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BGCL Alumnus Hosts Socratic, Inc. Scholarship Fundraiser on December 1

November 21, 2017

When he was growing up in the Hancock Housing Projects, Socrates De La Cruz says the Boys & Girls Club of Lawrence was a second home where he learned the importance of education, discipline and leadership through sports, and innumerable other life lessons.

He credits the club with his many honors, including the 1991 Boys & Girls Club National Youth of the Year presented by President George H.W. Bush, Oprah Winfrey's Angel Award, and being featured in Denzel Washington's New York Times best-selling book, "A Hand to Guide Me." Now a resident of Methuen, De La Cruz is founder and principal of DLC Law Group, P.C. in Lawrence.

"The Boys & Girls Club of Lawrence helped me feel sheltered, wanted, and protected, like I was part of a bigger family that was genuinely looking out for me," said De La Cruz, whose single mother worked up to three jobs to provide for her two sons. "I met my closest friends there. I was raised there. It changed my life."

As part of his continuous efforts to give back, De La Cruz is hosting a second annual fundraiser benefiting the Stephen Kelley and Maureen Kelley Scholarship Awards on Friday, Dec. 1, 6:30 to 9:30 p.m., at Salvatore's Function Hall located at 354 Merrimack St. in Lawrence. The Socratic, Inc. Make a Difference Night will feature refreshments and live and silent auction items presided over by professional auctioneer Paul Maglio.

The Stephen Kelley Scholarship Award is named for the club's associate director who has worked there for 51 years, while the Maureen Kelley Scholarship Award recognizes the retired teacher and club volunteer coordinator who now volunteers by reading with children in the education center. The awards, typically $1,000 to $1,500 each, help graduating high school seniors with the cost of pursuing higher education.

"Steve and Maureen Kelley have dedicated countless days, nights, months, and years to leaving their fingerprints of encouragement, hope, and love on thousands of kids in need," said De La Cruz, a graduate of Kimball Union Academy, College of the Holy Cross, and Suffolk University Law School. "I'm just doing my part so that someone growing up the way I did no longer sees a college degree as out of reach."

Tickets, which cost $25, are available at https://www.socraticinc.com and at the door.

 

Did You Know?

The Boys & Girls Club of Lawrence provides 350 meals nightly to children in need.