In an effort to bring the industry back together again following what will have been nearly two years of pandemic-related upheaval, the Two Ten Footwear Foundation will honor two industry leaders for their philanthropic work — Cliff Sifford of Shoe Carnival and OrthoLite’s Glenn Barrett — at its annual, in-person gala in December.
The nonprofit announced that its 81st annual gala will take place Dec. 1 at Pier 60 in New York. The gala, which will be named “One Team: All In,” will feature a casino theme and it will be chaired by Skechers.
Two Ten said its T. Kenyon Holly Memorial Award, the highest honor for outstanding humanitarian achievement named for the organization’s past president, will be presented to Cliff Sifford, CEO of Shoe Carnival. Glenn Barrett, founder and CEO of OrthoLite, will receive the A.A. Bloom Memorial Award for his years of service to Two Ten — the award is also named for a founder of Two Ten and recognizes hard work, dedication and unselfish actions of an individual.
“Cliff and Glenn are being recognized for their extraordinary philanthropic achievements that have made a meaningful difference in the world, demonstrating time and again that kindness and caring are at the core of our industry community,” said Shawn Osborne, CEO and president of Two Ten, in a written statement.
Sifford’s Shoe Carnival is involved with eight charities in Evansville, Ind., in addition to several national charities such as Two Ten. Sifford is slated to step down as CEO of Shoe Carnival in late September, but he will retain the role of vice chairman there. The executive was also recently appointed the chairman of the Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America.
“To receive this award, to be in the company of all of the incredible recipients before me, is an honor beyond words,” said Sifford in the statement. “Extending help to the community in whatever ways I can has just always been the right thing to do. I am fortunate to be in a position to encourage others to do the same and hope it sets an enduring and inspiring example.”
Barrett is chair of Two Ten’s Major Gifts and Development Committees, and the nonprofit said that he has “worked tirelessly to fundraise on behalf of the foundation.”
Most recently, Barrett and his wife, Midge, committed $500,000 to Two Ten’s COVID-19 Crisis Relief Fund. The donation helped people in the industry who were laid off or furloughed due to the health crisis.
“I am humbled to receive this honor,” Barrett said in the statement. “The shoe business is small and we all know each other at some level. I feel incredibly fortunate to give back to the industry and the individuals that have given me so much.”
As for the event itself, Skechers SVP of domestic sales, Rick Graham, will work with Two Ten to plan a single-format, cocktails-and-hors d’oeuvres evening for 700 guests. The casino theme will feature gaming tables, Vegas-style decor, cocktail lounges and entertainment. Also, there will be a virtual component with a live feed from the venue, online gaming and other interactive features.
“We’re one industry and one community that comes together for one really important cause, and that’s to take care of each other,” said Graham, who also serves on Two Ten’s board. “It is an honor to work with the Two Ten team, and we look forward to bringing the industry together for the first time since the pandemic.”
For his part, Osborne noted that the emphasis of the evening will be on celebrating donors, versus a focus on fundraising efforts.