RESPONDing to Domestic Violence Gala Celebration Honors Author, Survivor Leslie Morgan Steiner

Photo of Middlesex District Attorney, Marian Ryan; Mayor Emeritus, Gene Brune; RESPOND Executive Director, Jessica Brayden


SOMERVILLE, MA– RESPOND Inc., New England’s first domestic violence agency and the second oldest in the nation, proudly presented the Timothy White Take A Stand Award to author, blogger and public speaker on violence against women, Leslie Morgan Steiner at the annual RESPONDing to Domestic Violence Gala. Steiner was recognized for turning her professional background into advocacy for abused women. Crazy Love, her 2009 memoir about surviving domestic violence, was a New York Times bestseller, and subject of the first TED Talk by a survivor of domestic violence. RESPOND proudly recognized Steiner’s commitment to the work to end domestic violence at the Gala, which raised $104,000 for the organization.


The fundraiser, held on October 14 at the Hotel Marlowe, raised necessary funds to support Somerville-based RESPOND’s core services for survivors of domestic violence. The funds raised- thanks to the generosity of guests and sponsors like Presenting Sponsor Pegasystems- support RESPOND’s services and programs which include emergency shelter for adults and children, a 24-hour crisis hotline, individual counseling, legal support in local courts, children’s services, community education and domestic violence support groups.


“We all have secrets we don’t reveal the first time we cross paths with others. This is mine. I fell in love with and married a man who beat me regularly and nearly killed me. Ah, if only being blond and well-educated were enough to defang life’s demons.” RESPOND Executive Director, Jessica Brayden, added “Domestic violence can happen to anyone. That is why it is important that we continue to work together- RESPOND, police, care givers, donors, neighbors, teachers, volunteers, and more. Our alliance is a critical weapon to combat domestic violence.”


The ballroom was a sea of new and long-time RESPOND supporters. Guests included leaders in the corporate, government, healthcare and nonprofit sectors, along with donors, community supporters and early pioneering staff members. The enthusiastic crowd raised their hands up for generous bids on live auction items that included Putnam club Patriots tickets, tickets to the I Love the 90’s concert, a VIP Ellen DeGeneres Show experience and a photo safari to South Africa.


Founded in 1974, RESPOND has a 42-year history of providing life-saving services to survivors of domestic violence and their children, serving over 130,000 individuals in need. Services are free and confidential. If you or someone you know is in an abusive situation, please call RESPOND’s 24-hour hotline at 617-623-5900. For more information on programs, volunteer opportunities or to make a donation please call 617-625-5996 or visit


About RESPOND, Inc.

RESPOND, Inc., New England’s first domestic violence agency and the second oldest in the nation reaches thousands of survivors of domestic violence each year through free, confidential community and shelter-based services. RESPOND is based in Somerville and serves communities throughout Greater Boston and beyond with special emphasis on Everett, Malden, Medford, Melrose, North Reading, Reading, Somerville, Cambridge, Stoneham, Wakefield, Winchester and Woburn. Programs and services include an emergency shelter, 24-hour crisis hotline, individual and group counseling, community outreach and educational programs. Services are available in multiple languages. For assistance, please call RESPOND’s 24-hour hotline at 617-623-5900. For information on volunteering or to make a donation please call 617-625-5996 or visit



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