Cleary University adopts tabletop format after successful event

Posted: June 17, 2013

HOWELL – When the decision was made to change the format of Cleary University’s annual scholarship fundraiser from a silent auction to a designer tabletop competition, organizers didn’t know how the event would be received.

“We wanted to have between 15-20 designers and we wanted to raise money for Cleary University students,” said Janet Filip, development director for Cleary and organizer of the event.

The event grossed more than $100,000 dollars and there were more than 25 designers who participated, including some of the most well-known designers in Michigan.

“We couldn’t have been happier with the support from the designers and sponsors,” Filip said. “It was a success and when we asked designers if they would be interested in doing it again next year, almost all of them said they would be back.”

Sandra Bostwick, of Ruby Slipper Design in Brighton, received the “People’s Choice” award for her “Enchanted Forest” design. She said she is ready to defend her title next year.

“Oh yeah!” exclaimed Bostwick about returning for the 2014 event. “My husband is already scared of what I will come up with! It was such a great event and I really fell in love with all of the people who were involved.”

Next year’s event is scheduled for Saturday, May 3.

Cleary University ( is an independent, not-for-profit, multi-campus, specialized business university, committed to the betterment of society through the success of its alumni and their employers; to operate as a role model of responsible business practice; to embrace quality management principles, innovation, and an attentive customer focus; and to aspire to a better future.

Cleary’s mission is to provide a practical, application-based education, which equips students to advance their careers.