Irvine Forward Foundation Established to Support Education and Career Readiness Programs

Wednesday, February 23, 2022

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The Irvine Forward Foundation (IFF), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, has been established to support educational achievement through scholarships, career readiness, and community engagement.

Scholarships supported by IFF:

  • Lt. Col. Thomas U. Wall Scholarship — Funding for the scholarship began with a $20,000 endowment from the Thomas U. Wall trust in 1992. The funds were placed in an account at a financial institution and the interest from the funds determines the number of scholarships to be awarded on an annual basis. Eligible students must be a U.S. resident, U.S. military veteran, or child or grandchild of a U.S. Military veteran who is pursuing a career path in science, business or law enforcement at Irvine Valley College, and has a demonstrated financial need, and a high school or college 2.5 or higher G.P.A.
  • John Colvin Scholarship — John Greg Colvin was an active member of the Greater Irvine Chamber, including serving a term as chair of the organization’s Business Attraction and Retention Committee. Following his death in 2014 while training for an Ironman Triathlon, his wife Joan Colvin established the scholarship in his name. Eligible students must be enrolled in a four-year degree program at an accredited university or college in Southern California with a G.P.A. of 3.0 or higher, and have a demonstrated commitment to a fitness lifestyle with an objective of contributing to the health and economic vitality of Irvine and California.

Greater Irvine Chamber career readiness programs supported by IFF include :

  • Career Edge – an award-winning soft-skills workshop series for college students to better prepare them for the workplace including practical critical thinking & problem solving, business communications and business etiquette & workplace behaviors. 
  • Financial Literacy Project –financial literacy workshops for Irvine Unified School District (IUSD) 7th and 8th graders. The first session introduces students to the foundations of finances, the second session introduces them to the stock market game, and the third session awards their performance through the gamification module.

IFF is also focused on supporting Greater Irvine Chamber programs that help manage or mitigate business challenges and issues, support business development, provide data and research for business leaders, and encourage startup enterprises. They include the award-winning Irvine Business Outreach program designed to conduct primary research on the most pressing needs facing local businesses and to share valuable resources with business leaders.

IFF is led by a Board of Directors:

  • Executive Director - Jessica Welch, senior vice president, Greater Irvine Chamber
  • Chair - Bruce Greenberg, Owner, Bruce Greenberg Consulting
  • Incoming Chair - Lisa Thomas, Founder & Principal, Main Street Marketing Partners
  • Treasurer - Brian Andersen, Owner, Telecomprehensive Solutions
  • General Counsel - Andy Bernstein, Shareholder, Jackson Tidus
  • Secretary - Bryan Starr, President and CEO, Greater Irvine Chamber
  • Brian Dozer, Superintendent, Coastline ROP
  • Lanae OShields, Public Affairs Manager, SoCalGas

Donations to Irvine Forward Foundation are tax-deductible (Tax ID: 20-4160663).

For more information and to support Irvine Forward Foundation, contact Jessica Welch.

Category: Education Excellence, Greater Irvine Chamber, Nonprofit