One from the Heart
As Margie tells it, in 1996 something happened that changed not only a piece of their lives, but the lives of an untold number of young children. A group of people wanted to build a Boys and Girls Club on Hilton Head Island. Stan was asked to be the Chairman of the capital campaign for the "dream." In his own style, and using the leadership qualities that had made him a well-known tennis champion, he took it on. They started from nowhere, with very little, and of course today, our local Club is a model, and the facility offers opportunities for more than 400 members, with daily classes, golf, tennis, gardening, TV production, sports, cooking classes, homework assistance, tutoring, and numerous other programs.
Both Stan and Margie have a long history with The Boys and Girls Club of Hilton Head Island, and with the completion of the building, they both served as members of the Board of Directors.
PINK: How long did you serve on the Board? You and Stan were founding members, were you not?
MARGIE: Yes, we were, and I served for several years. I soon realized, though, that it was not my passion. Where I did the most good was as a volunteer. I homeschooled our children for 13 years, and I loved it. I felt such a void when they went off to school. The Club was the perfect place for me, and afternoon tutoring became my favorite thing to do. I am at the Club four afternoons a week. I tutor, but I also spend time with the members just hanging out. They enjoy the company and so do I. We play Ping-Pong, do jigsaw puzzles, or just talk about what went on in school that day. I am sure to always encourage them. I am impressed with how happy the kids are at the Club and the opportunities that are afforded to them. There is no question in my mind that what the Club offers to these children is invaluable to our community. Each day when I leave the Club, I ask myself: "What would they have done this afternoon if the Club were not here?"
I always encourage people to come visit the Club. I know they will be surprised. Without exception, people are so impressed with what happens here. We change lives. Our motto is "We are the positive place for kids."
PINK: What else do you do at the Club?
MARGIE: My other favorite thing! For the past 13 years, Stan and I have co-chaired the Boys and Girls Club Spring Gala. It is the Club's major fundraiser and has brought in over $1,000,000! We desperately need these funds to continue to offer all of the excellent programs and opportunities. This year's Gala is on March 23 and it promises to be the best ever. We offer a lovely evening of dining and dancing, and I know you will say that many other non-profits do too, but no one has a silent auction or live auction like ours. It is known to be the best and with good reason. Many of our items are both priceless and unique.
PINK: What are some of your "one-of-a-kind" items?
MARGIE: We have Wimbledon tickets, golf at most local courses, a home in Sun Valley, Idaho, sailing cruises, a fabulous home on the water in Barbados, a beautiful mountain cabin, Duke/UNC basketball tickets, a US Open package, handmade quilts, unique jewelry and handbags, a villa in Umbria, a bottle of 1926 French Cognac, a Victorian Doll House, a spa makeover, a ladies package called Eat Dessert First, a gentleman's package, and I could go on and on.
PINK: That sounds fabulous. What do you think is your most unique item?
MARGIE: Oh, I would say perhaps the tickets and package for the French Open are quite special. No one else has anything like that I am sure. The people who bought it last year had a fabulous time, then added on their own special trip to Monte Carlo!
PINK: I know you do many other things here. What else do you feel you do that is in keeping with your philosophy?
MARGIE: I belong to Women in Philanthropy. That is an organization of dedicated local women with the vision of coming together to make a difference in the Lowcountry. I believe it is important for everyone to give back to society in some way, and this group is really an example of how women can bring about positive change in so many different ways.
PINK: Do you have words to live by?
MARGIE: I keep in mind a quote by Dr. Albert Schweitzer that has always resonated with me: "I don't know what our destiny will be, but one thing I do know: The only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve."
I am thankful that I have found a way to serve this wonderful community.
Talk about a love story-Stan and Margie first met when she was 13-years-old and he was 18-years-old. She was a ball girl at a tennis tournament in which he was competing. The rest, as they say, is history!
Tennis great Stan Smith and his wife, Margie, came to Hilton Head Island in the early 1970s, when he first became the Touring Pro for Sea Pines Resort. They always felt they would live in California, but Hilton Head Island worked its magic on them, as it has on so many others. The more time they spent here, the more they loved it. They also thought it would be a wonderful place to raise their four children Ramsey, Trevor, Logan and Austin. They were right. As longtime residents, they all led a happy, healthy, outdoor life style.