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Fairplex Insider

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Fairplex Newsroom

Clarence Davis
Policy and Washington Communications

For Immediate Release



LA VERNE, CALIFORNIA – Today with the help of General Motors’ Advanced Design Operations, the General Motors Foundation provided a $10,000 grant to support the educational initiatives of The Learning Centers at Fairplex.  Specifically, the donation will help students who are enrolled in their automotive program, the Alex Xydias Center for Automotive Arts (AXC) where students gain the confidence and hands-on experience needed to enter the automotive industry. 

“This year, the GM Foundation will provide $1.6 million in funding to nearly 200 organizations in cities where GM employees live and work,” said Vivian Pickard, president of the GM Foundation.  Through these grants, the GM Foundation is building stronger communities and enriching the lives of our neighbors. 

“The AXC provides innovative, hands-on experiences that give students the necessary skills to build a long career in the automotive industry.  By developing a trained workforce for the future, the program benefits an industry that is seeking skilled technicians,” said Frank Saucedo, Director of Advanced Design-California.

Frank Saucedo, Director of GM’s Advanced Design-California presented the $10,000 check to John Blickenstaff, Chair of the AXC Advisory Committee at the 17th Annual “Cool Cruise” Auto Show.  Also in attendance was AXC advisory committee members, several students from the AXC program and instructors from The Learning Centers at Fairplex.  

“The Alex Xydias Center for Automotive Arts is extremely grateful to the GM Foundation for its generous support through this grant award.  Named after hot rod legend, Alex Xydias, this hands-on program provides young students with the opportunities to gain skills that will help them succeed in careers within the automotive industry,” said Jon Blickenstaff, Alex Xydias Center for the Automotive Arts Advisory Committee Chair. “Through the support of partners like the GM Foundation and the unique resources of the Fairplex campus, we are able to offer young people valuable educational experiences that are not always available.”

About the GM Foundation
Since its inception in 1976, the GM Foundation has donated hundreds of millions of dollars to American charities, educational organizations and to disaster relief efforts worldwide. The GM Foundation focuses on supporting Education, Health and Human Services, Environment and Energy and Community Development initiatives, mainly in the communities where GM operates.  Funding of the GM Foundation comes solely from GM.  The last contribution to the GM Foundation was made in 2001. For more information, visit