Gardena Elks Exalted Ruler Santos lives up to her YWCA Crimson honors

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Alyssa Santos, the Exalted Ruler of Gardena Elks Lodge No. 1919, epitomizes the old adage, “You can’t keep a good woman down.”  Born and reared in the South Bay, namely Gardena and Redondo Beach, Alyssa comes from the proud heritage of Hispanicand Pacific Islander.  She celebrates 27 years in the beauty industry, the past 20 years of which have beenas owner-operator of her own salon.

Alyssa Santos, the Exalted Ruler of Gardena Elks Lodge No. 1919, epitomizes the old adage, “You can’t keep a good woman down.”  Born and reared in the South Bay, namely Gardena and Redondo Beach, Alyssa comes from the proud heritage of Hispanicand Pacific Islander.  She celebrates 27 years in the beauty industry, the past 20 years of which have beenas owner-operator of her own salon.

Elks Lodge acquired a gem when they recruited Alyssa and her talents a few years ago to enhance theirfundraising efforts, officials said.   She proved not only efficient and proficient in that area, she also increased the Elks membership base by 30, all of whom continue to be actively engaged as the Inner Guard/First Lady of the Lodge, Chaplain, Assistant Esquire, Our DaKine Tuesday Night Kitchen Crew, Scholarship Chairman, Lodge Photographer, and Newsletter Editor.

Resourceful, creative, imaginative and tireless, Exalted Ruler Alyssa Santos sees and immediately finds ways to kick it up a notch or two to make every experience and event memorable.  A session at a Build-a-Bear Workshop became the Beary God-Mother/Father time for Elk members and friends to build and donate 40 teddy bears to a local community outreach facility to assure homeless, scared or troubled kids could have bears to call their very own.

Santos is as effective in-house as out in the community where her centerpieces and decorating skills are in constant demand, and her flyer and invitation designs keep her co-chairing almost every event that she isn’t chairing.  She earned the chairmanship of the Membership Committee during her first year as an Elk, and has added to her résume Girl Scout Chair, and part of the Fish Fry crew 2-Friday nights a month.

Community-wise, Alyssa Santos has overseen the Elks continued commitment to support the community. On behalf of Lodge 1919 she presented to the CA-HI Major (purple pig) Project at the state conventionmore than $30,000 raised by its members; awarded $30,000 in scholarships to college bound students last spring; provided drug awareness information; made quarterly visits to the Long Beach VA Hospital to assist our veterans; donated $5,000 and pantry items to the annual Helping Hands project, $16,000 to the Gardena Senior Daycare Center; and assisted in acquiring a new dog for the GPD K-9 unit.

For additional information or to make reservations, contact Jane Sunahara of the YWCA Gardena Valley at 310-327-5356.

Story courtesy of the YWCA, photo by Castro Photography