Founder & Project Director
Jim is a writer.
Don Anderson Jr.
Co-Founder & Program Director
Don is an artist.
Cynthia recently graduated from California State University Dominguez Hills, with a BA in Liberal Studies. She is currently pursuing her multi-subject teaching credential also at Dominguez Hills. Cynthia directs testing and assessment, and guides our teaching staff. With nine years of experience teaching at Strive, she helps train new staff and supports their efforts in the classroom.
Guadalupe has received her associate degree in natural sciences, and is working on transferring to UCLA for her bachelor's in biology. She has worked as a tutor for the past two years with children from K-12 all over LA County and has seen first hand the need for places like Strive- a safe, healthy loving and structural facility where kids not only get help with their homework but also learn valuable life lessons.
"I feel honored to work for Strive"
Natalia graduated from Biola University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education. She also received a concentration for her degree in Intercultural Studies while she interned in Ecuador. There, she taught English to elementary and high school students, and had the opportunity to teach children in the rural areas of the Amazon Jungle. Outside of Strive, she travels and explores as often as she can, and enjoys being outdoors. Natalia is grateful to be at Strive, and hopes to learn as much from her students as they learn from her.
Mallary graduated from Biola University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology. She has always known she wanted to work with teenagers who were facing challenges in their lives. Mallary, who grew up with similar challenges as the students at Strive, is a strong believer in the saying, “You are not defined by your circumstances”, one of Strives’ favorite quotes. She considers herself to be a product of a team of caring people investing in her. Her individual choices sprouted from their good modeling and belief in her. Mallary hopes to inspire her students - to help them realize their potential, invest in their future and make a difference in this world, despite their circumstances. She considers herself blessed to be teaching ELA to middle school students every day.
Casey graduated from UC San Diego with a masters in Material Science and Engineering. In addition, he has holds degrees in Physics (B.S.) and Applied Math (B.A.) from California State University, Fullerton. Casey has participated in a variety of academic and research experiences, which he hopes to share in great detail with Strive students; especially to those interested in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines. Above all, Casey hopes to give each hard-working Strive student the tools needed to pursue an enriching life after high school.
Soledad is currently receiving her AA at LA Trade Tech. Soledad was a student at Strive when she was a child and returned to Strive as a volunteer. She is now part of our staff team and has been working at Strive for over two years sharing her passion for baking with our Strive Bakery and Cafe and assisting lead staff.
Joana is another past Strive alumni and has been working at Strive for over two years. She is currently attending Santa Monica College pursuing a degree in communications. Working at Strive has given her a positive perspective towards her community. She enjoys being able to contribute to such a wonderful program and assists our lead staff in the classrooms.
Jissel attended Bates College for 3 years where she pursued a degree in Sociology with a concentration in Education. At Bates College, she was a member of The Corella & Bertram F. Bonner Foundation where she served as a mentor and tutor through meaningful service with community partners. Jissel’s next steps include continuing her studies at USC. Working at Strive has allowed her to continue engaging with and inspiring her community. She hopes to continue to be a part of the amazing academic growth of her students.
Sarah Riganti Lead Teacher and Grant Writer
Sarah has a CELTA certification and will be working on her DELTA in 2019. She has taught ESL to adults and children in Central America and in the USA. In her spare time, she enjoys being outdoors and traveling the world. She considers herself incredibly lucky to work with with the students here at Strive.
Keven Vargas Pineda is sophomore at Cathedral High School, located in Downtown Los Angeles. He enjoys video and photo editing, playing basketball and skateboarding. His passion for learning how to edit videos and photos led him to explore the world of Graphic Design and possibly turn it into a career. Even though he is still fairly young he plans on being able to make his family proud and look up to him despite his age.
Justin Blake Perez is a Junior at Cathedral High School. His hobbies include playing basketball, skateboarding and spending time with friends and family. His long-term goal is to pursue a higher education and a successful life.
Daniel Ontiveros is a senior at Cathedral High School. He is proud to call him self a Christian. He plans on attending Cal Poly Pomona where he’ll study computer or civil engineering, and pursue a masters from USC.