever changing needs of the people we serve. Every day, the Y’s six branches serve as gathering places for children, families, seniors, and the community as a whole. The Y never turns anyone away because they cannot afford to pay. Donations to the Breakfast of Champions help many in the community with child care services, Y memberships, after-school programs, youth sports, senior exercising and socializing and transitional living programs for men, women and children.

The program ended with a special presentation from State Representative Mark Rozzi whom proudly serves on the YMCA of Reading & Berks County Corporate Board of Directors. Representative Rozzi presented Kim Johnson, YMCA President & CEO, with a check for $350,000 earmarked to replace all seven roofs that cover the corporate office building, gymnasium, swimming pool, childcare center and transitional living housing programs. A very special thank you goes out to Representative Rozzi and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for helping to ensure that we are able to make these necessary improvements to continue the very important work that we do.

     The mission of the YMCA of Reading & Berks County is to put Judeo-Christian principles into practice     
     through programs that build healthy spirit, mind, and body for all. For over 160 years we have been   
     the heart of the community we serve. The Y is a cause-driven organization that is for youth
     development, for healthy living and for social responsibility. That’s because a strong community can
     only be achieved when we invest in our kids, our health and our neighbors. The Y so much more.

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