The Washington Redskins hosted the 58th Welcome Home Luncheon presented by The GCO Consulting Group on Wednesday, benefiting the Washington Redskins Charitable Foundation and the Redskins Alumni Association.
Redskins players, coaches and front office members -- including team owner Dan Snyder and president Bruce Allen -- gathered at the Washington Hilton in Washington D.C. to celebrate the beginning of the 2019 season, which kicks off in Philadelphia on Sept. 8. Also in attendance were multiple Redskins alumni, two DC City Council Members, White House Chef Andre Rush, sports anchor Lindsay Czarniak and Academy Award-winning actor Matthew McConaughey.
All proceeds from the event, annually the team's largest fundraiser of the year, will directly support the Charitable Foundation's Loads of Love initiative, which was launched in partnership with long snapper Nick Sundberg and his wife in 2017.
The Washington Redskins hosted their 58th Annual Welcome Home Luncheon presented by GCO Consulting Group, benefiting the Washington Redskins Charitable Foundation & Redskins Alumni Association.
The luncheon began with a VIP reception that included a step and repeat with the Redskins team award winners, as well as McConaughey. There was also a general reception featuring a silent auction and autograph signings.
The guests then congregated in the ballroom for the start of the program, which included player and coaches introductions and opening remarks from Czarniak, who served as the emcee for the luncheon for the second-straight year. It was also at this time that tight end Vernon Davis was named as the Community Man of the Year for his service and commitment to those in the Washington Metropolitan area.
"Every day we wake up, somebody is out there struggling," Davis said in his acceptance speech. "My only mission in life is to be able to help make a difference in this world, in this community."
The rest of the 2018 team awards occurred after lunch and included the following winners:
- Redskins Salute Award: Defensive lineman Jonathan Allen (introduced by Chef Andre Rush)
- Special Teams Player of the Year: Punter Tress Way (introduced by Mark Moseley)
- Offensive Player of the Year: Running back Adrian Peterson (introduced by Clinton Portis)
- Defensive Player of the Year: Outside linebacker Ryan Kerrigan (introduced by Charles Mann)
Following remarks from Scott Davidson of the GCO Consulting Group, the program concluded with a Q&A session between Czarniak and McConaughey.
The discussion covered his Redskins fandom and the connection between the Redskins Charitable Foundation and the just keep living foundation, which he launched with his wife, Camilla. According to the foundation's website, its mission centers around "empowering high school students by providing them with the tools to lead active lives and make healthy choices for a better future."
Eventually the conversation landed on the similarities between actors and professional athletes. In relating the two professions, McConaughey stressed the importance of preparation in order to succeed. He then ended the talk by providing the Redskins with words of encouragement entering the 2019 campaign.
"Let's think about that word legacy," McConaughey said. "There's a lot to do now, there's a lot to look forward to -- own it."