Reds’ Senzel helping Children’s Home change lives as Rockin’ at Riverfest returns in person

The Children’s Home has announced its co-chairs for this year’s The Marge and Charles J. Schott Foundation Rockin’ at Riverfest, scheduled for Sept. 5 at Anderson Pavilion in Smale Riverfront Park.

Cincinnati Reds center fielder Nick Senzel and his fiancé, Emily Davis, will serve as honorary co-chairs for this year’s event.

The 2021 event co-chairs are Mark and Sara Mercurio, and Nick and Joelle Ragland.

Rod Hinton, Emily Davis, Nick Senzel, Joelle Ragland, Nick Ragland, Sara Mercurio, Mark Mercurio
Rod Hinton, Emily Davis, Nick Senzel, Joelle Ragland, Nick Ragland, Sara Mercurio, Mark Mercurio

Rockin’ is The Children’s Home’s marquee fundraiser and has a title sponsor for the first time since its inception. The event fuels the comprehensive education, behavioral and mental health services the agency provides to nearly 15,000 vulnerable children and families each year. Often called the Tristate region’s “Largest Party for a Cause,” the co-chairs are volunteers who lead on behalf of community partners who support one of Cincinnati’s largest and oldest nonprofits.

Nick Senzel is center fielder for the Cincinnati Reds and, during the height of the COVID pandemic last year, made a generous contribution to the Children’s Home’s CoStars preschool.

“Cincinnati is a community that thrives on teamwork and where people mutually support each other, so it’s only natural Emily and I lend our voices to this effort,” said Senzel. “I am very honored to be part of this organization that brings people together for a common and noble goal.”

“Last year, Rockin’ at Riverfest was virtual for the first time ever and the Cincinnati community stepped up and shattered the fundraising goals for our life-changing programs,” said John Banchy, president and CEO of The Children’s Home. “We have a goal of raising $500,000 at the 2021 Schott Foundation Rockin’ at Riverfest to support the services Cincinnati’s most vulnerable populations rely on. The leadership these talented men and women bring is a game-changer and I’m confident we’ll be successful.”

Nick Ragland is co-chair of the board of directors for The Gorilla Glue Company. Previously, he served as chief financial officer and co-president at Gorilla Glue. Nick has served the community he calls home in various capacities throughout his career.

Joelle Ragland is the owner of Cecitino Home, an interior design company. She currently serves her community on the board of trustees for SPCA Cincinnati, and previously held board positions at The Summit Country Day School and 4C for Children.

“Joelle and I have always instilled to our family the importance of striving toward community betterment and securing an equitable future for our neighbors,” said Nick Ragland. “Last year, we saw in real-time how important The Children’s Home is to our community, as the agency continued to serve when other support functions in our region were forced to close.”

Mark Mercurio is president and CEO of The Gorilla Glue Company. He has spent seven years working with the Ragland family to build and grow Gorilla Glue domestically and internationally, starting his tenure at the company in marketing and innovation. He serves the Cincinnati community as a member of The Children’s Home’s board of trustees and chairs the board’s marketing committee.

Sara Mercurio started her career in publishing with Cengage Learning. After taking some time to raise her and Mark’s three sons, Sara has found a passion for guiding young children as an assistant teacher at Montgomery Community Church’s preschool program. 

 “Simply put, Rockin’ at Riverfest is a vehicle that changes lives,” said Sara Mercurio. “Mark and I are fortunate to bring together local leaders who coalesce at a singular event, supporting our most vulnerable and at-risk populations. This is about securing better futures for Cincinnati.”

“Neighbors helping neighbors is the bedrock of our Queen City,” said Roderick Hinton, chief administrative officer of The Children’s Home. “We’ll be one of the first, large, in-person events, which is made possible through our partners at Anderson Pavilion putting safe protocols in place, as well as the overwhelming generosity and spirit of philanthropy at Rockin’ at Riverfest.”

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