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Funds Raised at ECCAC’s Signature Gala and Golf Weekend Surpasses all Previous Records

The community, sponsors and supporters of the Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Center (ECCAC) rallied at this year’s Gala in the Garden and Golf Weekend to raise an impressive $685,000. This substantial amount broke all previous records at ECCAC’s annual signature event that has been ongoing for 24 years.

Julie Porterfield, ECCAC CEO commented, “We are so thankful for the incredible generosity of our sponsors and guests. The weekend benefited children in Okaloosa and Walton Counties to help ECCAC provide services at no cost to identify, treat and support children and their families in abusive situations.” 

This year’s Gala also honored Cindy Cole as the 4th annual recipient of the prestigious Zeke Bratkowski Advocate Award. Cole, broker/owner of Cindy Cole Fine Homes, Corcoran Reverie. Cole serves on the Board of Directors of ECCAC and has provided on-going involvement and support for a number of years. Bratkowski was an NFL professional football player, and an assistant coach in the NFL for over two decades. He passed away in 2019, and was a passionate supporter of ECCAC, founding the first gala and golf event in 1999. 

The sold-out Gala in the Garden was held at the Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa and featured a very successful live auction with a bevy of unique items auctioned such as trips to Europe, wineries in California, dinners and more. Guests enjoyed dinner, an impactful talk by Julie Porterfield, and live entertainment by popular local musicians, The Will Thompson Band

The Golf Tournament was held at Kelly Plantation Golf Club two days after the Gala in the Garden, with over 100 golfers taking to the greens on the golf course. 

ECCAC wishes to thank their generous top level supporters – Weekend Title Sponsors: George and Janice Hendricks; Golf Tournament Sponsors: Coastal Accounting and Merrill Lynch/Krueger, Fosdyck & Associates. 

For further information about the Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Center, or to make a donation, visit or call 850-833-9237. If abuse is suspected, call the anonymous Florida Abuse Hotline at 1-800-96-ABUSE. 

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