Save the date for the
2020 Annual Luncheon!

Thursday, February 27th, 2020

Featuring Jessica Lahey, author of The Gift of Failure:
How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Their Children Can Succeed

Jessica Lahey | Educator * Speaker * Best-selling Author

Is failure a lost cause? Educator and New York Times best-selling author Jessica Lahey believes that it can be a gift. Experiencing failure is an integral part of becoming successful, resilient and self-reliant adults. Her book, The Gift of Failure: How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Their Children Can Succeed, has become essential reading for parents, educators and coaches and declared a “must-read” by magazines as varied as Working Mother, Fortune and Education Week. Jessica is internationally recognized as an expert and thought leader on how parenting styles affect children’s motivation, learning and resilience. She is a writer for The Atlantic and The Washington Post, commentator for Vermont Public Radio and author of the popular New York Times “The Parent Teacher Conference” column that ran for three years. Jessica is also a member of the Amazon Studios Thought Leader Board and wrote the educational curriculum for Amazon Kids’ The Stinky and Dirty Show, She earned a B.A. in Comparative Literature from the University of Massachusetts and a J.D. with a concentration in juvenile and education law from the University of North Carolina School of Law.

Purchase Tables and Tickets

Click below to hear personal stories and view pictures from the 2019 Annual Luncheon event. Thank you to all who attended.

Luncheon Photos

About the Luncheon

The Joy School Annual Luncheon is a highly anticipated event in the Houston community. The event features distinguished guest speakers who address current topics of interest to both educational professionals and the Houston community at large. Following the Luncheon, the speaker conducts an interactive seminar.

Proceeds from the Luncheon are primarily allocated to The Student Financial Aid Fund, which supports children who would otherwise not have the opportunity to attend The Joy School. Additionally, funds generated from the Luncheon are combined with Annual Fund gifts to help meet the operating needs of the School.

About the Educator Seminar

We believe helping other educators in the community work effectively with children with learning differences is crucial. The Joy School holds an educator seminar in conjunction with The Annual Luncheon, in which the Luncheon guest speaker spends an evening addressing professional educators such as teachers, school administrators, diagnosticians and speech pathologists.

This seminar is generously underwritten and offered to all education professionals in the Houston area at no cost as part of our ongoing community outreach program. Teachers also earn TEA credits by attending the seminar.

2019 Underwriters

Special thanks to our underwriters for their generous support!


Marie & Bill Wise


Limor & Stuart Smith


Genna & Jon Evans

PF Houston ~ Guest Speaker Sponsor


Authentic Agility Games, LLC ~ Video Sponsor

C N and Maria Papadopoulos Charitable Foundation

Lucy & Fowler Carter

Emily & Holcombe Crosswell

Suzanne L. Kupiec & James C. Dyer IV ~ Educator Seminar Sponsor

Friends of The Joy School

Faith & Joe Gutierrez

Christy & Webb Jennings ~ Invitation Sponsor

Patti Melcher

John S. Moody

Mary Elizabeth Wise Sand

Ann & Donald Short

Michelle & Alan Smith

Vinson & Elkins LLP / Lisa & David Stone

Tiffany & Craig Utterson

Jeanie Kilroy Wilson


Kyle Kirksey/Linda King Allison ~ Luncheon Seminar Sponsor

Annunciation Orthodox School

Val & Martial Burguieres

Lisa & Mark Livingston

Laura & Jimmy Shuford

Leslie Newcomer / Phyllis Selber / Sandy Sturm

Vivian Wise

Kathleen & Pat Wood


Annunciation Orthodox School Moms

Sheryl & Robert Burleson ~ Joy School Student Greeter Table Sponsor

Veronica & Mike Curran

Friends of Genna & Tiffany

Eleanor & Dan Gilbane

Trish & Andrew Hayes ~ Decoration Sponsor

Carrie & Jacques Hodges

Jessica Meyer / Heather Hoeffner & Friends

Kate Lilly’s Kindergarten Parents

Janell Reniers / Shelly Katz

Alice & Keith Mosing

Origin Bank

Joy Posoli

Isla Reckling ~ Alumni Table Sponsor

Abby & Charlie Shears

Linda & Bob Walker / Friends of Lisa Stone

Stephanie & Scott Sanders / Courtney & Kyle Zenner