With a bid of $15,000, Andrew “A.J.” Stivers, of Shelbyville, won the chance to “blow up bureaucracy” on Sunday.
Stivers joined a group of state and local officials during a ceremony in front of the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet building before the Capital Plaza Tower implosion and used a plunger detonator to ceremonially start the implosion.
Stiver’s $15,000 bid was the highest of 84 made over a five-day period on the auction website Ebay. The entirety of his donation will benefit First Lady Glenna Bevin’s foundation #WeAre KY! Inc., which supports statewide foster care and adoption initiatives.
Stivers operates Quality Care for Kids, a team of board-certified ophthalmologists, pediatricians and trained technicians that provides on-site routine vision and hearing exams to schools across Kentucky.
Asked about Stiver’s donation, Glenna Bevin said that she was never expecting the auction to reach $15,000 but that she was grateful for the generous bid.
The first lady said that she wasn’t acquainted with the Stivers family but that was pleased to make a connection with someone who’s also involved in helping children.
“They’re already doing great things,” she said.
In a news release, Gov. Bevin echoed the first lady’s comments, saying the donation will positively impact the lives of vulnerable children. Stivers, his wife, Michelle, and their children, Tucker and Olivia, attended the formal ceremony in front of the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet building.
According to the Kentucky Secretary of State’s Office, #WeAreKY!, Inc. was founded on April 20, 2016, as “Be Their Difference, Inc.” Its name was changed to #WeAreKY!, Inc. in May 2017.
The foundation has no paid staff, and the Executive Branch Ethics Commission said it is not a conflict for Bevin to raise money for charity this way.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.