Mayor Zimmerman honors Charlene Pate
Sugar Land Mayor Joe Zimmerman recently honored resident Charlene Pate for her role in the development of the Fort Bend Children’s Discovery Center in Sugar Land.
Over the last 29 years, Pate worked as member of the Board of Directors at Children’s Museum of Houston. Eventually, she served on the Museum’s Executive Committee as the Vice President of Special Initiatives where she ultimately became instrumental in establishing the Fort Bend Children’s Discovery Center in Sugar Land.
“You’re a truly extraordinary lady and to be that dedicated to children and to put that much of your heart and your life into this work, clearly you had to love doing it,” Mayor Zimmerman said during a proclamation award ceremony held at the Sept. 18 Sugar Land City Council meeting. “You’ve clearly done well not only by your community service but also by your family.”
In addition to volunteering her time and support, Pate and her family donated almost $1 million to support the Children’s Museum of Houston and the Fort Bend Children’s Discovery Center over the years. In addition, Pate helped raise over $4.6 million in donations for the Discovery Center’s Capital Campaign over the years.
“The reason I am so into children’s education is because my parents had to drop out of school in the eighth grade to help with their families’ finances. And, my husband’s parents couldn’t read or write. That spurred both of us to think education has got to be the way,” Pate said. “My goal is to somehow get every child that would never be able to come to the children’s museum, find a way to get them here. The way we do that is we are working with 90 family-service organizations in Fort Bend County, and they give passes to families for kids to come free. These are the kids that tug at my heart and I know they would benefit.”
More than 250,000 children and families have visited the Fort Bend Children’s Discovery Center since it opened as a summer satellite program in 2007. For more information, visit www.childrensdiscoveryfb.org