Sportswriter Dan Shaughnessy Among Authors Being Featured at Jumpstart’s Boston Gala

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Authors and Patrons Gather to Support Early Education

Jumpstart, a national early education organization, will host its annual Scribbles to Novels gala tonight in the newly renovated Grand Ballroom at the Royal Sonesta Boston. Dan Shaughnessy, award-winning sportswriter and columnist for The Boston Globe, and Andre Dubus III, author of the New York Times bestsellers "House of Sand and Fog" and "Dirty Love," will be among the personalities entertaining more than 300 expected guests at the Royal Sonesta Boston, a breathtaking event space with panoramic views of the Boston skyline.

During the evening’s cocktail hour, guests will mingle with authors and fellow Jumpstart supporters, and walk away with signed copies of releases from this year’s host of acclaimed authors. The evening will continue with a gourmet three-course dinner, remarks from Jumpstart’s President and CEO, Naila Bolus; Jumpstart volunteer, Bethany Kirby; and Host Committee chairs, Mark Polebaum, Diane Buhl, and Joseph and Deborah Robbins, a live auction led by Kathy Kingston of Kingston Auction Company, and an exclusive, on-stage interview with the evening’s panel of authors moderated by Andre Dubus III.

In addition to Dan Shaughnessy, this year’s Scribbles to Novels author lineup includes National Book Award winner and author of "Three Junes" and "And the Dark Sacred Night," Julia Glass; author of over 100 children’s books including the New York Times bestselling "Guardians of Ga’Hoole" series, Kathryn Lasky; and Anita Shreve, author of over seventeen novels, several of which have been turned into films including "The Pilot’s Wife," "The Weight of Water," and "Resistance."

This year, Jumpstart’s Scribbles to Novels will honor Robert Waldron, Chief Executive Officer of Curriculum Associates, for his fourteen years of dedicated service on behalf of Jumpstart, first as Jumpstart’s second CEO and now as a member of Jumpstart’s National Board of Directors.

“Rob never misses an opportunity to excite, motivate, and introduce new people to our work. This year alone, Jumpstart recruited and trained more than 800 volunteers to work with over 2,100 preschool children in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, helping them develop the skills needed to succeed in school. This growth is driven by the nurturing relationships formed between the children and volunteers who implement Jumpstart’s program, and would not be possible without the support of others like Rob,” said Mark Reilly, Regional Vice President of Jumpstart. “We are grateful to Rob, our featured authors, sponsors, and Host Committee for dedicating their time and effort towards Jumpstart’s vision - ensuring that every child in America enters kindergarten prepared to succeed.”

In 2015, the event raised over $450,000 to support Jumpstart’s work in Massachusetts and Rhode Island.


Jumpstart provides language, literacy, and social-emotional programming for preschool children from under-resourced communities and promotes quality early learning for all. Since 1993, Jumpstart has trained 40,000 college students and community volunteers to transform the lives of 87,000 preschool children nationwide. Learn more at

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Carolyn Swanhall
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