One of the founding members of The Spine Foundation, Tracie Domino spends her days improving the lives of men and women who have sustained spinal injuries as a result of serving in the US military. The South Tampa resident handles all of the major gift and community relations duties for the organization. Because of her great work and the work of others like Tracie, The Spine Foundation identified a veteran who was experiencing back and leg pain, got him properly diagnosed and funded a minimally invasive spine surgery for him. He’s now competing in triathlons pain-free. Tracie’s commitment to her cause is just one of many reasons she was chosen as a Leading Lady for 2011.
What is one of your favorite charity events in Tampa and why?
The Spine Foundation’s Back-to-Back Ball. I was fortunate to be able to primarily design the style of the event which was a combination of high-energy cocktail party, headline entertainment and an incredible auction. Our inaugural event secured $1.25 million in pro bono medical services to provide the world’s most scientifically advanced spine care to those who need it most.
Who do you most admire in Tampa?
There are so many incredible people in this city, but I would have to say the ladies of the Outback Bowl Hospitality Committee—specifically: Betty Wood, Pat Daley, Barbara Major and Nadine Hines. They have been making a difference in this city for decades and have had a hand in the establishment and success of many of our most effective non-profits.
Outside of charity work, what inspires you?
As a member of Leadership Tampa 2012 I’m getting to see how the entire community is coming together to make Tampa Bay shine bright next August during the Republican National Convention. The amount of teamwork and planning involved is truly inspiring.
Now that we’re entering the holiday season, what is one of your favorite memories with your family?
My family is awesome and I have a ton of favorite memories. The year we decided to spend Thanksgiving at the Bellagio in Las Vegas eating at the buffet and playing blackjack stands out as a great one. My family is pretty traditional and my mother is a wonderful cook, so everything about that Thanksgiving was out of character for us.
What are a couple of your cherished holiday traditions?
It’s a big joke in my family that we don’t have any traditions and my Dad tries to invent a new one every year, but in reality we have a ton of them. My favorite is playing board games around the table after Christmas dinner with my loud, Italian family. We discuss every year which family members would make the cut if we were ever contestants on the Family Feud.
What are your favorite kinds of gifts to give and receive?
My favorite gifts to give are things that are fun and useful but that you wouldn’t buy for yourself. My favorites to receive tend to have to do with different types of experiences or places to visit. Though I would never turn down a great handbag or pair of shoes!
What is your favorite hero of fiction?
Currently, I would say Aibileen from Kathryn Stockett’s The Help. She knew that speaking out was the only way to effect positive social change.
If you had one wish this holiday season, what would it be?
To take the time to truly enjoy being with all the people I see during the holiday season.
What is your motto or words you live by?
Well-behaved women rarely make history.
(from The Junior League of Tampa’s Savor The Seasons)
Yield: 29 (4-ounce) servings
2 cups unsweetened pineapple juice
1 cup brandy
1 cup Triple Sec
1/2 cup Chambord
4 cups ginger ale, chilled
2 (750-milliliter) bottles cava*, chilled
1. Combine the pineapple juice, brandy and liqueurs in a large bowl
2. Chill, covered, for 4 hours or longer
3. Pour the mixture into a punch bowl
4. Add the ginger ale and cava* and mix well
*You may substitute extra-dry Champagne for the cava