LA’s BEST Alumni Baron Davis, Molly Simms, Eric Gurna, and Jenna Brill Binder at the unWINEdLA event.

LA’s BEST Alumni Baron Davis, Molly Simms, Eric Gurna, and Jenna Brill Binder at the unWINEdLA event.


LA’s BEST plays a vital role in the lives of more than 25,000 elementary school students who come from neighborhoods with the fewest resources and the greatest needs across Los Angeles.


LA’s BEST Afterschool Enrichment Program provides a safe and supervised afterschool education, enrichment and recreation program for children ages five to 12 in Los Angeles.


In 2018, 25,000 students received afterschool homework support, nutritious meals, and enrichment and recreational activities, all at no cost to families. With additional support from Mayor Garcetti, 7,000 students participated in the Summer Learning Program.



Eric Gurna

President & CEO

Amber Martinez

Vice President of Development

Debe Loxton

Chief Operating Officer


Chair: Christopher D. Dusseault

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP

Adam Deromedi


Alberto Diaz

United Airlines

Trudi Ferguson

USC, Marshall School of Business

Neal Fraser

Redbird | Vibiana | Fritzi Coop

Jeff Goad


Ruben Gonzalez

Gonzalez Strategic Affairs Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce

Eric Gurna


Gerald L. Katell

Katell Productions, LLC

Katell Properties, LLC

Lyndal Larkin

Heather Lord

Capital Group

Jawaad Malik

Southern California Gas Company

Damian Mazzotta

Zero Gravity

Samira Poulos

The Honorable Richard J. Riordan

The Riordan Foundation

June Sale

Teresa Samaniego


Dean Schramm

The Schramm Group

Cameron Strang

Marvin J. Suomi

KUD International, LLC

David Travers


Vice Chair: Mary Odell

The Riordan Foundation

CFO: Robert L. Wicke

Deloitte Consulting


Throughout the year, LA’s BEST hosts several unique events in collaboration with our Board Members, corporate partners and community of supporters. Locally Grown in the spring is hosted by Chef Neal Fraser and Amy Knoll Fraser in Redbird’s beautiful garden. unWINEdLA in the late spring is a chic wine tasting event organized by the BEST Friends network attended by 500+ young professionals.

Our 30th Anniversary Our City, Our Kids gala (11.29.18), honoring Los Angeles Football Club, will be attended by 300+ philanthropists. We also organize evening and weekend gatherings, often around volunteer opportunities for people to network and experience our impact. Check out for upcoming events. Please contact to learn more and get involved.


LA’s BEST offers rewarding opportunities to donate your time, talent and resources. Your participation helps children ages five to 12 feel supported and special. You can volunteer with students one-time or more frequently, by yourself, with a group of friends or with your company. We offer corporations meaningful and engaging opportunities to build camaraderie and connect with LA’s BEST kids. You can read to children, help them with their homework, teach them a new skill and/or help foster sportsmanship on and off the field. We also invite you to join a fun and well-organized Event Committee to throw an event to help raise awareness and funds for LA’s BEST. Please contact Navneet.Kaur@ to sign-up.


LA’s BEST offers many opportunities for your company to partner with us to genuinely implement Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives, engage employees and “give back.” We invite companies — big and small — to support LA’s BEST in ways that are aligned with your mission and our shared goals. You can sponsor a fundraising event or a major event with our students and families, like the Family Health Festival or Celebrate Science Fair, or fund a field trip or a program such as CoderTime, Young Authors or sports. We can partner with you to launch an employee engagement program or collaborate on a social-media campaign. There are lots of ways to highlight your company’s generosity of time, spirit and resources. We welcome the opportunity to discuss stock donations and planned giving with you. To discuss donation and partnership opportunities, please contact


• Deliver more high-quality, innovative, enriching and recreational experiences to children across Los Angeles

• Become the nation’s first large scale trauma-resilient informed afterschool enrichment program by investing in our staff’s ongoing development, and collaborating with LAUSD and other partners to increase our capacity to connect children and families with mental health resources.

• Increase advocacy efforts through engagement in system and policy change aimed at addressing inequity in economically-distressed communities

• Enhance the program staff training and development systems to equip program staff with vital, transferable 21st Century skills

Return to Index

For reprint and licensing requests for this article, CLICK HERE.