Roy Jay Event Packs Convention Center Ballroom

Roy Jay Event Packs Convention Center Ballroom


Friday night, December 14th at Oregon Convention Center, the lights of the tall towers beamed bright as business entrepreneur and man about town, Roy Jay, held his annual “Spam and Velveeta Holiday” event.

After TicketMaster turned him down to promote the sale of the event tickets, Jay utilized various nonprofit organizations to sell tickets to the event and gave them a percentage of each sale. The results were a standing room only event packed into the convention center with all of the effects of a Las Vegas elegant evening. Headlining the event was Mary Wilson of the Supremes fame who captivated the audience with solid hits of the 60’s and a blend of holiday music which left the audience begging for more.

“If it is a Roy Jay event, you know that many people in Portland will be there” said David Saltzman Vice President of Bank of the West who was one of the major supporting sponsors. The list of sponsors included the who’s who in Portland including millionaires, wannabe millionaires and retirees. All of who like to refer to themselves as “Cousins of Roy Jay”.

The evening was filled with a variety of excitement, tears and laughter. Aside from Mary Wilson of the Supremes, other highlights included a tearful story of the plight of Melanie Powell who went from homeless to hopeful thanks to the generosity of Roy Jay’s Project Clean Slate and the African American Chamber of Commerce and other local agencies and business entrepreneurs. Today she is not only gainfully employed at Legacy Emanuel Hospital, but also a 4.0 student at Oregon Health Sciences University.

Nate Miles, a corporate executive of Eli Lily told about how Project Clean Slate assisted his brother who was facing demons.

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Toyota Dealers of Portland teamed up with Roy to give away a Toyota Prius 2. The $50 per ticket raffle yielded a winner, Janelle Brown who purchased only one ticket from a representative of Delta Sigma Theta, one of nonprofit recipients from ticket sales that evening.

Jay explained where the title “Spam and Velveeta Holiday Event” came from. “It reminds me of my upbringing as our family had to dine on Spam and Velveeta during my formative years. It also keeps me grounded to never forget where I come from.

One of the highlights of the evening as the audience observed Portland City Commissioner, Amanda Fritz on stage in her eye popping After 5 attire belting out the words to every Supreme song as she and others were backing up Mary Wilson.
In past years Jay has held the event at his east Portland home but this year had to move to the Oregon Convention Center because the invitation only list went from 250 to over 700 friends, associates, colleagues and business partners.
Jay and his staff are already looking forward to 2013 and have started laying out the ground work for next December. He has not disclosed how he intends to top this performance, but he says that he will.

Non profit organizations that want to benefit from this effort should contact the African American Chamber eight months in advance to be considered.

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