NORMAN — It’s all in the spirit of peace, love and goodwill. At least for Goodwill Industries of Central Oklahoma CEO Chris Daniels, putting on a locally star-studded music bill isn’t just for a night of good tunes.
Last year marked the first ever benefit concert, titled “Peace, Love and Goodwill,” for an Abilities Scholarship after 18 years of golf tournament fundraisers no longer seemed up to par.
A music concert seemed like something more people could enjoy than a round of golf, and after Daniels saw the positive reception of last year’s show, he decided to bring in even more bands for people to enjoy.
“I remember just kind of stepping back from that and watching it and looking at how happy the people were and how good it felt to be able to bring them that moment,” Daniels said. “To be able to do that while generating money for the scholarship is pretty special.”
The scholarship is awarded to a graduating high school senior from Oklahoma that submits an essay response to “How my disability does not define me” and meets other qualifications such as a minimum GPA of 3.0, U.S. citizenship and has written documentation from a physician proving a disability. The scholarship can then be applied to a degree or certification at academically accredited institutions in the country.
Daniels said there is a fairly large population of Goodwill employees that have disabilities of their own, making this fundraiser and scholarship close to Goodwill staffs’ hearts.
“We try to feature local talent and then we try to keep the artists we bring in from outside of the state along the same music style,” Daniels said. “We have a staff that really enjoys music and are out there listening and trying to piece together people they think would be a good fit.”