TINTON FALLS, NJ –The Arc of Monmouth’s Winter Glow gala, honoring entrepreneur and parent-advocate for autism awareness Rob Ilvento, raised $172,000 to benefit the 1,600 individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) served by The Arc in Monmouth County.
Nearly 200 guests attended the annual event, held Dec. 1 at Eagle Oaks Golf and Country Club, Farmingdale, which featured celebrity auctioneer Nick Dawes from PBS’s Antique Roadshow, pinball, casino games, cocktails, dinner, a rocking 10-piece band, and plenty of surprises in keeping with the “Get Your Glow On” theme.
Winter Glow chair and event host Holly Flego, Colts Neck, praised Ilvento for his longtime support of the autistic and I/DD community, as both a business leader and dedicated father. A proclamation from Freeholder Serena DiMaso named December 1, 2017 as “Rob Ilvento Day” in Monmouth County in honor of Ilvento’s dedication and commitment to autism causes.
"Tolerance, acceptance, and support are sometimes in short supply,” said Ilvento in a humorous and heartwarming speech recounting his experiences as the father of an autistic child. “Next time you see a situation involving a special needs child, don't look away. Find a way to offer help or a few kind words. It won't go unappreciated."
Ilvento founded the Silverball Museum & Arcade in 2009 in response to his daughter’s love of pinball. “Autistic children have a difficult time connecting,” said Ilvento. “But Morgan connected to pinball like nothing else.” The venue welcomes patrons with special needs and hosts autism awareness and fundraising events throughout the year. A 2017 USA Today Readers Poll recently named the Silverball Museum “Best Attraction in New Jersey.”
Major sponsors of The Arc of Monmouth’s Winter Glow gala included The Anabel Foundation; Shore Point Distributors; Hackensack Meridian Health; Stillwell-Hansen Inc.; J&D Transportation; New Jersey Natural Gas; TD Bank; Ray Catena Family of Dealerships; and OceanFirst Foundation.
Additional information on the event, including a photo gallery, PDF of the 2017 Winter Glow ad journal, and a video of honoree Rob Ilvento’s acceptance speech is available online at www.arcofmonmouth.org/winterglow.
The Arc of Monmouth is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, annually serving more than 1,600 through education, vocational training, residential services, health care, supported employment, recreation, individual and family supports, self-directed services and advocacy.