Celebrating Children Honorees Paulette and Henry Matson

Posted by on Aug 31, 2015 in Events, News | 0 comments

Paulette and Henry Matson’s relationship with Hathaway-Sycamores stretches back some 15 years. Asked what first sparked his passion for our agency, Henry says, “When I walked around the Children’s [residential care] Village and the Highland Park Family Resource Center, I was impressed with the employees – their dedication, love, commitment, and compassion for the kids. This wasn’t just a job; they were trying to make a difference.”

Hathaway-Sycamores' Celebrating Children with Henry and Paulette Matson at the Natural History Museum

Recalling her first impression of Hathaway-Sycamores, Paulette says, “I was amazed by how resilient the kids are – how they can rise above all of the turmoil in their lives.”

Beyond these initial impressions, what has most fundamentally fueled the Matsons’ longtime and generous support of Hathaway-Sycamores is their deep dedication to mentoring. Both Henry and Paulette are highly accomplished in their respective fields. Henry actually has made his mark in several fields, including real estate development, wireless communications, and his current venture – providing financing for wheelchair-accessible vehicles. Paulette is well known in the arena of interior design, having owned her own award-winning company since 1983.

While the Matson’s clearly bring talent and hard work to the table, the couple attributes much of their success to the role that mentors have played in their lives. As Henry explains, “Mentoring makes a difference in a positive and powerful way.” This deep belief in the life-changing potential of mentoring drew the Matsons to Hathaway-Sycamores Highland Park Family Resource Center. Located in a economically disadvantaged neighborhood, the Family Resource Center’s Learning Lab offers a broad range of free services – including tutoring, SAT prep classes, college-application assistance, and one-on-one mentoring – to students ages 7 to 18.

The only free resource of its kind in the Highland Park community, the Family Resource Center has helped area youth – many of whom assumed that attending college was simply out of their reach – to be awarded fully funded acceptance at Ivy League and other top-rated universities.

For Henry, supporting the Family Resource Center has been an extremely rewarding experience. “When I receive the Learning Lab’s annual recap of results showing all of the scholarships that have been awarded, it makes me sit back and smile. It shows that you can make a difference and change lives.” Adding, “Through the Learning Lab, we can break the cycle of poverty and really raise the bar.”

In addition to actively supporting the Family Resource Center, Henry’s Hathaway-Sycamores footprint extends to serving on our Board of Directors since 2004. He went on to helm the Board as Chair from 2009 to 2011, and currently is a member of the Advisory Board.

Longtime residents of Long Beach, the Matsons’ philanthropy and volunteerism extends to a variety of organizations. Both have been actively involved with the Long Beach Symphony Orchestra, and Paulette helps raise funds for California State University, Long Beach, as well as the Aquarium of the Pacific. In support of the Aquarium, the couple even adopted a penguin – named Matson – who paints with his feet!

From adopting artistic penguins to helping children facing serious life challenges, Henry and Paulette Matson stand as exemplary examples of what a commitment to making a positive difference looks like.

If you would like to come celebrate, click here to purchase tickets online or email or call Andi Sica at (626) 395-7100 ext. 2516. Tribute Journal Ads also available, please contact Andi Sica to place your ad.

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