Photos by Ann Chatillon
Athletes First, a Newport Beach sports agency representing more than 100 athletes and coaches, partnered with Orangewood Children’s Foundation and its PALS auxiliary again this year hosting its annual two-day fundraiser, “The Athletes First Classic.”
The gala event was held at the St. Regis Resort with a golf tournament the next day. More than 60 athletes attended the weekend events, including Hall of Fame players such as Eric Dickerson, USC alums and current players including Clay Matthews (Green Bay Packers), Mark Sanchez (N.Y. Jets) and Matt Leinart (Houston Texans), and many young players represented by Athletes First.
Almost 900 people gathered at the gala on Friday night for a dinner program that included a testimonial by former foster youth Jorge Cardenas, who was removed from his family when he was in the 4th grade. Thanks to support from Orangewood, his Orangewood mentor, board member and Gala honoree, Jeff Roos, and Orangewood scholarships, today Jorge is a senior at Cal. State Fullerton and will be graduating in a few months.
The gala and golf event raised approximately $400,000 for Orangewood Children’s Foundation’s scholarship program for former foster teens in Orange County.
For more information, visit www.orangewoodfoundation.org.