The Center for Pursuit annual luncheon celebrates the opportunity to rise and thrive

HOUSTON, TX –The Center for Pursuit’s (The Center) annual luncheon had the welcoming and cozy feel of Sunday brunch at your favorite coffee shop. Picture quiche, smooth java from Bitty & Beau’s Coffee Houston, and an inspiring chat with dear friends and family dedicated to helping individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), autism or similar conditions achieve their full potential to rise and thrive, this year’s luncheon theme.

The event held May 19, 2023, at the River Oaks Country Club, brought in $196 thousand in support of The Center’s programs for choice, growth, and independence.

Chairing the luncheon were Victoria Beard and Lance Reynolds. ABC13 weekend sports anchor Adam Winkler was the emcee, and local Bitty & Beau’s Coffee Houston franchise owners Drew and Kelly Scoggins were there as special guests to speak about why they are one of The Center’s more than 50 community business partners.

Bitty and Beau’s is a North Carolina-based coffee shop company with a mission to employ people with disabilities ranging from Down syndrome to autism and cerebral palsy. Six employees at the Scoggins’ Bitty & Beau’s franchise in Rice Village came from The Center’s employment services program, which provides job training and assistance for transitioning youth and adults in the IDD community. The program helped a total of 296 individuals and placed 57 clients in jobs in 2022. So far, in 2023, The Center has supported 146 individuals and placed 26 clients in jobs.

The success of this year’s luncheon is due in part to the support of its sponsors Maire and David Baldwin, EIV Capital, Kate and Steve Gibson, Michelle and Glen Shephard, H-E-B, Icon Wealth Partners, Goldman Sachs & Co., Paula and Jeff Paine, Drew and Kelly Scoggins, Jackie and Connelly McGreevy, Amy and Michael Walton, InduMar Products, McGriff Insurance Services, Midway Foundation, Piper Sandler, Valero, and Wildcat Oil Tools.

Adding to the day’s fun were prizes donated by Goode Company Barbeque, The Wine Man David Maggard, J. McLaughlin’s on West Gray St. in Houston, and Cullen Caners, The Center’s precision restorers of cane, wicker, and rush furniture.


About The Center for Pursuit
For more than seven decades, The Center for Pursuit (The Center) has empowered individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), autism, and similar conditions to live meaningful, dignified lives filled with opportunity. Through innovative programs and services in areas like job skills training, supported employment, health and wellness, community living, and day services, The Center helps clients develop the skills and tools necessary to grow as individuals and participate fully in their community. Now with expanded offerings for a younger demographic, the organization serves a total client base of approximately 200 children, adolescents, and young adults and more than 450 adults in the Houston area.

Contact: Janice Evans,, 832.499.8687