Bresee is proud of the thousands of alumni who have gone through our program and continued to become character-driven, creative, college-educated individuals who serve their community.

Forty percent of Bresee’s 40 staff members are Bresee alumni who returned to continue Bresee’s track record of empowering the most at-risk and low-income youth in Los Angeles to achieve their full potential.

 Cesar, who came to Bresee in the 90′s for a free karate class and now owns and operates his own karate studio and offers his program for free to Bresee students.
 Pedro, who learned to tell his story and make films in Bresee’s media training program and is now Bresee’s Outreach Coordinator.
 Andy, who was sent to Bresee’s first time offenders program but is now a graduate of UCLA and co-founded a local nonprofitpromoting cycling in the community.
Roger, who was referred to Bresee from the probation department after stealing a TV and recently served as an assistant to assemblyman Mike Davis.
Alumni Profiles

Character-driven, creative, college-educated Bresee Foundation alumni in the community…

Kathy Henao,
2004

“The most important thing that happened to me wile having a relationship with Bresee was being awarded a four year scholarship to go to college. My parents weren’t able to afford to pay for me to go and if it wasn’t for Bresee I wouldn’t have gone to college”
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Chheav Em,
1999

“Because of the staff and the programs I was able to see more. I felt like I wanted to come back to help kids see more than what they are surrounded with everyday.”
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Jonathan Park,
1998

“People see Bresee and they see the academic portion where they help you do homework but I think it grew my artistic side because I’m an artist and musician. I remember they had a hip hop program and that sparked my interest when I was younger.”
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Linda Desenclos,
1997

“I came back to do covenant. Covenant was special. It it giving back; paying it forward. Investing in how people invested in me when I was young.”
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Cesar Ramirez,
1995

“The people that make it in life look around for the things they want. If they can’t find it, they create it; they make it happen. Those are the people that make it in life. That’s what Bresee taught me.”
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Greg Monterosa,
1992

“I credit Bresee as the first place that got me interested in computer work and that’s the sector I am in now!”
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Perla Aragon,
1989

“The most valuable thing I got out of the program was having the opportunity to build community.”
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Ron Ford,
1986

“My mission is still the same, make sure that 3 out of 10 get into college, out of the neighborhood, come back and they do the same. Make a change in this neighborhood; in the community. That’s what Bresee put in me.”
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Andy Rodriguez

“My mom who raised a family of 5 as a single mother struggled to make ends meet…Compounded by the lack of a father figure, my heart grew cold. I had no sense of direction, no sense of hope… I began looking elsewhere to find happiness and a sense of direction. I began using drugs to get away and looking for ways to get the things I wanted. I stole anything that I wanted… I knew one day I would get caught for living this lifestyle. And indeed I did… I got referred to Bresee Foundation where my perspective on life changed. There I took anger management classes, met new people and met weekly with my counselor Rene Martinez who helped me to look at life differently—although at the time I did not seem to care about any word he said. Eventually, his positivity seeped into the cold heart of mine… Bresee gave me this sense of accomplishment—something I had never really felt before. And I liked it. I was 19 at the time when I began to go to community college. From time to time I would pay a visit to Rene to catch up on life. Then one day he gave me good news, a job opportunity at Bresee. I took the job he had offered me and began working with first-time and repeat offenders, opening the first community service program at Bresee Foundation. This was my first real job I had ever had in my life. These years were tough for me but in a good way. I worked part-time at Bresee, went full-time at Los Angeles City College and eventually graduated from there and transferred to UCLA. With the help of Bresee and their scholarship opportunity I was able to finally walk on stage—something unimaginable during my younger days. I felt proud when I heard my name called. Without Bresee’s financial and emotional help I never would have gotten this far, and for this I thank them.”
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Olga Melchor

“Thanks to Bresee I’m the first one in my family to graduate from middle school, and the first one in my family to graduate from high school. And now, I’m proud to say, I’m a Bresee scholarship recipient in my first year at Cal State Los Angeles. This semester I’m studying English, communications, and astronomy, but my ultimate goal is to be an art teacher and teach at one of the schools in my community to give back to the next generation. I’m not going to lie. Financially, it has been tough at my house lately. My dad who was a waiter for 28 years at the same restaurant, was laid off in January of this year. He is still looking for work. My mom cleans and does maintenance at a spas. And even though I’m living at home, college is expensive. There is no way I could attend Cal State LA without the help of the Bresee Scholarship. So thank you to everyone for supporting students like me. I promise I’ll make you proud!”
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