Martinez Business Beat, Dec. 26, 2018

Allstate Foundation Awards Grant To Las Juntas, Other Schools

Local Allstate agency owners recently joined over 200 Allstate volunteers across seven states to secure $193,000 in “Allstate Foundation Helping Hands” grants to benefit 21 schools and youth groups, including $27,000 in grants for Martinez Unified School District’s Las Juntas Elementary School; Roy Cloud Elementary School in the Redwood City School District and Tyrrell Elementary School in the Hayward Unified School District.

Through their volunteer efforts, local Allstate agency owners secured a $6,000 Allstate Foundation Helping Hands grant to benefit Las Juntas Elementary School, a $7,000 Allstate Foundation Helping Hands grant to benefit Roy Cloud Elementary and a $14,000 Allstate Foundation Helping Hands grant to benefit Tyrrell Elementary School.

Allstate volunteers mobilized people in communities around the country to donate vital items such as backpacks, hand sanitizer, lined notebook paper, pencils, pens and other supplies to enhance students’ learning by ensuring they started school with the tools they need to succeed.

“As small business owners and community members we see firsthand the challenges schools, teachers and students alike often face in securing critical supplies that ensure academic achievement,” said Darrell Lee, Allstate agency owner in Castro Valley.

“Giving back is core to who we are, which is why we’re proud to volunteer and provide our local educators and students the resources needed to excel,” Lee said.

The school supply drive allowed more educators to focus on preparing for the academic year instead of worrying about students’ critical supply needs. Each year, public school teachers spend nearly $500 of their own wages on supplies for their classrooms, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.

The schools will use the grant to support both pupils and students.

They are among thousands of organizations this year to receive Allstate Foundation Helping Hands grants secured by Allstate agency owners and financial specialists for their volunteer efforts.

The grants support organizations addressing domestic violence, youth empowerment, disaster preparedness, hunger and other causes.

Good Starts Young is a signature initiative of The Allstate Foundation to prepare today’s youth for the future and build our next generation of leaders.

In 2017, Allstate Foundation-supported programs provided more than 2 million youth with the guidance and resources they need to master critical social and emotional learning (SEL) competencies – critical thinking, collaboration, cultural awareness and communication – so they can take action.

Participating local Allstate agency owner volunteers include two from Martinez, Alissa Gutierres and Nicolas Rojas.

Others are Laura Aguilera, San Jose; Amanda Beeson, San Ramon; Jennifer Bounour, Pleasanton; James Carlson, Hayward; Todd Carlson, Hayward; Alice Chan, San Jose; Eddy Chan, San Mateo; Christopher Chen, Fremont; Abraham Chiu, Burlingame; Noel Garcia, San Francisco; Bruce Gekko, Castro Valley; Jose Guillermo, Benicia; Tony Huey, Union City; Mark Johnson, Walnut Creek; Darrell Lee, Castro Valley; John Leland, Daly City; Mark Malouf, Dublin; Robert McGlinchy, Pleasanton; Christen Scanlon, San Francisco; Dahlia Schonian, San Leandro; Matthew Shlicoff, Millbrae; Yashneil Singh, San Mateo; Kayla Timario, Pleasanton; Dylan Tran, San Jose; and Angelica Virola, San Leandro.

The Allstate Foundation works to help communities prosper, to inspire new generations of leaders, to break the cycle of domestic violence; to close gaps in the nonprofit leadership and to honor Allstate volunteers. Those interested may visit the web page

Want To Experience Sonoma Raceway? Drive ‘Laps For Charity’ In January

Those who have dreamed of tackling the Sonoma Raceway road course in their own cars may enjoy some high-speed thrills in the name of charity during the Sonoma chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities’s sixth annual Laps for Charity event Saturday, Jan. 12, 2019.

This once-a-year-opportunity lets participants take their vehicle for a few laps around the 12-turn road course for $150. The experience includes a pre-lap classroom safety briefing with professional drivers, three lead-follow laps around the 2.52-mile circuit, a picture of your car on track, plus a “hot lap” in the instructor’s car.

Proceeds benefit Sonoma County youth organizations through Speedway Children’s Charities (SCC). The charitable arm of Sonoma Raceway, SCC has distributed more than $6.4 million to Sonoma County youth groups since 2001.

A limited number of spots are available between 2:30 p.m. and 4 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 12. Participants must be at least 18 years old and passengers are not permitted.

All cars must have shoulder strap seat belt restraints, mufflers and pass a basic technical inspection.

To learn more about the event and register for a spot, visit or contact Cheri Plattner at

Business News Welcome At The Martinez News-Gazette

The Martinez News-Gazette’s weekly Martinez Business Beat column is an opportunity for local businesses and companies to tell our readers about business-oriented news, such as moves, grand openings, awards, promotion of employees, staff changes and changes in goods and services.

Submissions will be edited for length and content. Please include who, what, when, where, why and how, preferably in the body of an email; and please provide contact information.

The deadline is 3 p.m. Friday for news items to appear in the following Wednesday edition. Please e-mail news releases and accompanying high-resolution photographs and logos to and put “Attn: Business Beat” in the subject line along with the name of your business.

The Martinez News-Gazette also appreciates area companies’ advertising patronage. For advertising services, please call 925-228-6400.

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