“I have witnessed shy students who say very few words in class come alive on stage.  The self-
confidence they gain, the pride they feel , the connections they make  - are immeasurable.”
Heather Wassenberg, School Teacher

“I wanted to thank you for all of the support you gave me when I was growing up.  Golden had
such a positive effect on my life, and I wanted you to know that.  I will never forget the  times you
would speak to me in the theatre and tell me whatever it was you told me to boost my
confidence.  Because it still hasn’t worn off.  I am so lucky to have had you in my life.”   
Mark Saul, TV/Film actor

“I can always tell the Golden kids in my class.  When it comes time for oral reports, they are the
only ones who are not afraid.”
Dwight Protho, Hale Middle School Teacher

"Thank you Shelli & Golden for making my middle school days so fun. Being homeschooled at that
time because of my schedule wasn't easy, but because of Golden, I found a place where I
belonged.  I made so many new friends and had such a great time doing the shows.  I'll always be
Steffani Brass Vaughn, TV/Film Actress

“In any other setting, Michael would not be given the opportunity to succeed as he has
at Golden in light of his autism disability.  He has begun to emerge out of his shell and to
experience self-confidence we never knew he possessed.  I don’t recall ever seeing him so happy
and engaged.  He has found the one venue where he is accepted by his peers and treated as an
Wade & Sondra Chernick, parents of GPAC performer

“I really want to thank you for keeping the teen program together.  I know it’s not a source of
revenue and can be a hassle to keep up, but you have provided such a great service to me by
giving me this environment to live in every week.  I have made best friends and unforgettable
experiences.  From my childhood, you guys have given me a haven to express myself - an
emotional and creative playground.  Golden has really been the crux of my childhood and teenage
development.  I’m happy with who I am, and, for that, I want to thank you.”  
Adam Leotta, student NYU

“Up until the day I left for college, I spent 15 amazing years performing working and volunteering
at Golden.  Every break from school, I visit my hometown and attend the latest Golden play.  I will
soon be graduating with an M. A. in Theatre Arts at 22-years-old, ahead of the curve.  I can
honestly say that I would not be the person I am today if it were not for Golden and the formative
years I spent with them.  No other group impacts our community as greatly as Golden.”     
Joan Hurwit, M.A.

“I recently performed ‘If I Were a Rich Man’ in my acting class.  It was the last thing my acting
teacher, Milton Katselas, saw me do before he passed away.  It got a two-minute standing ovation
, and he told me that I’m going to play the role on Broadway someday.  It got me thinking about
Golden and how much you guys gave me in terms of my belief in myself, my ability and my work
ethic.  I don’t think I’d be anyplace close to where I am now if it wasn’t for you.”    
Jeremy Radin, Author, Poet, Actor

“When I was young I lost my best friend to leukemia.  Just around this time I found Golden PAC.  
Golden welcomed me and provided a home away from home.  It was not just a place to perform in
plays; it was a family that offered love and support in an incredibly difficult time in my life.  My story
is not unique.  Without Golden, many of my friends’ lives would have been empty.  Golden filled us
with the things teenagers need.”      
Joshua Di Paolo, PhD Candidate, University of Wisconsin

“Beginning Golden long ago was without a doubt the best decision of my life, and I am who I am
today solely because of it.  I have learned so much about myself, the people around me, and life in
general.  I have had the chance to meet amazing people who make me feel comfortable with who I
am, and I have had the chance to feel important and special.  Not very many teenagers can say
they have truly experienced these feelings.  Thank you for all you have given me.  I truly could not
imagine what my life would be without Golden.”     
Molly Davis, student Bucknell University

"What a phenomenal show and what phenomenal young people... all of you are so
special and give so much of yourselves to our kids.  Words don't adequately express
my gratitude and respect for you and this outstanding program.  Whatever path our son
follows, he will have been well-served from his experience in your theatre program."   
Kim Morganella, parent of GPAC performer

You and Golden mean so much to us. As second-time-around parents, I believe we
have a wider ("interesting" and blessed) perspective... And we deeply appreciate the
sense of family, the sense of accomplishment, and the sense of being a part of the arts,
that you all nurture and treasure so well.  It is indeed magical to watch an 11-year-old
using a computer to look up Cole Porter songs rather than video games and the like!"   
Laura Meadows, parent of GPAC performer