The Coastal Star

Coastal Star: Spirit of Giving’s new president driven by desire to have impact on community

Jackie  Reeves and the Spirit of Giving are involved in the Boca Raton Bowl at FAU.

The organization helps distribute thousands of free game tickets to youths.

Tim Stepien/The Coastal Star

By Rich Pollack

    It’s difficult to imagine Jackie Reeves’ squeezing one more thing into a schedule overflowing with volunteer work for several local nonprofit organizations.
    Reeves, managing director of Bell Rock Capital, a company that designs and implements retirement plans for companies, is on so many boards and committees that it’s hard to understand how she could fit in one more.
    She is a member of the board of trustees for YMCA of South Palm Beach County. She is on the board of the Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce as well as on the board of Leadership Palm Beach County.
    At the same time, Reeves, 50, is running a successful business and raising two teenage daughters with her husband of almost 25 years, Jason.
    Still, she didn’t say no when asked recently to take on the role of president for the Spirit of Giving, a collaborative network of about 60 nonprofit organizations that share resources and ideas. It also organizes three huge events and several smaller ones. Her term, which started in January, doesn’t end until June 2018.
    Ask Reeves, of Boca Raton, how she does it all and she will explain her well-thought-out philosophy of time management. Ask her why she does it, she’ll give you a very simple answer.
    “I do it because I like to help,” she says. “I have a big heart and I want to help move the missions of organizations I work with forward and leave them better off than when I entered.”
    Her desire to help others less fortunate led to her involvement in the Spirit of Giving. An active member and later a president of the Junior League of Boca Raton — which was initially involved in the formation of the organization — Reeves began helping at the group’s holiday gift drive, bringing her two daughters along with her.
    They sorted and packed toys that would be distributed to children served by Spirit of Giving member organizations.
    Reeves volunteered at the organization’s Back to School Bash, which assigns a “personal shopper” who helps kids fill backpacks with school supplies and new shoes and other important items.
    In January of last year, one of the organization’s founders, Ann Rutherford, asked Reeves to join the board. Then in January this year, she was asked to grab the reins and take the leadership position.
  “I said yes because I think I can help make a difference,” Reeves said.
    Reeves isn’t driven by ego, but rather by a genuine desire to have a positive impact on her community.
    “I don’t really need to be front and center,” she said.
    Those who know Reeves well say her passion for assisting others and her wealth of experience make her valuable to nonprofit organizations.
     “A lot of people don’t know how dedicated she is to the community,” says Sue Diener, executive director of Spirit of Giving. “She’s quiet about it. That’s the kind of person she is.”
    As hard as it to believe when you look at all she does — including dancing in and winning the fundraising Boca Ballroom Battle in 2011 — Reeves does take a pass on some requests for her time.
    Her advice to others who want to give back is to think seriously about what they’re going to do and make sure not to overcommit.
    “First, dive into your passion and stay true to that,” she says. “Then be mindful of what you can deliver and what you can’t.”
    One of the activities Reeves and the Spirit of Giving are involved in is the Boca Raton Bowl, an annual college football game heading into its fourth year at Florida Atlantic University. The organization helps distribute thousands of free tickets to youths, who get the royal treatment while watching the game.
    “This is an over-the-moon experience for them,” says Reeves. “It is just so heartwarming.”

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