Save the date for The George H.W. Bush Points of Light Awards Sixth Annual Celebration, an evening celebrating the transformative power of service and civic engagement.

OCTOBER 23, 2024

Capital Hilton | Washington, D.C.

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Arthur M. Blank | 2024 Honoree

Blank Family of Businesses

A renowned entrepreneur as co-founder of The Home Depot, Arthur M. Blank is now recognized for his values-based Blank Family of Businesses and as one of America’s leading philanthropists. A native of Queens, N.Y. and a Babson College business school graduate, Blank’s philosophy of creating value for companies, customers and communities has led him to be distinguished by Forbes as one of the World’s 100 Greatest Living Business Minds and as one of America’s Top 50 Givers. He was Sports Business Journal’s Sports Executive of the Year in 2018.

Blank believes that a “good company” produces both profit and purpose towards a better world – an idea he developed with his friend Bernie Marcus when they started The Home Depot in 1978 and opened the first two stores in Atlanta. As game-changing business icons, their vision transformed America into a country of empowered do-it-yourselfers while building The Home Depot into the world’s largest home improvement retailer and one of the nation’s most profitable and socially responsible companies.

After leaving The Home Depot as its co-chairman in 2001, Blank began to build his current family of businesses: AMB Sports + Entertainment includes the National Football League Atlanta Falcons, Major League Soccer 2018 champion Atlanta United, America’s largest golf retailer PGA TOUR Superstore, and the state-of-the-art Mercedes-Benz Stadium, home to the Atlanta United and Falcons and host of the 2019 Super Bowl; and AMB West in Montana includes the recently purchased Paradise Valley Ranch, the philanthropic West Creek Ranch, and Mountain Sky Guest Ranch, Travel + Leisure’s Top 10 Resorts in the American West.

While diverse in nature, all these industry-leading businesses operate on six core values developed by Blank that focus on serving people, treating Associates with respect, and supporting communities.

As an early signer of The Giving Pledge, Blank lives his “give back to others” core value by investing the majority of his wealth and time to help people – particularly children – live healthier, more productive lives. He meets this pledge primarily through The Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation. Formed in 1995, the Foundation leverages the power of “connected philanthropy” to partner with difference makers and find lasting solutions to complex problems.

Leading synergistic philanthropy for all the socially responsible Blank Family of Businesses, the Foundation has thus far granted $600 million to help underserved people in the challenging arenas of youth development and education, green space growth and conservation, the arts, health and wellness, social justice and democracy, military and veteran support, and community transformation – to include Atlanta’s historic Westside neighborhood.

Blank resides in Atlanta and is the father of six children and has six grandchildren. Consistent with his passion for family, work and community, his favorite T-shirt reads “There is no finish line.” Never settling for today’s best, his legacy of success eyes the next challenge to continue providing extraordinary experiences for customers, fans, guests and Associates while also serving those in need.

Ashley Brown | 2024 Honoree

Selfless Love Foundation

Ashley Brown believes that family is a gift and that every child deserves one. Her adoption as an infant changed the trajectory of her life. Ashley grew up in Fort Pierce, Florida in a family that valued a strong work ethic and pursuing your dreams.

From a young age, Ashley rodeoed all over the United States and participated in community projects and organizations. After obtaining a degree in communications from the University of Central Florida, Ashley began a career as a model and spokesperson, winning awards as a speaker for the Future Business Leaders of America. Ashley later launched a successful career in sales and was recognized for her client relationships and career advancement.

In 2015, Ashley and her husband Ed Brown, former CEO of Tequila Patrón, founded Selfless Love Foundation. The nonprofit is dedicated to improving the child welfare system and creating opportunities for more foster children to find their forever families and thrive in adulthood.

Ashley works tirelessly with her team to impact the lives of current and former foster youth. The Florida Coalition for Children gave Ashley the 2019 “Lighting the Way Award” for Selfless Love Foundation’s work in adoptions. The Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute called Ashley, “one of our brightest angels” naming her a 2020 Angels in Adoption Honoree.

Patrick Dempsey | 2024 Honoree

Dempsey Center

Patrick Dempsey can most recently be seen in Michael Mann’s Ferrari where he portrays Piero Taruffi and is featured alongside Adam Driver. Prior to this, he starred in Eli Roth’s horror film Thanksgiving and the Disney+ film Disenchanted, opposite Amy Adams. Other recent credits include the SKY television series “Devils,” and the EPIX mini-series “The Truth About the Harry Quebert Affair.”

Dempsey is best known for his portrayal of Dr. Derek Shepherd on the hit ABC series, Grey’s Anatomy from 2005-2015. His performance earned him a 2007 Screen Actors Guild Award and was nominated in 2006 and 2007 for a Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series – Drama. Patrick recently returned for a recurring arc in the 17th season.

Patrick’s production company, Shifting Gears produces content for both film and television. Titles include the Disney feature The Art of Racing in the Rain and The Orchard documentary Hurley.

Patrick’s film credits include: Bridget Jones’s Baby, Transformers: Dark of The Moon, Valentine’s Day, Made of Honor, Enchanted, Freedom Writers, Sweet Home Alabama, Scream 3, With Honors, Outbreak, Hugo Pool, The Treat, The Palace Thief, Heaven Help Us, Happy Together, Some Girls, Coupe De Ville, Run, Mobsters, and In the Mood. Dempsey became well known from such classic ‘80s nostalgia films such as, Can’t Buy Me Love and Loverboy.

Dempsey first appeared onstage as David in the San Francisco production of Torch Song Trilogy.  Other early-stage work included On Golden Pond for the Maine Acting Company, the international touring production of Brighton Beach Memoirs which was directed by Gene Saks and The Subject Was Roses at the Roundabout Theatre in New York.  He also took the stage in The Pasadena Playhouse run of The Importance of Being Earnest as Algernon Moncrieff.

Dempsey was born and raised in Lewiston, Maine. In 2008, with the intention of giving back to the community where he grew up and where his mother first received cancer treatment in 1997, Patrick founded the Dempsey Center to help make life better for people managing the impact of cancer.  Since 2009, Patrick has returned to Lewiston-Auburn every fall for the annual Dempsey Challenge.  The annual fundraiser raises funds, so all services offered by the Center are free of charge. In 2016, Patrick took on an advisory role and in 2018 he became a Dempsey Center board member so he could continue to help support those impacted by cancer.

Dempsey resides in Los Angeles.


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President Bill Clinton

President George W. Bush

President Barack Obama


Lawrence E. Bathgate, II


Frank and Liz Blake

Lauren Bush Lauren and David Lauren

Marie and Andy Unanue


Stephanie Absmeier

Jean Becker

Neil M. Bush

John Deighton

Lara Fawaz

Lauren Bush Lauren

Shelli Lockhart

Jacquelyne and Mike Love

Gregg Petersmeyer

Eric Tanenblatt

Marie Unanue

Learn About Past Recipients

Learn more about how past recipients of The George H.W. Bush Points of Light Awards honor the traits of our 41st president.