Slide Join Us Thursday, April 15, 2021 VIRTUAL GALA

Raise Your Glass and “Cheers to Equity”

The pressures of this last year are exposing some of the deepest cracks in our healthcare, safety, and financial institutions. Yet a light is finding its way through these fractures, and it is illuminating the inequalities these systems were founded on. It is bringing into focus a truth we can no longer ignore. We must rebuild our communities with equity as our priority.

During this past year, CCEE launched the Black, Indigenous, People of Color Economic Equity Initiative to reach the most vulnerable among us. And we are proud of our response. We are leveraging this as a chance to see our vision of a truly financially and economically literate California come to fruition.

This work could not be possible without the help of our incredible partners who are committed to bringing those who have been historically marginalized into the fold. And this important work deserves a moment of thankful acknowledgement.

Join us on April 15, 2021 as we honor the CCEE champions who advocate for BIPOC students to cultivate opportunities that will last for generations.

We will toast to both a job well done and accomplishments to come. It is time to “Cheers to Equity” with gusto and gratefulness. This is an event you will not want to miss!

2021 Honorees

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Excellence in Equity
California Association of African American Administrators and Superintendents (CAAASA)

accepted on behalf of Dr. Daryl Camp, San Lorenzo Unified School District Superintendent and CAAASA President

CAAASA is a group of educational leaders who are committed to identifying and addressing the critical issues in education through public policy relative to the status and performance of African-American students in California.

Learn more about CAAASA

The California Association of African-American Superintendents and Administrators (CAAASA), a group of educational leaders, is committed to identifying and addressing the critical issues in education through public policy relative to the status and performance of African-American students in California. Today, its membership consists of African-American school superintendents, assistant superintendents, directors, and administrators. CAAASA has a history of hosting Institutes, state meetings, state conferences, and many special events since its inception.

CAAASA has worked in partnership with the Association of California School Administrators (ACSA) by sponsoring events and programs that support increased student achievement and that proved to be successful in addressing the needs of African-American students. Under CAAASA’s leadership, the organization is working closely with new and proposed initiatives that impact the academic achievement of African American students including a most successful and recently sponsored statewide conference in Sacramento, “Education is a Civil Right.”

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Excellence in Leadership
Sharon Lechter
Author and Financial Educator

Sharon is a global expert on the topics of financial education and entrepreneurship. She co-authored the international bestseller, Rich Dad Poor Dad, and is a life-long education advocate.

Learn more about Sharon

Sharon Lechter is an entrepreneur, author, philanthropist, international speaker,  Chartered Global Management Accountant and, most importantly, a mother and grandmother.  With a 35 year career as a licensed CPA and a life-long education advocate, she is the founder and CEO of Pay Your Family First, a financial education organization. 

Regarded as a global expert on financial literacy, Sharon has served as a national spokeswoman and Presidential Adviser on the topic. In 1997 Sharon co-authored the international bestseller Rich Dad Poor Dad, and has released 14 other books in the Rich Dad series. Sharon is recognized globally as an expert on the topics of financial education and entrepreneurship.

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Excellence in Teaching
Karen Clark Yamamoto
Teacher, Anaheim Union High School District

For the past 22-years, Karen has been a teacher at Western High School in Anaheim. She has taught AP Human Geography, Economics, Government, and United States History, and currently serves as the Social Science Department Chair.

Learn more about Karen

Karen Clark Yamamoto has been teaching high school Social Studies since 1997. She has taught AP Human Geography, Economics, Government, and United States History in the past 22 years at Western High School in Anaheim . She is currently teaching AP Human Geography and Economics and serves as the Social Science Department Chair at her school.

Karen earned a BA in History and Religious Studies from the University of California, Santa Barbara in 1995. She completed her teaching credential in 1997, earned an MA in Education: Curriculum and Instruction in 2004, and an MA in Education: Administration in 2012 from Concordia University, Irvine.  

Karen has taught Economics for the past 11 years. She attended the 2019 California High School Economics Teacher Certification Program sponsored by the California Council on Economic Education (CCEE) and the California Association of School Economics Teachers (CASET). 

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Excellence in Corporate Leadership
Bank of America

accepted of behalf of Raul Anaya, President of of Business Banking

Bank of America is helping build thriving communities by addressing issues fundamental to economic health and sustainability. They are advancing economic mobility by addressing issues related to workforce development and education, community development and basic needs. As a financial institution, they respond in two ways — by helping to address the immediate need, as well as funding innovative longer term solutions for economic self-sufficiency. 

Learn more about Bank of America

Bank of America is helping build thriving communities by addressing issues fundamental to economic health and sustainability. They are advancing economic mobility by addressing issues related to workforce development and education, community development and basic needs. As a financial institution, they respond in two ways — by helping to address the immediate need, as well as funding innovative longer term solutions for economic self-sufficiency. 

2021 CCEE Gala Co-Chairs

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Keith Drake
Senior VP and Regional Manager, Torrey Pines Bank
Secretary, California Council on Economic Education Board of Directors
Learn more about Keith

Keith Drake is senior director, commercial banking, for Torrey Pines Bank, where he leads the downtown Los Angeles market sales and operations team. He has earned numerous awards for his community involvement. He received the 2017 Lincoln Award for Ethical Leadership from Claremont Lincoln University. He is a board member for the Los Angeles Urban League, Boys and Girls Clubs of Metro Los Angeles, and the California African American Museum. Mr. Drake is also past chairman of the Los Angeles Greater African American Chamber of Commerce Foundation, past board member for Challenger Boys and Girls Club, and past advisor to Vermont Village Community Development Corporation.

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Ryan Mendoza
VP Underwriting Manager, JPMorgan Chase
California Council on Economic Education Board of Directors
Learn more about Ryan

Mr. Mendoza holds over 20 years’ experience in the affordable housing industry. He has built and financed nearly a billion in new construction and rehabilitation with JPMorgan Chase, where his geographical coverage stretches from Seattle to San Diego and the Nevada and Arizona markets. Ryan remains an active participant in civic and community life. He served as the Board Treasurer for Human Services Association, the largest Head Start and Early Head Start organization in southeast Los Angeles and as the Co-Chair of California PRIDE, which is JPMorgan’s LGBT Business Resource Group. Other Board experience includes serving as Vice Chair of the AIDS Service Center in Pasadena and as the Treasurer of HONOR PAC, the nation’s first political action committee dedicated to increasing the number of Latino LGBT elected officials. Ryan has also focused on advancing local, neighborhood planning issues. He was elected to the Los Angeles Community Redevelopment Agency’s Adelante Eastside board in 2004, and he also served as a founding board member of the Lincoln Heights Historic Preservation Overlay Zone.

Our Mission

For over six decades, CCEE’s mission has been to improve California’s economic future by teaching economics and financial literacy, especially in underserved communities.

Our Work

Slide Black, Indigenous, People of Color Economic Equity Initiative
The BIPOC equity initiative builds upon CCEE’s existing mission with a renewed focus specifically on combating racial economic inequality. Through robust economic education, the Initiative’s actions will result in increased economic mobility and resilience for BIPOC students throughout California. CCEE is the only nonprofit in California that provides California’s students’ with enriching economic and personal finance education through hands-on programming such as our local and national student contests. Student Programs Teacher Programs Investing in teachers and supporting their instruction yields the largest returns in the mission to create an economically and financially literate California. Every single teacher trained by CCEE equals 100 students educated every year. Community Programs By teaming up with various community partners, such as the Los Angeles Unified School District, CCEE is able to deliver impactful economic and personal finance programming to California’s families.

Thank you to our 2021 Cheers to Equity Gala Sponsors and Supporters

A special thank you to

John and Patty Nickoll

Barry and Carole Patmore

James Parks

Al Keahi