Los Angeles Team Mentoring hosted its annual Soiree on Thursday, October 5th, 2023, at the Beverly Wilshire in Beverly Hills.

The foundation was celebrating their 31st year mentoring at-risk middle school youth while honoring the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA) and Entrepreneur, Mentor, Bestselling Author, Discovery’s Undercover Billionaire star Glenn Stearns. The annual Soiree is the organization’s signature fundraising event, which ensures hundreds of volunteer mentors are able to provide critical mentoring services to over 1,000 at-risk youth for an entire school year.

The black-tie gala was attended by Impact Award honoree Glenn Stearns & wife Mindy Stearns, Dr. Bassey Akpan manager of player wellness at NFLPA, former professional football player Marvel Smith, actor Kurt Caceres, and featuring an exclusive live performance and appearance by Jay Leno.

“Every year I grow increasingly prouder of the work we are doing at LATM, it is an honor to help 1000 at-risk youth weekly and without the aid of our incredible mentors, board of directors, and donors we wouldn’t see the same success. This event is our time to give back and thank everyone who has helped us on this journey and has continued to support LATM,” said Maria Melton, LATM’s Executive Director. "It was thrilling to honor the NFLPA and to thank them for the continual support of programs whose mission aligns with LATM’s. It is a powerful moment to come together and show our dedication for improving the lives of youth and communities through sport, team building, and mentorship.

“Glenn Stearns is an honoree who embodies LATM’s mission. His rags to riches story, paired with his strong commitment to mentoring others, resonated strongly with our students, board members and supporters. We were thrilled to honor him this year.”

This year’s Keystone & Presenting sponsors included Live Nation, Latham & Watkins, and TPG Real Estate/Kelvin and Hana Davis, Evoke Advisors, Jump Time, Kind Lending, Bank of America, and Keenan & Associates. Los Angeles magazine is the event’s media sponsor. In addition, there was a live and silent auction with exclusive items and experiences such as a private tour of Jay Leno’s garage, private lunch and mentoring session with Glenn Stearns, VIP Day at the Del Mar Races with Bo Derek, signed Kelly Slater surfboard, and many more.
All proceeds from Soiree will support Los Angeles Team Mentoring and their future endeavors.

For more information and to donate to Los Angeles Team Mentoring, click here.

About Los Angeles Team Mentoring

In 1992, LATM launched its first after-school mentoring program at Horace Mann Middle School, located in South Los Angeles. Its groundbreaking team-based mentoring model, developed by the Princeton Center for Leadership, was instituted to train, and encourage leadership, social emotional learning, and modify effects of gang activity, violence, poverty and high drop-out rates. LATM serves the second largest public school system in the United States and the program traditionally available to students across LAUSD middle school sites. This fall, the program will expand to include the San Diego School District.

Since its inception, the organization has provided over three million hours of service through mentoring youth in Los Angeles. The program focuses on the critical non-school hours – after-school, weekends and summers – to ensure students have safe and structured programming and access to trusted adult role models. Youth enroll in LATM’s program in 6th, 7th, and 8th grades. Although LATM does not provide tutoring, students in the program not only earn higher grades, but go on 4 years later to graduate from high school at a 22% higher rate (in spite of 29% of those same students coming from homes where neither parent has graduated from high school). In addition, 100% of LATM youth have increased self-esteem—giving them the critical foundation they need to dream big and succeed. LATM’s mentoring model includes both in-person (TeamWorks), and virtual programming (eWorks). Each includes a team of three mentors consisting of a teacher, a college student, and a community and/or business volunteer that utilize an activity-based curriculum enabling students to develop social emotional skills and resiliency.

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