Pelican Bay Volunteer Alliance

Let’s graduate the Pelican Bay EITs!  They are hustling and preparing for your return.  We coached them on the resumes, impact challenge, and business ideas in July and now it’s time to celebrate their accomplishment.  The Pelican Bay Volunteer Alliance (PBVA) can’t wait to see you there. 

Established in June by a group of business executives from around the country, the PBVA’s first task was to hold a July coaching event for the 164 Entrepreneurs-in-Training (EITs) who have been participating in the Defy Ventures program at Pelican Bay.  Now we are making plans for the pitch competition/graduation event (graduation event) to be held December 7 & 8.

Due to unforeseen challenges, Defy no longer has the resources to see these EITs through to their graduation, and that's why the PBVA stepped up to ensure that these men receive the full benefit and life-changing impact of the program.

We are excited to invite you to join us in our efforts to provide the pitch competition/graduation Weekend in December. If you are interested in being a volunteer for this two-day event beginning on Friday, December 7 through Saturday, December 8, please contact Jenae Kaska at [email redacted].  Returning volunteers are asked to contribute $500 towards the graduation. This is waived for new volunteers.  RSPVs are due October 5th.  All registered volunteers will be emailed a prison clearance form that must be completed by October 10th. 

In our initiative to fund the July event, we were ecstatic to exceed our $30,000 goal. We’ll be rolling those excess funds into our next initiative: the Defy pitch competition and graduation weekend in December.  This event is the culmination of the hard work performed by this class of Pelican Bay EITs, and we need your help to finish what we’ve started.

We estimate the total cost of the Graduation Event Weekend to be $73,500.  This includes 100 EIT family members coming from across California to see their loved one graduate.  For the first time at Pelican Bay, we are chartering two buses to drive family members 15 hours to Crescent City from Los Angeles.  Once there, we will provide two nights lodging for these family members.  Reunification with families is a vital part of the Defy program and having family members being able to attend their graduation is huge for the EITs.  Pelican Bay’s location is so remote that getting there to visit is a hardship for most families. 

If you have any financial questions related to the PBVA, feel free to contact Dennis Meek at [email redacted]. 

If you have any questions related to attending the Graduation Event, contact Jenae Kaska at [email redacted].
  • Michael Dash 
    • $1,000 
    • 40 mos
  • Shelley Winner 
    • $300 
    • 40 mos
  • Rollins Stallworth 
    • $1,000 
    • 40 mos
  • Kacey Gorringe 
    • $1,000 
    • 40 mos
  • Thomas Hardy Jackson 
    • $5,000 
    • 40 mos
See all

Fundraising team (2)

Dennis Meek 
Raised $5,500 from 2 donations
Crescent City, CA
Jenae Lyn 
Team member
Raised $2,000 from 4 donations

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