2024 Spirit of Courage Gala Honoring Steve Sarowitz

Thursday, May 30, 2024
5:00 PM - 12:00 AM
Ateres Ayala
Ateres Ayala
3412 West Touhy
Skokie, IL 60076
United States

Please join our honorees in the fight against hate by choosing a level of support for the Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Combat Hate workshop. Your contribution ensures that students in grade levels 7-12 develop 21st century skills for inquiry and critical thinking to combat digital hate.

Help us empower the next generation to stand up for a world of peaceful, respectful co-existence.
Spirit of Courage Recipient

Steve Sarowitz is Founder and Chairman of Paylocity (Nasdaq: PCTY), a leading U.S. provider of payroll and HR solutions. In addition, Steve is a partner at Wayfarer Studios and Wayfarer Theaters. He is also an international philanthropist who promotes unity through universal education and advocates for the elimination of racism, sexism, nationalism and religious prejudice.
SWC National Leadership Recipient
Daryl Davis is an American R&B musician and activist. As an African American known for his efforts to fight racism, he has engaged with members of the Ku Klux Klan (KKK), convincing a number of Klansmen to leave and denounce this hate group. Known for his energetic style of Boogie Woogie piano, Davis has played with such musicians as Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis, B. B. King, and Bruce Hornsby.
Master of Ceremonies
Jamey Heath, a prolific songwriter, musician, and producer known for his Grammy-winning work on Gladys Knight’s 'At Last' album, brings his passion for inclusivity and social change to our event as the MC for the evening. Jamey is also a co-host of The Man Enough Podcast, a Webby-nominated show exploring modern masculinity and its impact on society. Alongside hosts Justin Baldoni and Liz Plank, Jamey fosters a safe environment for diverse perspectives to discuss masculinity's influence on relationships, body image, privilege, and more. This top-ranked podcast, beloved by individuals of all genders, is currently in its second season and ranks in the top 1% of most followed and shared podcasts on Spotify.
Medals of Valor
DeMar DeRozan is a Compton, California native and played college basketball at the University of Southern California. The Toronto Raptors selected him with the ninth overall pick in the 2009 NBA Draft. DeRozan is currently the leading scorer for the Chicago Bulls and recently jumped to 32nd place on the NBA’s all-time scoring list. This milestone is a testament to DeRozan's consistency and longevity in the league, as he has now scored over 23,180 points throughout his career. DeRozan is a six-time NBA All-Star and three-time All-NBA team member. He won gold medals with the United States men’s national basketball team in the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. DeRozan’s impact expands beyond the basketball court with his unwavering commitment to philanthropy and causes close to his heart. As a Lupus Canada Ambassador he helps bring awareness to the autoimmune disease that his mother Diane was diagnosed with when DeRozan was a teenager.

He has been open about his mental health struggles by publicly sharing his own experiences with the hope to build awareness and put the spotlight on the importance of mind health and well-being. DeRozan’s mental health advocacy recently debuted in his new digital series “Dinners with DeMar”. As the host and Executive Producer, DeRozan engages fellow athletes, entertainers, and celebrities in authentic and revealing one-on-one conversations to break through the stigma associated with mental health. His journey culminates in being honored with the Medal of Valor from the Simon Wiesenthal Center, recognizing his remarkable act of compassion and solidarity towards the late Oron Beilin, an Israeli basketball fan tragically murdered on October 7, 2023. DeRozan's touching gesture embodies the gala's theme of combating hate with courage.

Eran Masas responded with a sense of duty, urgency and compassion on October 7th, during the devastating Hamas terrorist attack at the Nova music festival, rightfully earning him international respect and gratitude. A retired army reservist with 25 years of service, Masas sprang into action without hesitation upon learning of the unfolding events at the Nova festival. Donning his uniform and armed only with his personal firearm, he rushed to the scene where chaos reigned and lives hung in the balance. With bravery and determination, Masas combed through the carnage, searching for signs of life, offering solace to the wounded and traumatized survivors. His story is one of courage, sacrifice, and resilience in the face of unspeakable evil. He embodies the spirit of valor, serving as an inspiration to all who hear his story. It is with deep reverence and profound gratitude that we honor Eran Masas.
5:30pm - Cocktails and Experience the Mobile Museum of Tolerance
6:30pm - Dinner and Program 
3412 West Touhy Avenue
Skokie, IL 60076
Cocktail Attire
Valet Parking Available - Dietary Laws Observed
For more information: 312.981.0105 or socgala@wiesenthal.com