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Thursday, December 09, 2010.

‘Tis the season: AVC receives $100,000 gift for students

Marroquin Donation Group
Officials announce a $100,000 gift from the Marroquin family. From left, college board members Jack Seefus and Betty Wienke, Hernando Marroquin, Fran Marroquin, Andrew Marroquin, Trustee Michael R. Adams, Athletic Director Newton Chelette and President Dr. Jackie L. Fisher Sr.

A long-held desire by McDonald’s franchise owners Hernando and Fran Marroquin to open opportunities for young people through athletics has resulted in a $100,000 donation by the couple to the Antelope Valley College Foundation.

The donation was announced at a Dec. 9 news conference on the Antelope Valley College campus in Lancaster.

“Education is what we have always tried to support. We wanted this to go directly to support student athletes and the programs that serve them,” said Fran Marroquin.

She explained that intercollegiate athletic programs provide opportunities for young people by engaging them in sports they enjoy while getting an education that can serve them a lifetime.

“This is a great example of the support in the community for our student athletes,” said President Dr. Jackie L. Fisher Sr.

“We’re very fortunate to have people like Hernando and Fran who think enough of Marauder athletics to invest in the future of our student athletes,” said Newton Chelette, athletic director and dean of the physical education division. “The years I’ve been here, they’ve both been involved in our athletic department in many, many ways. This is just another generous contribution by them.”

“Hernando and Fran have been long-time supporters of education at Antelope Valley College,” said Bridget Razo, executive director of the Antelope Valley College Foundation. “Their commitment and dedication to our students is unsurpassed. Their endowment will be great legacy and testament to the family’s commitment to education both now and in the generations to come.”

The Marroquins’ long-time involvement includes sponsoring football bowl games and basketball tournaments. At the suggestion of the Marroquins, the college’s stadium was named in honor of the school’s retired football coach, Brent Carder Marauder Stadium, earlier this year.

The family’s ties to AVC extend to their two children, both of whom attended AVC before going on to graduate from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).

Fran Marroquin has witnessed the difference that athletics can make in the lives of students when – prior to going into business full-time – she worked as a counselor at East Los Angeles College, a community college.

“I saw miracles happen at that school – kids who were given the opportunity,” she said.

Their gift will form an endowment that will be used to support AVC student athletes in perpetuity.