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President’s Message

Dear Friends,

Spring in Southern California is one of the most beautiful times of the year. It is a time of renewal and can provide hope to many. This past month we celebrated Easter, one of the most important holy days of the Christian faith. Easter celebrates hope and salvation and provides the ultimate example of God’s love for us. The YMCA was founded in faith in 1844 and has since grown to become a symbol of hope for all – regardless of creed. I hope you enjoyed this special time on Easter Sunday. May you and your family enjoy all the blessings this season brings.

March was also Women’s History Month, and we celebrated the amazing women in the YMCA including our Anaheim Family YMCA. We are a better organization because of all the women leaders who have strengthened the Y movement over the years. Whether it was last week, or over 100 years ago, women have played influential roles in our progress as an impactful community entity. Ellen Brown was the first female YMCA employee in 1886. She taught a night class at the Y that grew so rapidly, it eventually became a whole department! Violet P. Henry became the first Black woman to be named to a top management position at the Y’s national office. She led numerous national and international commissions and committees that worked for the rights of women and people with multicultural backgrounds.

Today, we have the honor of having the first woman to serve as CEO for the YMCA of the USA, Suzanne McCormick. A nonprofit executive with 30 years of leadership experience at the national and local levels, Forbes named Suzanne to its 50 Over 50 List in the Impact category in 2023. Our women leaders, staff, volunteers, and community members are the pillars of the YMCA movement and the Anaheim Family YMCA. Thank you to all of you for your tremendous dedication to our mission.

Lastly, I want to take this opportunity to share progress on our Annual Support Campaign: our We Build People Campaign has a goal of $500,000, and the Anaheim Family YMCA remains committed to ensuring that we grow in health and well-being. To date we have raised $140,000 and our recent 5th Gala honoring Paul Kott also raised over $250,000 to support the YMCA’s mission impact. We are honored to serve over 25,000 people annually across the region. This also means there is an increased need for a variety of impactful services ranging from programs that alleviate isolation for teens like youth sports, to drowning prevention, to providing fresh food to youth who need it the most – that’s just a few of the many initiatives we oversee. We rely on your generosity to be able to meet the ongoing needs of those we serve. I know together we will reach our goal by June 30th this year!

Please know that 100% of your contributions go back into our Anaheim community. The Y is FOR ALL.


Brent Finlay

President and CEO



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