The Star-News

Building a Foundation for education

Sat, Mar 09 2013 12:00 PM Posted By: Allison K. Sampité-montecalvo

A group of alumni from a South Bay high school has created a foundation to further aid their alma mater.

Former Chula Vista city councilman Jerry Rindone, former Third Avenue Village Association executive director Jack Blakely and former Chula Vista High principal Gary Chapman are the founding board members of a team working to raise money for Chula Vista High School.

The main goal of the Chula Vista High School Foundation is to support the needs of current and future students in order to enhance their educational experience.

Ultimately, the foundation is striving to raise $1 million.

The foundation’s major objective for this year is to purchase a new, state of the art digital sign.

“We want to start helping the school as much as possible,” 1963 graduate and foundation president Chapman said. “Our first fundraiser is to try and get an electronic marquee before the school starts up for the summer. It’s about $45,000.”

The marquee at the corner of Fourth Avenue and K Street is original, put up when the school first opened.

Although the foundation has its priorities created with community input, donated money can be directed toward any interest, including sports teams, memorial funds, college trips and scholarships.

“It’s for anything that we can do to help the educational experience at Chula Vista High School,” Chapman said.

The foundation is looking to raise financial support for projects and facilities, enhance community relations and support with local businesses, among other things, due to reduced public school funding.

Donors will be recognized and rewarded for the generosity on a regular basis.

“The school is going to put on a huge concert in the (Jack Tygett) performing arts center on May 3 for all the people who donate,” Chapman said. “We’ll do that annually.”

The foundation has received approximately $500 to date.

Foundation treasurer Jack Blakely graduated from Chula Vista High in 1964. Blakely owned a business in Chula Vista for 25 years before working for the Third Avenue Village Association. He retired five years ago.

“The goal is to improve the campus and the school itself to make it a better place for those in the community to go to school,” Blakely said.

The current board is comprised of alumni from the ’60s through the ’80s and holds open meetings once a month in the main building at Chula Vista High School at 6 p.m.

“We’re always looking for new members because the more ideas we can get the better,” Blakely said. “We’re looking for people to join from other years.”

Foundation vice president Jerry Rindone said the purpose of the foundation is to advance the school’s tradition of giving back.

“Chula Vista High School has a long tradition of history and school spirit and we appreciate the education we received there,” Rindone said. “We just wanted to celebrate the school and give back to the community.”

Anyone interested in donating to the foundation can register at Checks should be made payable to Chula Vista High School Foundation and sent to 820 Fourth Ave. in Chula Vista.

Anyone interested in joining can con­­­tact Gary Chapman at

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