Thirteen-year-old Kaitlin Leas described her father’s passion for Make-A-Wish this way: “I think my dad does the work he does with Make-A-Wish because he wants to make sure that kids who are sick have someone else on their side. I think he wants them to know that it’s important to look forward. When I get a grade I don’t agree with, my dad has taught me to stick up for myself. In a way, that is what he is doing at Make-A-Wish – he is sticking up for kids who need something more to get them through.”
Kaitlin introduced her father at the 2019 Power of A Wish Gala, which honored her father and the Leas family, for their outstanding and countless contributions to the chapter over the past five years.
Mr. Leas, a partner and the co-head of the global structured finance business of Apollo Global Management, LLP is also the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Make-A-Wish Metro New York and Western New York. Sharing in this honor is his family, including Audrey Fisher and his children Kaitlin, 13, Jamie, 12, and George, 10. Mr. Leas is an incredible champion for wish kids. His passion for our mission has enabled the life-changing power of a wish to be felt by countless children fighting critical illnesses.
In his remarks, Mr. Leas extolled the room with a fact that hat he found incredible: “I have learned though, is that we actually have something called a wish-granting department. It’s true. How magical is that? It made me think. Imagine if everyone had one. Imagine if your company had one. A wish-granting department. Next time you have a bad day or maybe you miss a deadline, or you bomb your speech, you just mosey on down to the wish-granting department. Imagine how amazing this would be as an adult! Now, can you imagine how fantastic it is for a child?
Wishes have the power to make us all better than we were. They make us want to give whatever we can. We need to make them happen. We need to make sure that every eligible child gets their wish.”
It is only through the generosity of donors like the Leas family that wishes can be granted. According to Kaitlin, Make-A-Wish is a family affair because, “my dad shows us what matters to him because he wants us to grow up with a sense of hopefulness and to make a commitment to making a difference.”
Thank you, Bret and the Leas family for your generosity and commitment!