It was this past May that the Citrus College Foundation was placed under the direction of Christina Garcia, director of development and alumni relations.
Originally from Glendora, Garcia was raised in Covina, and earned her bachelor’s degree in liberal studies and a master’s degree in clinical psychology from Azusa Pacific University. She had planned to eventually get her teaching credential from APU, but fate stepped in.
That summer she took a job with World Vision that changed everything. World Vision is a Christian humanitarian non-profit organization that works internationally with needy children and families affected by poverty and injustice.
The plan was to take the temporary summer job then go back to school to get her teaching credential from APU. Then she realized her love for the non-profit world had filled her with such gratitude that the $8.30 an hour she was getting for the work was more than she could believe.
She stayed with World Vision for eight years, learning how to talk to donors and making them feel the impact of their gift. This skill proved transferrable to every fundraising challenge she has done since.
Over the past 15 years, as an advancement professional, she held positions at Fuller Theological Seminary as director of development for the Graduate School of Psychology and director of the Fuller fund. She was played a key role in Fuller’s Leading Change Capital Campaign, which raised $150 million for scholarships, research and faculty endowment.
Prior to coming to Citrus, she was at the Haggai Institute, where she was the director of development and estate planning services for the West Coast region.
Having taken a couple of classes at Citrus, Garcia said “Coming to Citrus had a feel of coming home. I was very excited to get the position here.”
“When donors see the buildings go up around our campus, they are able to see where their donations are going. It enhances where people give and makes then feel good about giving.”
To magnify the philanthropy of their giving, Garcia keeps donors abreast of students’ achievements. Also noted to donors are faculty efforts to accommodate students. Classes are currently operating at 106 percent capacity, making Citrus a valuable asset to the learning community.
Geraldine M. Perri, Ph.D. superintendent/president, said “Ms. Garcia’s educational preparation, professional skills sets, warm and outgoing personality are a winning combination for Citrus College.”
“Ms. Garcia has a definite passion for student success. She is committed to improving the lives of the students of Citrus College by ensuring that they are supported throughout their academic journey,” Perri said.
Citrus College was founded in 1915 and with its 100-year anniversary approaching; the Foundation is looking forward to celebrating in a big way.
“All the improvements achieved by donations enhance the community and make everyone feel good about giving,” Garcia said. “We are a proven partner as we continue to graduate students who go out and do these amazing things. Our faculty is dedicated to the students and their successes.”
“All of these are reasons why it is important for me to do good development work,” Garcia said smiling. “I love it. It’s a joyful job.”
Garcia wants students to know that their future is in their hands. As they progress in life, they will have many opportunities to stay involved at Citrus College.
Giving back will be something that will help future students flourish.