For the last ten years, I have had the privilege of getting to know Danitza and Esteban Villanueva through the nonprofits that we both support. Joining Danitza and Esteban’s team at Giving Back Magazine is truly my greatest honor.

My love and appreciation for nonprofit work began in college when I was selected to join UCLA’s official undergraduate service organization. I didn’t have a lot of money in college but I could contribute my time and talent to make an impact. From my college experience, I decided that for me, the ultimate sign of success is giving back.

I have called San Diego home for the last 28 years. During this time, I have served on 15 different boards and chaired 26 fundraisers. Some of my local interests include: Barrio Logan College Institute, Freedom Dogs, Junior Achievement, Monarch School, National Conflict Resolution Center, San Diego Public Library, San Diego Symphony, Spay Neuter Action Project, Timken Museum, and the USO. I am constantly amazed by the number of nonprofits doing good work which is why I champion so many different causes.

Because I absolutely adore animals, I am an avid reader of Giving Back Magazine’s sister publication – A Pet’s Life San Diego. Through my work with service dogs, I have seen how animals can often transform us in ways that humans cannot.

I feel incredibly lucky and blessed to live in a city that has so many kind and selfless souls who genuinely care about making our community a better place. Yes, we have the best weather in the world but what makes San Diego America’s finest city are the people.

As your philanthropy editor, each week I will feature a different hometown hero as part of our “Feel Good Friday” e-newsletter. I look forward to highlighting some of the causes that are creating a positive difference in our town as well as the individuals who are making it all happen.


Lori M. Walton

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