Young Folks With Disabilities Strut Their Stuff at Sparkling Prom

“Evening of Dreams” prom
Photos courtesy Kyle Mickelson
Residents from all over the Greater Pasadena area attend Capernaum’s largest annual event of the year, the “Evening of Dreams” prom, including Rosella Rutt (front row, from left), Chloe Smith, Zachary West, Stephanie Lough and Erin Loo. Middle row: Amy Nielsen, Mary Fischer, Jonathan Klish, Carter Newman-Milic and Shirley Dostal. Back: Ben Sanders.

To most average high schoolers, prom is the culmination of the school year, a time to make memories and cherish crushes. But for anyone living with an intellectual or developmental disability, that time-honored tradition might never come, with the logistics of such celebrations growing more complicated by the year. Continue reading “Young Folks With Disabilities Strut Their Stuff at Sparkling Prom”

PCC Foundation Expands Fundraising and College’s Scope

Executive Director Bobbi Abram and Jack Scott
OUTLOOK photo
Pasadena City College Foundation Executive Director Bobbi Abram and Jack Scott, former PCC president, have successfully led the ambitious “Impact Campaign,” raising $16 million for four initiatives: scholarships, career and technical education, arts and athletics. Scott has chaired the five-year campaign whose initial goal was $10 million.

With the Pasadena City College Foundation on the cusp of completing an ambitious, multimillion-dollar fundraising campaign, the San Gabriel Valley’s largest community college is assured of continuing to impact lives and serve as graduates’ bridge to an evolving economy for many generations to come, foundation members said recently.
With an initial goal of $10 million when it kicked off in late 2014, PCC’s first-of-its-kind “Impact Campaign” has now raised about $16 million, which will be dedicated to four major initiatives to improve outcomes for its 29,000 students: scholarships, career and technical education, arts and athletics.
The campaign’s success will improve programs not supported by the college’s operational budget, like the resurfacing of the athletic field, engaging internship opportunities for continuing students or strengthening chances at employment for those graduating. Continue reading “PCC Foundation Expands Fundraising and College’s Scope”

ChapCare Zones In on Local Health Care for Uninsured

ChapCare
OUTLOOK photo
ChapCare CEO Margaret Martinez, L.A. County Supervisor Kathryn Barger and Kaiser Permanente Southern California President Julie Miller-Phipps celebrated ChapCare’s new Pasadena location, which will serve low-income residents.

“Location, location, location.”
A real estate tycoon might typically utter that phrase, but this time it was Margaret Martinez, CEO of Community Health Alliance of Pasadena, or ChapCare, on the opening of its new, cutting-edge health-care facility in the heart of northwest Pasadena. Continue reading “ChapCare Zones In on Local Health Care for Uninsured”

Restaurateurs Nourish Ties to Nonprofits, Flavor City’s Culture

Pasadena’s restaurateurs
Photo by Staci Moraza / OUTLOOK
Pasadena’s restaurateurs, many of whom have been operating local eateries for decades, include (front row, from left) Armando Ramirez, Abel Ramirez, Gale Kohl, R-lene Mijares de Lang and Pete Gallanis. Back: Michael Hawkins, Bob Harrison, John Bicos, Michael Osborn, Rick Liss, Robin Salzer and Gregg Smith.

It may have once been known as an idyllic suburban hub surrounded by orange groves and craftsman cottages, but Pasadena’s urban center has morphed in recent decades into a nexus of leisure, entertainment and gastronomy comparable to that of any metropolitan city, with offerings as diverse as the people who inhabit the City of Roses. Continue reading “Restaurateurs Nourish Ties to Nonprofits, Flavor City’s Culture”

Creativity Takes Shape at Armory Center for the Arts

Photo courtesy Armory Center for the Arts Armory Center for the Arts instructor Andrew Currey and John Muir High School senior Jaylin Jenkins have worked together to improve Jenkins’ portfolio so he could apply to schools, including Otis College of Art and Design, where he’s been accepted.
Photo courtesy Armory Center for the Arts
Armory Center for the Arts instructor Andrew Currey and John Muir High School senior Jaylin Jenkins have worked together to improve Jenkins’ portfolio so he could apply to schools, including Otis College of Art and Design, where he’s been accepted.

Like many young artists these days, Jaylin Jenkins, 18, started out loving anime. Heavily influenced by the Japanese style of animation, he knew at just 5 that he loved to draw, and he recalls trying to mimic the characters in graphic novels, comics and movies.
Later on, at John Muir High School, Jenkins realized he really might have a shot to attend art school. As a freshman, he had won the Pasadena Unified School District’s annual “No Boundaries” student art exhibit, and Muir’s AP art instructor urged him on. Continue reading “Creativity Takes Shape at Armory Center for the Arts”

To Protect and Preserve: One Arroyo Foundation Boosts Local Treasure

The recently formed One Arroyo Foundation is fundraising to protect and enhance trails within the historic Arroyo Seco, uniting some 22 miles of trails within its 900 acres.
Photo courtesy One Arroyo Foundation
The recently formed One Arroyo Foundation is fundraising to protect and enhance trails within the historic Arroyo Seco, uniting some 22 miles of trails within its 900 acres.

It’s been a great winter for Pasadena’s backyard wilderness, the Arroyo Seco. Steeped in lush green, the local trails crisscrossing the tributary basin emit scents of sage and lilac, and, if you keep climbing, you’ll find a panorama of soft buckwheat hills, interspersed with California’s deep orange poppies and mustard brush, a brook bubbling below. You’ll see hawks overhead, darting lizards and, if you’re lucky, a red and black coast mountain king snake sunning itself on a nearby rock. Continue reading “To Protect and Preserve: One Arroyo Foundation Boosts Local Treasure”

Pacific Clinics’ Head Start Combines Education, Mental Health Services

OUTLOOK file photo Pacific Clinics’ President/CEO Jim Balla and TV news anchor and mental health advocate Ellen Leyva are pictured at last year’s fundraising event for the nonprofit, the Champions of Mental Health annual gala.
OUTLOOK file photo
Pacific Clinics’ President/CEO Jim Balla and TV news anchor and mental health advocate Ellen Leyva are pictured at last year’s fundraising event for the nonprofit, the Champions of Mental Health annual gala.

When Rosa first came to Pacific Clinics for help, the young mother was at the lowest point in her life. A victim of domestic violence, she had finally made a terrifying decision: seek safety for herself and her baby boy, and, in doing so, leave financial security and a home behind.
She felt broken and depressed, and while living at a shelter, Rosa feared for her son’s future. When a contentious custody battle ensued, it tested every fiber of her self-worth and drove her to the brink when she temporarily lost her right to live with Jacob. Worse yet, the young boy had been traumatized, exhibiting behavioral and communication issues by the time she got him back. Continue reading “Pacific Clinics’ Head Start Combines Education, Mental Health Services”

Board Chair’s Loyalty to Huntington Hospital Is Professional, Personal

Photo courtesy Christopher Grisanti Huntington Hospital Board of Directors Chair Jaynie Studenmund and Dr. Lori Morgan, the hospital’s president/CEO, attend a Veterans Day flag-raising ceremony. As Gold Star parents, Studenmund and her husband, Woody, are committed to supporting those who have served in the armed forces.
Photo courtesy Christopher Grisanti
Huntington Hospital Board of Directors Chair Jaynie Studenmund and Dr. Lori Morgan, the hospital’s president/CEO, attend a Veterans Day flag-raising ceremony. As Gold Star parents, Studenmund and her husband, Woody, are committed to supporting those who have served in the armed forces.

She’s been dedicated to volunteerism at Huntington Hospital for 30 years, but Jaynie Studenmund recently saw the hospital through a more personal lens when her husband was admitted there three times in less than a month.
It’s an experience no one hopes to have, and thankfully, husband Woody is on the mend, but it’s given Studenmund a newfound respect for the institution, where she’s been a board member since 1998 and a “lifetime” trustee since 2011.
The experience helped bring home a message she’s long heard: Huntington’s medical staff really does make all the difference.
“An unintended consequence of spending so much time here has been seeing firsthand that our [E.R.] docs and nurses are pretty amazing. Our nurses have a level of dedication, warmth and expertise that is very heartwarming,” she said, noting that the medical staff gave her husband around-the-clock care, passing along vital information amid seamless shift changes. “I’m not an expert or a physician, and when you rely on the hospital to do its job … suddenly this is where rubber meets the road. Continue reading “Board Chair’s Loyalty to Huntington Hospital Is Professional, Personal”

Planned Parenthood Teaches Students to School Peers on Health Advocacy

OUTLOOK photo A group of Planned Parenthood Pasadena and San Gabriel Valley peer advocates discuss updates on their school action project.
OUTLOOK photo
A group of Planned Parenthood Pasadena and San Gabriel Valley peer advocates discuss updates on their school action project.

Even bipartisan groups agree that health care is complicated, but a contingent of local students is keeping it simple at a grass-roots level, taking charge of their own care through a peer-to-peer education program at Planned Parenthood Pasadena and San Gabriel Valley.
Now in its fourth year, the nonprofit organization’s Peer Advocacy Program has reached youth across 16 school districts in the valley, teaching students how to become their own best advocates when it comes to access to reproductive health care. So far, 38 students have completed the program, but those kids have, in turn, touched a host of others at their schools by creating public service announcements and sharing brochures about the broad range of free services available at PPPSGV.
The program is growing quickly, with 25 students — the largest group ever — participating this year. Continue reading “Planned Parenthood Teaches Students to School Peers on Health Advocacy”

Local Resident Instrumental in Advancing Philharmonic’s Diverse Goals

Photos courtesy Mathew Imaging  L.A. Philharmonic Executive Director Gail Samuel and Music and Artistic Director Gustavo Dudamel
Photos courtesy Mathew Imaging
L.A. Philharmonic Executive Director Gail Samuel and Music and Artistic Director Gustavo Dudamel

Gail Samuel has always loved being part of an orchestra. There was something poetic about all the small parts, each instrument and every chord, coming together and building the swell of the ensemble’s greater, symphonic whole.
But Samuel, an accomplished violinist and the daughter of two public high school music teachers, also knew that becoming a performing artist wasn’t her final goal: “I didn’t like spending that much time alone in a practice room,” the Pasadena resident recalled.
Now, however, in her fourth year as executive director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association, Samuel has found her stride in pushing forward the greater whole of one of the world’s premier orchestras. Her tenure at the L.A. Continue reading “Local Resident Instrumental in Advancing Philharmonic’s Diverse Goals”