Paul Mitchell Schools Donate $106,250 to No Limitsby Paul Mitchell Schools on 5/13/2011
Graduate of Hearing-Impaired Theater Group Featured on Glee
At their biannual owners Summit on May 1, 2011, in Newport Beach, CA, the nationwide network of Paul Mitchell cosmetology schools raised $106,250 for No Limits, the country’s only theater group for deaf and hard-of-hearing children. They raised the money in one day, through a silent auction in which numerous school owners and educators donated a day (or more) of education, and renowned artist Vladimir Prodanovich donated a painting valued at over $7,000.
Appearing at the Summit on behalf of No Limits, deaf comedian and motivational speaker Kathy Buckley showed a clip from the wildly popular TV show Glee, in which deaf singer and No Limits alumnus John Autry II performs a solo of John Lennon’s “Imagine.” In the program, his classmates accompany him through sign language, and the Glee choir joins in for a memorable performance between both schools.
As the clip ended, the real-life John Autry joined Kathy on stage and performed the song again, to the delight and surprise of the assembled Paul Mitchell school owners.
“John is the reason we have No Limits today,” Kathy explained. At the age of seven, John began working with Michelle Christie-Adams, a highly qualified teacher dedicated to bringing speech to deaf and hearing-impaired children. When she discovered how much John loved music and performing, Michelle started the No Limits theater group especially for him.
Since then, the children of No Limits have performed in more than 60 productions in over 10 states, reaching an audience of over 30,000 people. No Limits has been featured in the New York Times, Newsday, Oprah, and other media outlets. Michelle has received numerous awards and honors for her work, including the Top 100 Heroes award from Volvo for Life and the George Washington Medal of Honor from the Freedom Foundation.
Paul Mitchell Schools Dean and Cofounder Winn Claybaugh kept the silent auction results secret until later that night. At the schools’ annual Magic of Memories Dinner, which celebrates their annual “FUNraising” campaign, Winn and co-host called Kathy onstage and presented her with a giant check. As she burst into tears, Kathy’s shock and joy were evident to all. “I never thought I would see the day when I would be speechless,” she later said. “You pulled the rabbit out of the hat and created such incredible memories for all of us at No Limits. To all of those who contributed to the silent auction as well as those who volunteered to sponsor a child for a year through our Take a Stand to Save a Deaf Child’s Life program, Michelle and I thank you. The parents of these children express their gratitude to me, so I pass it on to you. Thank you for loving and supporting our children’s future.”
To see John Autry on Glee and Oprah, visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FC3Im47E-Yo
About Paul Mitchell Schools
Established 30 years ago, the Paul Mitchell network is nearly 100,000 salons strong and in 81 countries worldwide, and every professional hairdresser knows the Paul Mitchell name. Now, with the arrival of Paul Mitchell Schools, we've taken the world of cosmetology education by storm.
At Paul Mitchell Schools, we believe that education is an adventure and the learning experience needs to be fun. Our instructors—we call them “learning leaders”—are trained to draw out the artist in every student and prepare them to compete in the real world. Through our annual “FUNraising” campaign, we’ve raised and donated millions of dollars in support of many charitable causes. We’ve built two homes with Habitat for Humanity, fed thousands of African orphans, and supported the victims of AIDS, breast cancer, homelessness, abuse, and hundreds of other causes. Visit http://www.paulmitchell.edu/ to learn more.
About No Limits
No Limits Theater Group is the only theater group in the nation that produces original plays featuring the inspiring talents of children with a hearing loss who listen and speak. For fifteen years, No Limits has produced over 60 professional plays across the country, touching the lives of hundreds of children and entertaining thousands. Through extensive workshops, No Limits builds each child’s speech and language skills and teaches them the importance of hard work, overcoming obstacles, perseverance and the power of believing in themselves. Learn more at http://www.kidswithnolimits.org/