My first memory of charitable involvement refers back to pre-school, toddling after my Mother as she solicited donations for the League of Women Voters (& other worthy causes). I would follow her soliloquy with "…and for the poor children in Mexico"! No one ever understood how I came to that reference. As for my Father -he would grumble about continuously being solicited, then would admit to giving " a little to all".
During High School, I inevitably was championing a socio/political issue, and was nicknamed "Save-The-World-Lynne". However I truly honed my not-for-profit organizational skills in the 1970s & '80s in Palm Beach - where, as an Artist/Photographer, I had been invited to be the first woman to use computer technology to enhance photography. I worked with my dear friend/mentor David Miller on Red Cross Auctions and Designer Showhouses, and the "Master" Charles Morrison at the Adam Walsh Society (becoming the Society for Missing & Abused Children).
Back home in Manhattan I continued my work with such organizations as Housing Works, PBS/Channel Thirteen, the Rainforest Alliance, then developing" Have A Heart"(with Mathew Broderick) benefiting underserved children.
Having lost many friends to the devastation of AIDS, I felt called upon to organize "Grand Tour Design" a Benefit House Tour with Cocktails and Dinners, in the Hamptons, Palm Beach and Manhattan. This five-year project involving thousands of people raised both consciousness and funds for AIDS research & care, through Organizations such as Gods Love We Deliver. By the second year, we added the issue of the environment with the "Nature Conservancy" as a beneficiary.
In the '90s. my growing concern for the "green" led me to organize ECO-DESIGN. Under the aegis of Felissimo, the first large uptown environmentally-friendly boutique (created by the founders of the Kyoto Conference on The Environment), I organized Green Workshops, curated a national exhibition of Sustainable Architectural & Design, and with the very Reverend James Paul Morton of The Cathedral of Saint John The Divine developed an Eco-Dinner in which such notable Environmentalists as my advisor, Bill McDonough & design luminaries Clogdagh & James Wines, received special Eco Awards designed by the "green" Brazilian Artist, Vilma Noel.
In addition, my work with the NYC Parks Department - earning Moi the official Parks
Name of "Roaring Lion", and my recent advocacy and in-house photography for the Hudson River Park, continued my commitment to the environment and my beloved City.
"A Touch of Beauty: New Orleans: Life-Enhancement" was not only inspired by the Dr Phil special, and the rebuilding NOLA by "Saint" Oprah, "Habitat For The Humanity and countless others, but by my associates. Rey Gonzalez left his touted NYC business to return to his NOLA home and rebuild, and Gretchen Bank,a descendant of Sieur de Bienville founder of New Orleans, first hand reports of the utter devastation and tragic loss, encountered in volunteering, juxtaposed against media reports of consumate bureaucratic failure, made me realize that writing checks, for me, is not enough.