The Maurice & Sally Goller


In 2020, our founders’ grandparents, Maurice and Sally Goller, celebrated their 75th wedding anniversary. At home and on travels with their children and grandchildren, they role-modeled the importance of family; the value of education – including travel and exploring other cultures; the power of meaningful, shared experiences; and lifting up others who are less fortunate.

To honor Maurice and Sally, Photo Start established the Explorer Scholarship Fund, which aims to raise $25,000 to strengthen and sustain our work educating the travelers, storytellers, and leaders of tomorrow.


Your contribution to the Explorer Scholarship Fund ensures students learn valuable professional and life skills while exploring and connecting with their communities. Donate by December 31, and you will receive exclusive access to our digital exhibit, Explorations, and inspirational student stories throughout the year.


Maurice and Sally value a well-rounded education, which includes exploring new places and cultures. $75 gives one week of photo walks to seven students!


Gives one week of new experiences and lessons plus one memory card each for a dozen students. Memory cards are important as they allow students to own and keep their work.


Gives one week of learning valuable professional, social, and leadership skills for an entire class (Typical class size is 20-24 students.)


Gives one student a full 24-week program and a memory card, ensuring a brighter future they can imagine, envision and create for themselves.

Together, let’s give our students a Photo Start to their happily ever after!

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Once upon a time…

It was a typical school day in April 1943. Sally was enjoying her lunch at Brooklyn’s Lincoln High School when a teacher, thought Sally was being too loud, so she reprimanded her by “forcing” her to eat lunch at the track team table. So much for a reprimand! There, Maurice introduced himself and welcomed Sally to the seat next to his. That weekend they went on their first date: a movie and stroll on the iconic Coney Island boardwalk for Nathan’s Famous hot dogs and french fries. They’ve been inseparable ever since.

Maurice and Sally Goller began life as husband and wife on October 20, 1945, at a small ceremony in Brooklyn. With Maurice, a medic and corporal in the U.S. Army on a weekend pass from Fort Dix, the newlyweds enjoyed a short but unforgettable honeymoon at the historic Hotel Tudor (now Westgate New York Grand Central). For a young couple from Brighton Beach, staying at an elegant Manhattan hotel was a big deal – and at $6.25/night, it was a also a great deal!

That weekend was the first of many adventures in travel for the Goller family. Over the years they commemorated most of their anniversaries with a trip, eventually including their children and grandchildren. They have visited an incredible 120 countries!

It was a family trip to South Africa in 2015 that inspired Abby to join her brother, David, in founding Photo Start. Her work in education and David’s experience as a photographer led them to Photo Start’s mission: Use photography to teach students the skills to thrive in any environment.

The Gollers honeymooned at what is now the Westgate New York Grand Central. This past summer, Westgate hosted the happy couple with a tour of the recently remodeled property and a toast with bubbly. They also offered a complimentary weekend stay for all future anniversaries!

A special digital exhibit by Photo Start students was created to honor the occasion as well. The exhibit, Explorations, is a tribute to the Goller legacy of learning through education, experiences and travel. A live exhibit is in the works to be hosted by Westgate Resorts across the United States!