Annual Report 2017

The Mission of the Foundation

Benefiting Children in Need in Northwest Florida

The mission of Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation (DCWAF) is to connect wine enthusiasts to raise money to benefit children in need in Northwest Florida. Founded in 2005, DCWAF has donated nearly $16 million to Northwest Florida charities by hosting world-class wine and culinary events. These funds have impacted the lives of over 90,000 youth, including those afflicted by health issues and abuse. Currently ranked #3, DCWAF has been recognized as one of the nation’s ‘Top 10 Charity Wine Auctions in the U.S.’ by Wine Spectator Magazine, for five consecutive years.
Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation proudly partners with the following agencies:

AMIKids Emerald Coast, Boys & Girls Clubs of the Emerald Coast, Children in Crisis, Inc., Children’s Volunteer Health Network, Emerald Coast Autism Center, Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Center, Food for Thought Outreach, Habitat for Humanity of Walton County, The Arc of the Emerald Coast, Mental Health Association of Okaloosa & Walton Counties, Opportunity Place, Inc., Pathways for Change, Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast, Shelter House of Northwest Florida, and Youth Village.

quote_left“We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.”quote_left

– Winston Churchill


BENEFICIARY Charities Of 2017

changing the lives of children

Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation donated $2,700,000 to 15 Northwest Florida children’s charities on August 22 at WaterColor LakeHouse, marking the Foundation’s largest charitable distribution to date. Celebrating its 12 year anniversary, DCWAF has now donated more than $15 million to non-profit organizations serving children in Northwest Florida. This year’s results are an increase over the $2.66 million raised last year. In addition to funding the 15 local charities, DCWAF also donated $15,000 to the DCWAF Children’s Fund, a fund created to assist the Foundation’s partner charities in emergency situations.
This fund is cash held in a separate account available to any of the DCWAF charities who have an imminent need.

“DCWAF now has a safety net of funds for any of our charities that may have an emergency requirement for funds outside our normal contributions. It is our hope to continue to grow this fund over the coming years.” – John Russell, DCWAF President

AMIKids Emerald Coast

AMIKids Emerald Coast received $120,000 to fund a variety of behavioral modification programs and scholarships for secondary education.



Boys & Girls Clubs of the Emerald Coast

Boys & Girls Clubs of the Emerald Coast received $200,000 to allow double the amount of students from last year (200 children across four counties) to attend programming for one full year. The programming is designed to provide unique opportunities to learn, grow and to recognize youth for their achievements in an effort to steer youth clear of personal failure.



Children in Crisis

Children in Crisis received $225,000 to fund the facilitation of housing for abused, neglected and abandoned children. On-site housing provides stability, shelter, house parents, food, clothing and necessary items to help 100 children live a healthy lifestyle over the next year.



Children’s Volunteer Health Network

Children’s Volunteer Health Network (CVHN) received $225,000 to fund and serve underinsured and uninsured children in need of dental care. These funds will allow for two hygienists on the Mobile Dental Clinic, and one full-time dentist and support staff at the CVHN Dental Clinic to assist with children in need of dental and medical care. In addition, they will be able to purchase new detail supplies and cover the maintenance and repairs of their equipment.



Emerald Coast Autism Center

Emerald Coast Autism Center received $200,000 to fund scholarships for approximately 12 families and the next phase of their capital campaign. The new Northwest Florida State College campus facility has allowed Emerald Coast Autism Center to increase their capacity levels, serving up to 130 students.



Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Center

Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Center received $225,000 to support mental health therapy, medical programs, and a case advocacy program that facilitates a child-friendly atmosphere offering counseling, family services, and coordination of investigations for child abuse and neglect.



Food For Thought Outreach

Food for Thought Outreach received $240,000 to provide nutritious meals for school-aged children on weekends, holidays and summer break. This year’s funding will facilitate over 200,000 meals and snack items for children in Okaloosa and Walton counties.



Habitat for Humanity of Walton County

Habitat for Humanity of Walton County received $150,000 to fully fund the building of two new homes for families with children in Walton County.



Mental Health Association of Okaloosa and Walton Counties

Mental Health Association of Okaloosa and Walton Counties is DCWAF’s newest beneficiary and received $150,000 to fund “The Brain Health Initiative” geared toward early identification, assessment and treatment for students ages 12 to 21 who experience mental health or substance abuse issues.



Opportunity Place, Inc.

Opportunity Place received $85,000 for immediate housing for homeless children and their families.
Opportunity Place, Inc., provides temporary emergency shelter and hope for a brighter future for women and families with minor children.



Pathways For Change

Pathways for Change received $170,000 for comprehensive addiction treatment programs including men’s residential treatment and operations for the family center.



Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast

Sacred Heart Hospital on the Emerald Coast received $225,000 to fund the expansion of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit which will provide a larger nursery to accommodate a 10-bed Level II Neonatal Intensive Care Unit in the future.



Shelter House of Northwest Florida

Shelter House of Northwest Florida received $170,000 to fund support groups, counseling and advocacy for youth touched by domestic violence. Funding will also support their Youth Prevention Program, therapists for children, supplies such as school snacks and diapers, tutoring materials, community outings, and the Youth Community Action Team.



The Arc of the Emerald Coast

The Arc of the Emerald Coast received $200,000 to support Early Intervention and Family Education Program at the Early Intervention Center for children living with disabilities.



Youth Village

Youth Village received $100,000 to fund after-school programming for more than 40 low-income children along the Emerald Coast.




Our Progress

DCWAF continues to show remarkable growth in revenue while keeping costs nearly flat. In 2017, total expenses increased by only $13,885 or 1.2% compared to 2016. Administrative costs actually decreased by $56,412 or 13.6%.


Since the inception of DCWAF

DCWAF has been able to dramatically increase donated funds to supported charities. The combined contribution to charities in the first six years was $3,500,000.

In the last four years, DCWAF has contributed $9,695,000 or 61.4% of total donated funds since the first auction in 2006. As a result, the number of charities supported has risen from three in 2006 to 15 in 2017.



Events: 2016-2017 In Review

12th annual Destin Charity Wine Auction

April 28 – April 30, 2017


Currently ranked #3 in the country by Wine Spectator Magazine, The Destin Charity Wine Auction Weekend has
been recognized in the “Top 10 U.S. Charity Wine Auctions” by the magazine for the last five consecutive years. The Foundation’s largest annual event, the auction takes place over the last weekend in April each year. The event draws wine aficionados, gourmet chefs and celebrity vintners from around the globe to enjoy world-class wines in the picture-perfect setting & white sand beaches of the Northwest Florida’s Emerald Coast. Funds raised benefit 15 local charities impacting the lives of children in need.






Paddle Raise

A tradition Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation is particularly proud of is the “Paddle Raise.” The year Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation was created, Chan Cox, DCWAF founder, lost his 30 year old son, Clinton, to the devastating effects of addiction. A memorial fund was created to bring awareness and build a legacy for Clinton from the proceeds of a paddle raise at the live auction. Pathways For Change (PFC) is a faith based organization funded initially by Baptist Hospital in Pensacola, Florida. Since 2005, PFC has served hundreds of men in intensive substance abuse treatment. Their mission of Changing Lives, Reducing Crime, Building Futures is actively preventing heartbreaking losses. Since 2007, DCWAF has raised over $1,000,000 so men and their families could be set free to live the lives God intended for us all.



Top Selling lots

celebrity vintners


During the Wine Auction weekend, 14 Patron Dinners were held in notable restaurants and private homes in the area. These dinners pair celebrity chefs with participating vintners to create a memorable dining experience for every attendee. The Foundation is especially thankful to the Patron Hosts who opened the doors to their homes and restaurants and set the stage for the auction weekend. Auctions at each of these dinners recorded revenues of over $560,000, with $154,000 raised at Food for Thought Outreach’s dinner hosted by Jack and Candis Wilson’s dinner featuring Alpha Omega and Tolosa Winery, and Chef Matthew Basford.

“It is our hosts who create the anticipation for the auction, it is our hosts that take such great care of our vintners and chefs, and it is our hosts who start us off with great auction revenue from their dinners. Each is an amazing contributor to the success of our mission and truly a force for good in our community,” marveled Russell.



Patron & Restaurant Dinner Hosts

Jim & Ann Barri with Cory & Hilary Fosdyck
Don & Janis Bishop with Jane Solomon & Colin Mayo
George & Stephanie Brannon Jr. with Jeff & Cindy Garrard at Churchill Oaks
Dr. Bill & Pam Burden
Christine Carter & Ken Bryant
Stephen & Joan Carter
Harriet Crommelin at Cafe Thirty-A
Ben & Tiffany Edwards with Jeanne Dailey & Jay Nettles at the Sandestin Beach Club

Don & Cathy Hay with Bill & Sharon Stark at Bijoux
Drs. Mike & Lan O’Donnell with Michael & Rebecca Scozzafave
John & Margaret Sheehan
Bert & Sue Trucksess
Pamela Wellborn with Chef Tim Creehan at Cuvée 30A
Jack & Candis Wilson

Live auction Chef

Chris & Ivy Trovas of Wild Olives

Other Events

26th Annual Seaside Seeing Red Wine Festival

November 3-5, 2016

The SEASIDE® Seeing Red Wine Festival has grown to be a sell-out event, attracting wine connoisseurs and novices alike. The Seeing Red Wine Festival has been recognized as one of the “Top 10 Can’t-Miss Fall Wine Festivals” by Fodor’s Travel.

The four days of festivities include reserve wine tastings, dinners, and a brunch with featured guest winemakers. Several of Seaside’s well-known restaurants showcase how their farm-to-fork and gulf-to-table offerings pair beautifully with the featured red wines.


Seeing Red Wine Festival Revenue

Volume One: A Pop-Up Dinner Series

January 21, 2017

Volume 1, DCWAF’s first in a series of pop-up dinners, was held at 560 Grand Boulevard. Modeled after Jacksonville’s Legend Series, Volume 1 showcased a themed, multi-course menu created by some of the best celebrity chefs in the culinary industry paired with exquisite wines and entertainment. Guests purchased their tickets without knowing the theme or location in advance, and were surprised on the morning of the event to learn that DCWAF staff was taking them back in time to the Storyville era of New Orleans.


Amount Raised

South Walton Beaches Wine & Food Festival

April 27 – 29, 2017

The Northwest Florida Beaches Ultimate Wine Weekend is the last weekend in April each year. We are lucky to partner with the South Walton Beaches Wine and Food Festival. Both events take place on the lawn of Grand Boulevard and a handful of vintners participate in the festivities of the entire weekend. The 5th Annual South Walton Beaches Wine and Food Festival featured 800 wines, poured by notable national and international wine celebrities including Don Hartford from Hartford Family Winery, Glenn Salva from Antica Napa Valley, and Franco Massolino from Massolino.

Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation benefits from the proceeds of the South Walton Beaches Wine & Food Festival. This year we graciously accepted a check for $15,000 to help further our mission.

quote_left“We are incredibly proud of our partnership with DCWAF and remain stalwart supporters of the Foundation and the important work they continue do in our community. They truly make a difference in people’s lives.”quote_left

– Stacey Brady, Executive Director, South Walton Beaches Wine & Food Festival and Marketing Director, Grand Boulevard at Sandestin


quote_left“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”quote_left

– Gandhi

Thank you to our volunteers who dedicate their time throughout the year to facilitate DCWAF’s fundraising efforts. Their generosity ensures the success of the Foundation. This year, we are proud and honored to donate a record-breaking $2.7 million to our 15 charity partners to help impact the future of our community’s children. Our volunteers are a key element to our success and we are grateful for their hard work and dedication to the DCWAF mission.

Look to the Future


November 2-5, 2017

Watercolor, FL

Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation has been involved in the production of a number of wine festivals over the years. For the first time, the Foundation is producing a multi-day, stand alone event in the beautiful town of WaterColor. Harvest Wine & Food Festival will provide patrons the opportunity to sip and savor some of the world’s finest wine and culinary selections while raising money for children in need in Northwest Florida.


Our Sponsors









To become a sponsor visit for more information or call us at (850) 650-3732.

Leadership of the Vision & Mission


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