Tag Archives: Los Angeles

African American Icons: Salt-N-Pepa

African American Icons: Salt-N-Pepa

This month we’ve asked our coaches to tell us about an African American role model in their lives to celebrate Black History Month.

Steph in LA told us how Salt-N-Pepa had an impact on her:

“Salt-N-Pepa entered a male-dominated industry and absolutely rocked it. They talk about how all these emotions and actions that we feel that are sensationalized by the media are actually okay and normal and honestly fantastic parts of being a human. They raised awareness about AIDS through their music and way of living, as well as gender and race issues, broke down so many walls and had SO MUCH FUN while doing it!

Salt-N-Pepa have influenced who I am because, growing up listening to them, I feel so much more confident and comfortable with my feelings, and I think that has shaped a lot of who I am today and what I think I am able to do. (They) are passionate about creating music with a positive message and always positive energy, especially as a means of bringing communities together. This philosophy closely aligns with how I strive to live my life and accomplish everything that I do.”




Support STOKED Los Angeles: Snowboard, Skateboard, and Surf in One Day

Los Angeles, CA (January 23, 2017) – STOKED, a nonprofit organization that empowers underserved youth through action sports culture, will hold their third Trishredathon on Feb.11, 2017.  The Trishredathon, sponsored by Laureus Sport for Good Foundation USA, is a high-energy action sports triathlon benefiting the youth development programs of STOKED Los Angeles. Participants will join STOKED for a day of snowboarding, surfing, and skateboarding to raise funds and awareness for STOKED Los Angeles.  The event starts and ends in Los Angeles, California. The snowboarding portion will take place at Snow Summit in Big Bear Mountain, California, where STOKED Los Angeles hosts its Snow Mentor programs.

“Southern California is one of the only places in the world where you can surf, snowboard, and skateboard in a single day. Many of our kids will never get the chance to do this. We want to show them that they can accomplish anything with some determination and community,” said STOKED founder and president Steve Larosiliere.

The 2017 Trishredathon is sponsored by national non-profit Laureus Sport for Good Foundation USA (Laureus USA).  “Our mission is to change the lives of youth through the power of sport,” said Benita Fitzgerald-Mosley, Olympic Gold Medalist and CEO of Laureus USA. “Supporting events that raise the profile of sport-based mentoring programs is a natural fit for us. We are proud to be the title sponsor of STOKED’s Trishredathon, a unique way to engage multi-sport athletes in improving sports programming for at-risk youth.”

Launched in 2012, the Trishredathon was created to support STOKED’s programs in Los Angeles while engaging the large action sports community of California. This year, STOKED hopes to raise $25,000 for these programs. Participants are provided with transportation, lift tickets, and a wide variety of perks from STOKED’s partners. 100% of the proceeds directly benefit STOKED’s youth development programs in Los Angeles.  For more information and to get involved, please visit bit.ly/trishredathon17.


STOKED, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, was founded in 2005 by Steve Larosiliere and Sal Masekela, on the belief that the courage and perseverance needed to learn how to skateboard, snowboard, and surf would be an ideal way to teach life skills to youth from disadvantaged urban communities. STOKED’s mission is to promote personal development, academic achievement, and healthy living to underserved youth through action sports culture. STOKED operates in both New York City and Los Angeles, providing afterschool, action sports, community service, and mentoring programs, and has developed partnerships with a vast array of public schools and other nonprofit organizations to reach its intended population. For more information about STOKED, please visit stoked.org.

About Laureus Sport for Good Foundation (USA)

Laureus Sport for Good Foundation USA is a non-profit organization that changes the lives of youth and strengthens communities through the power of sport. We catalyze the growth of organizations using sport for social change, thereby increasing the health, education, employment and social cohesion of youth in underserved communities. Since 2012, we have supported the training of over 1,500 youth sport coaches and reached over 375,000 youth across 58 cities. Learn more about Sport for Good at www.LaureusUSA.com.




For More Information Contact:
Constance Beverley, Director of Development & Partnerships

Stoked LA at HUGE

Stoked LA at HUGE

Words and photos by: Katie Ferraro

Just before our Year 2 students in Los Angeles headed to winter break, we loaded up the city bus and began the journey to the Huge LA offices to meet up with their team. This was our second meeting with the staff and now that we had gotten to know each other, we jumped into the principles of design thinking with both feet. Our students, though reserved at first, brought their insights as community members after interviewing their peers on the biggest concerns they face today.

To watch the process unfold was magic. Seeing our students’ preceding work come together & start to open up was so cool to watch. However, the most special part of the experience was feeling the pure joy exuding from the pros as they led the process. It’s clear the Huge team loves to create, and their passion was evident as they collaborated with our Stokers.

Huge really showed up for our youth and the amount of energy they brought to our day together was electrifying! They joined our students in the trenches, leading by example, and brought so much excitement to the development of their brands. Energy is one of our core values and it’s always refreshing to partner with brands like Huge that mirror that.

During the meeting we used our design thinking curriculum created by Huge which allows our students to think outside the box and voice their ideas, no matter how far fetched they may sound. With this type of brand (and character) development, it is imperative for our students to collaborate with their teammates in a unique way, seeing things from different perspectives. So far, it has proven to be a great exercise in teamwork, something that STOKED highly values and will serve our students well in the future.

When the meeting wrapped, both of our teams successfully uncovered their future brand ideals in the form of powerful problem statements to drive their projects. While I don’t want to give too much away just yet, for them, it was all about connection. It was really inspiring to hear the issues our students will tackle with their brands. I cannot wait to share how their brands develop in the next few months!



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Words by: Katie Ferraro

Photos by: Katie Ferraro & Dustin Valdez

This summer I had the opportunity to use my background in marketing and event planning in a big, meaningful way. I led a group of eight students in Los Angeles in creating an event from concept to implementation. The project, backed by Mountain Dew and powered by Motive, gave the students the opportunity to use their insights on challenges skateboarders face in LA to give back to their community. It was both inspiring and eye opening to watch this process unfold as they came up with an amazing plan!

As a coach in this environment, one of the biggest things I see is kids placing limits on themselves and their ideas. Despite this being present in planning their project, what they came up with was larger than life. They created LA Skate Movement, a festival style event featuring a skatepark with custom designed elements (made possible by California Ramp Works), art, music, and photography workshops, food trucks to fuel the excitement, and swag boasting the LA Skate Movement Logo which was designed by one of the students. When they showed up to the very first event (of 4), their faces lit up because it was clear that what was in front of them was beyond their expectations, but exactly what they dreamed up.

During the first event, artist Michael C. Hsiung led a sticker workshop where kids were encouraged to put their creativity to work by creating stickers that were true to them. Some of the students were so excited to share their creations, they decorated some of the STOKED skateboards for us all to enjoy.


A legend in the skate industry, photographer and film maker Tobin Yelland brought a crew of photographers to the 2nd event and put high quality cameras in the hands of students and attendees, teaching them how to best capture skateboarders in action. They even got to take a printed copy of their favorite photo with them! This was especially cool because many of our students are interested in photography and take pictures of or film their friends skateboarding often.


For event three, Scratch Academy brought digital and manual DJ set ups, giving everyone a chance to try out their DJing skills. Having the opportunity to get their hands on this technology was really cool for the kids because most had never seen or used them before. At the end of the workshop, they were able to create a spin art record branded with the LA Skate Movement logo to take home with them as an added bonus.


Lastly, the biggest event of the all was the fourth event with professional athlete and Mountain Dew rider Nick Tucker. It was a packed house, but Nick graciously took the time to sign autographs, take pictures, and helped our students learn and perfect their tricks. To end the event and the series, we rallied everyone together, about 150-200 people, and recorded our own version of the mannequin challenge!


It’s safe to say that this past Skate season was one of the most successful and fulfilling yet. Not only did our students get to create something meaningful and inclusive for their community, they also got to interact with parents, kids, and adults sharing something they are passionate about—skateboarding and art. A big thank you to everyone who contributed to make our student’s dreams come true!