August is “Black Philanthropy Month” and the chairman of the Greater Los Angeles African American Chamber of Commerce (GLAAACC) Gene Hale is celebrating by supporting Educational Student Tours (EST), a nonprofit which helps students of color tour Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), as well as get into college.
Yasmin Delahoussaye, co-founder of EST, appreciates Hale’s donations to the organization, which allowed 10 foster students to tour Johnson C. Smith University, a small, liberal arts university in Charlotte, N.C.
“This year, he has contributed again to make sure that we can continue to support foster and low-income students,” Delahoussaye said in an email. “He has helped five of our students to meet their COVID-19 challenges such as help with food, utilities, groceries, and rent.”
Hale has consistantly supported Black youth and their education, according to Delahoussaye.
“He is the former chair of the Los Angeles Southwest College Foundation and supported students at Southwest College for years with donations raised on their behalf. He is also heavily involved in the scholarship program for GLAAACC,” Delahoussaye said. “They give scholarships at schools such as Crenshaw, Dorsey, and Jordan High School. Their scholarship recipients are all going to college.”
Hale has donated over $1 million to different philanthropic charities.
Hale was introduced to EST when he served as the chairman of the LA Southwest College Foundation.
“The president of the foundation at the time told me about it, and I was especially intrigued because I knew that it could really help assist foster youth,” Hale said. “When foster youth age out of the system, many of them have nowhere to go and this would provide them with an opportunity to explore the country, be exposed, and hopefully find a good fit and a good place for them to land.”
Hale is not just the chairman of GLAAACC, but also the founder of the GLAAACC Education Fund & Foundation which raises scholarships for inner-city youth, so they are able to attend college.
Aside from supporting Black youth in South LA, Hale’s duties as chairman are the focus and support of Black businesses, especially during the current COVID-19 pandemic.
“Throughout the decades, GLAAACC has remained devoted to the idea that a strong business community is the backbone of a strong city,” Hale states on the organization’s site. “Along with a network of business members, civic leaders, various partnerships, and dedicated volunteers, the Chamber has worked to promote a shared vision for this region’s continued growth.”