Charles Lafitte Foundation Raises $1 Million for Count Basie Theatre Endowment

12th Annual Charity Golf Classic Raises Record Proceeds

BRIELLE, NJ – At its 12th Annual Charity Golf Classic on June 29 at the Baltusrol Golf Club in Springfield, NJ, the Charles Lafitte Foundation (CLF) raised a record $1 million for Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank, this year’s beneficiary.

Count Basie Theatre is a world-class arts and entertainment venue in Red Bank, NJ, that fosters understanding and appreciation for the power of the performing arts and creates opportunity for cultural enrichment for people at all economic levels. The funds raised at this year’s Charity Golf Classic will create an endowment for arts and educational outreach programs at Count Basie Theatre, making the arts available to students of all backgrounds.

“We are incredibly grateful to the Charles Lafitte Foundation and all of the other supporters of the Golf Classic,” said Tom Widener, Chairman, Count Basie Theatre Board of Trustees. “The money raised will have a tremendously positive impact on our education programs, which are the soul of the Count Basie Theatre.”

Suzanne and Jeffrey Citron, CLF’s co-founders, matched each Golf Classic donation, dollar for dollar. Over the past 12 years, CLF’s Charity Golf Classic has raised nearly $6.5 million to improve the lives of countless individuals.

“Thanks to the generosity of our sponsors, we are proud to support Count Basie Theatre with the largest amount raised at this event in our foundation’s history”

– Jeffrey Citron, co-founder of CLF

These funds will help provide access to the arts for students of all socioeconomic levels for many years to come. We are extremely grateful to our Golf Classic partners, many who have supported this event for more than a decade, for their contributions in making this the most successful year.

The Count Basie Theatre’s educational mission is to provide a foundation of cultural enrichment to students of all ages and economic levels. These efforts include arts instruction and coursework, plus unique programs like teacher’s professional development and bus-in programs for students in underprivileged school districts.

Whether onsite at the historic Basie’s Performing Arts Academy, or offsite in the schools, the Citrons and supporters of the Charles Lafitte Foundation helped us raise one million dollars to advance the Count Basie Theatre’s mission,” said Adam Philipson, President and CEO, Count Basie Theatre. “The endowment created from this year’s Golf Classic will provide thousands of arts education and outreach opportunities for generations to come.”

Each year, CLF selects a different nonprofit organization as the beneficiary of its signature event. Since the first event in 2003, CLF has devoted the Golf Classic’s proceeds to a single organization that works to improve and enhance communities.

For more information about CLF, visit


About The Charles Lafitte Foundation

The Charles Lafitte Foundation (CLF) supports innovative and effective ways of helping people help themselves and others around them to achieve healthy, satisfying and enriched lives. The Foundation supports organizations working in four main areas: education, children’s advocacy, medical research & issues, and the arts. The Foundation underwrites programs that can become self-sustaining with long-term commitment and measurable impact.  In determining grants, CLF looks for solutions that lead to independence and self-empowerment for individuals, and to the establishment of effective, long-standing programs and organizations. For more information about the Charles Lafitte Foundation visit

About Count Basie Theatre

The primary mission of the Count Basie Theatre is to serve the people of the State of New Jersey by providing a broad spectrum of quality entertainment and education programs that reflect and celebrate the diversity of the region; foster understanding and appreciation for the ennobling power of the performing arts; and create opportunity for cultural enrichment for people at all economic levels. It also is our mission to develop and maintain a world-class venue that enhances the enjoyment of these entertainment and education programs; contributes to the cultural and economic vitality of the community and the region; and honors the memory of Count Basie.

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