Updated: Jun 11, 2020
What began as a ceremony to celebrate former Angels Nest Board Member and current
Executive Director of Irell & Manella, Mark Hanson, ended up raising nearly $10,000 for Angels Nest, a Los Angeles based nonprofit that supports current and former foster youth with housing and other needs as they pursue a higher education.
The event took place on September 25th at Mister A’s, an elegant restaurant with panoramic views of downtown San Diego’s skyline and it was hosted by the Western Legal Leadership Council (WLLC), a senior executive law firm leadership organization that Hanson co-founded and served as chair. During the dinner honoring Hanson’s role as outgoing chair, was when the audience became aware of how much former foster youth struggle when they age out of the foster care system. According to Alliance for Children’s Rights, half of all young adults who age out of foster care end up homeless or incarcerated and only 3% of emancipated foster youth graduate college.* WLLC members also discovered how critical organizations like Angels Nest are in helping youth stay in college by providing housing support and other services.
"Mark’s work at Angels Nest positioned us to be successful over the long term."
After learning more about the challenges former foster youth face in life and inspired by hearing about Angels Nest’s work and Hanson’s involvement, one-by-one, some WLLC members started standing up to pledge money to help.
Hanson became deeply moved by the spontaneous gesture.
“I am overwhelmed by everyone's generosity. I'm truly touched and glad that more people now know about Angels Nest and how important this organization is. As people began pledging money, I was overwhelmed with emotion at the thought that these people thought of me in this way and that they knew that there was no more meaningful or impactful way of honoring me. Their awareness of my involvement and commitment to Angels Nest was humbling to me,” Hanson said.
According to Angels Nest co-founder, Jean Walker, Mark was a vital member of the Board of Directors for several years and in his time, he made a significant difference in his service. "Mark came into this volunteer position ready and willing to delve into the finances and assist with our partners. Mark’s work at Angels Nest positioned us to be successful over the long term. These donations are not only a lasting legacy to Mark’s work for Angels Nest, but serve as an acknowledgement of his passion for assisting former foster youth, who are some of the most vulnerable members of society."
Hanson served on the Angels Nest board until 2018. During his time, he helped raise enough money to help former foster youth maintain housing for one summer. He also served as the Treasurer and volunteered his expertise and resources to help keep the nonprofit in operation.
The Angels Nest Board of Directors would like to specially thank Mark Hanson and the following donors for contributing to the betterment of LA’s current and former foster youth:
Steven Daitch/Armanino LLP
* Alliance for Children’s Rights, https://kids-alliance.org/facts-stats/