Grammy Award Winner Patti Austin Helps Those Who Need A Helping Hand
On “Thank Your Mentor” day, Grammy award winner Patti Austin helped to illuminate the meaning of “helping those who need a helping hand”. At a gala event hosted at the Mitchell Gold showroom in Boston, Massachusetts, Ms. Austin, welcomed and congratulated the winners of the prestigious MIDDIES award. The Mentors in Design (MIDDIES) award was created by Cumar, Inc. to recognize industry peers who generously give of their time to mentor young designers.
Among the speakers was Santana Roberts an aspiring artist and mentee of Patti Austin. Santana is the daughter of two high school teachers in Providence, Rhode Island, who, like many middle class families, struggle every day just to make ends meet. Even during these trying times, they’ve continued to support their daughter who at a very early age dreamt of becoming a singer.
At the age of 12, Santana sent a letter to Patti Austin’s manager requesting a copy of a beloved arrangement that Patti had performed, called “A Tisket A Tasket.” Although hundreds of requests like these are received every day, this one caught Ms. Austin’s attention.
“Santana showed a great love for classic songs and great music at such a young age,” said Patti. “It reminded me of myself as a teenager.”
Thus was born a bond that has transformed a fan – celebrity relationship into an enduring mentor – mentee friendship. Mentoring has been a lifelong passion of Patti’s. With good friend and co-founder, Dawn Carroll, she helped launched the Over My Shoulder Foundation. Their charter is to foster mentoring, especially as it relates to music and then leverages the media to further the message … the art of “Mentorology.”
Patti’s passion for mentoring youth grows stronger every day as she continues her tireless mission to help those who need a helping hand. At a recent performance to celebrate Audio Technica’s 50th anniversary, Ms. Austin requested that a $10,000 charitable donation be granted as a scholarship to Santana Roberts, helping her to achieve her dream to attend the prestigious Berklee College of Music.
“I’m beginning to live my anticipated dream and I look back on my young life and know that without the mentorship of Patti Austin my fire could have gone out,” remarked Santana Roberts. “Alongside my mom, I want to thank Ms. Austin for being my source of inspiration and continuing to believe in me.”
There is no greater reward then knowing that, in some small way, you’ve helped a fellow human. As we close out National Mentoring Month, join Patti Austin and the Over My Shoulder Foundation to help someone who needs a helping hand.