10News Leadership Award Winner Katie Elsbree

10News honors Katie Elsbree who founded the first Dollars for Scholars chapter in the San Diego County. Dollars for Scholars is a locally operated and supported non-profit scholarship foundation that strives to expand post-secondary educational opportunities for college bound students by raising scholarship funds for local students.

Katie Elsbree was a Mott Fellow in the 1970s who received scholarships from the Mott Foundation and Etna Insurance that fully funded her BA, Masters, and California teaching credential. After the generous support of these scholarships, Katie promised herself that she would help other low income students reach their dream of a college education and has been happily paying it forward ever since. She opened the first Dollars for Scholars chapter in Ocean Beach over 20 years ago, and has since assisted 20+ chapters to establish a Dollars for Scholars scholarship program.

The first chapter in Ocean Beach was created in July 1993. Its parent organization is Scholarship America and is based in St. Peter, Minnesota. Katie started the Ocean Beach chapter in memory of Steve Rogow whom she volunteered with at their children’s elementary school. This program aims to assist less fortunate and low-income youth who want to obtain post-secondary educational opportunities but lack the financial support. This program has made a huge difference in the lives of many youth, particularly foster youth who have been released from the state. Last year, the Ocean Beach chapter awarded $28,000 in scholarships to students, and in 2008, the seventeen chapters in the San Diego County raised over $441,500 for scholarships for local students.

Today, Katie is a retired San Diego Courts school teacher and continues to actively volunteer her time for Dollars for Scholars. She currently holds a position as a board member for Fostering Opportunities Dollars for Scholars, and Katie is also the Vice President in charge of Funds-Friends raising money for this chapter. Katie is also working with Dr. Dennis Doyle, Superintendent of National City Schools to start a National City Dollars for Scholars chapter.

For more information, please contact Ocean Beach Dollars for Scholars at 619-226-4133 or visit www.californiadollarsforscholars.org.