Creative Spirit Road To Equity Gala Recap

Written By: Menachem Rephun, Communications Manager and Self Advocate

Check out our charity buzz auction for exciting experiences and items!

Following our Road To Equity Gala on April 10th, we’re hosting a special CharityBuzz auction to advance fair-wage employment and workplace inclusion for our candidates and the entire neurodiverse community. The auction will feature a wide range of exciting events and opportunities available for bidding. Feel free to participate by clicking here:


On April 10, Creative Spirit hosted our annual #RoadtoEquity gala at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) to advance our goal of ensuring full workplace inclusion, accessibility, and fair-wage employment for the neurodiverse community. The gala also spotlighted #HireDifferent, our vital, ongoing mission to place at least 1 million candidates in fair-wage roles by the decade’s end. Just as importantly, we honored and commemorated the life, work, and legacy of our dear friend Karen Eisenbach, who tragically passed away in May 2023. Karen was a close friend, advocate, and supporter of Creative Spirit and inclusion for the neurodiverse community. Through her work as CMO of Voya Financial, she worked daily to make that inclusion a reality. We honored Karen’s memory through the Karen Eisenbach Memorial Scholarship Fund, which benefits outstanding Creative Spirit candidates.

Ringing The Closing Bell At The New York Stock Exchange

The centerpiece of the gala was the ringing of the NYSE’s closing bell by Creative Spirit supporters, leaders, and staff to raise awareness of the need for economic security, belonging, and stability for people who are neurodivergent. We also held a silent auction to expand our coaching, job placement, and mentorship services. Powerful speeches were delivered by Laurel Rossi, co-founder and CEO of Creative Spirit; Joanna McElnea, Creative Spirit’s Community Manager; former Creative Spirit candidate Chris Smith; Dan Yee, husband of Karen Eisenbach, and businessman and motivational speaker Chris Gardner, whose inspirational life story was portrayed by Will Smith in the film The Pursuit of Happyness. Thanks to the generous donations, attendance, and support of our partners, friends, and allies of the neurodiverse community, the gala was a huge success. We greatly look forward to next year’s gala and all of the progress we’ll make leading up to it.

Employers learn more about our services here:

Candidates register here:

A Special Thank you to all our amazing sponsors;

And our incredible board;

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