Meet the Coaches
“Leaders become great, not because of their power, but because of their ability to empower others.”
Russell Degnan: CEO
“The only person you should strive to be better than, is the person you were yesterday” ~Matty Mullins
Russell Degnan is a passionate change maker who has followed in the footsteps of his father (Bill Degnan), the founder of Operation New Hope.
1996 he began his career journey as a group counselor assigned to ONH’s contract with Riverside County’s Diversion and Los Angeles County Juvenile Parole. Assuming the Executive Director role in 2009 his goal was to elevate ONH from a successful “mom and pop” non-profit in to a thriving key-stakeholder in the communities they served.
2009 he set out a vision to establish a Youth Opportunity Center for the disadvantaged youth ONH served. The goal was to increase the success rate of those classified as “dropouts” throughout San Bernardino County by providing our Evidence Based Practice of case management, educational opportunities, leadership development, and career pathway programs. With these supportive services, he was confident that ONH would assist San Bernardino County in achieving more success with the TAY youth (Foster Youth, Teen Parents, Homeless, Mental Health, and those experiencing the Judicial System).
2010, He would lead the formation of a successful collaboration to create two Youth Opportunity Centers to provide meaningful life skill resources for disadvantaged youth. As a result, ONH has been able to stimulate, sustain and engage “dropout” youth into comprehensive services in San Bernardino County.
Since the opening of the Youth Opportunity Centers; 3135 students have successfully completed ONH’s Career Pathway Program, 411 have graduated with an accredited high school diploma, with 83% entering in to employment, and or enrolled in to higher education or a technical schools.
Ultimately Russell’s passion is to provide underserved youth who have been expected to be the failures in society a place where they experience genuine love, hope, and opportunities to succeed in life. Weekly you will find him in the community encouraging youth to handle their business, actively engaging community leaders, and or developing community partnerships to help empower his beloved students he has devoted his entire life to serve. Mr. Degnan is one of the most loyal and sincere voices for our under-served youth.
Mark Otelle: Violence Intervention Prevention Case Manager – Life skills Coach
Kyle Jenkins: Violence Intervention Prevention Case Manager – Life skills coach
Adrianna Jaimes – Probation Manager – Life skills – Cognitive Life skills Specialist
“The most important thing is to try and inspire people so that they can be great in whatever they want to do.” – Kobe Bryant
I have been youth developer for 4 years. What I enjoy most about teaching our Youth Reinvestment Program is seeing my students on a beautiful Saturday morning. My students come ready to participate and become leaders of our community. We grow and learn how to be aware of emotions and learn how to positively respond to our emotions.
One of my favorite pieces of working with our youth is assisting and mentoring them as they Build a Roadmap to Success. A Roadmap to Success has a huge impact on my students because they are finding their strengths, passions, and planning how they will achieve their own success.
Working with youth has impacted my life in a beautiful way; not only am I teaching the youth, but the youth are teaching and showing me that when life knocks you down you will always stay on top. I enjoy bringing awareness to the students their gifts and talents that they didn’t realize were inside of them. The youth of San Bernardino are STRONG, BEAUTIFUL & GIFTED. This is one of my favorite quotes from one of my students, “If life doesn’t go your way, then make it.” – Seth
I am a dog mom to a beautiful dog named Stella. I like to travel and learn new experiences. One of my favorite hobbies is to joke around and always lighten up the mood wherever I am at. I enjoy finding new foods and restaurants to try. I’ve always shown leadership in my life because I wanted to make sure I had an impact on whoever came in my life. One of my biggest blessings is my FAMILY, they have always showed me support and always told me to reach for the stars and never give up on myself. PERIOD!!!
Charles Short: Prison to Employment Manager
“I have been crucified with Christ, and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. And the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loves me and gave Himself up for me.” ~ Galatians 2:20, LSB
Charles is a recent addition to Operation New Hope staff. He has come on-board after working for several years in the non-profit industry, mainly faith based. He has helped to manage men’s discipleship homes/rehabilitation centers. He has also assisted in food distribution and community outreach. This experience has qualified him for our Prison-to-Employment/Warm Handoff case manager position.
Charles has felt the weight and pain of making many poor decisions in life. Though he did not grow up in a broken home per se, he created a great deal of havoc in his home life. He chose a path of destructive behavior and dark influence. At 25 years old, he finally had an epiphany that awoke him from his depraved ways; as he would confess, “God literally broke through into my life, and that was the first time I knew that Jesus is real.” An unexplainable peace overtook him, and his desires were changed in a moment. This began the road of healing for his life and genuine character started to manifest. Through this process, he developed a heart of deep compassion and love for others, especially those in afflicted conditions. He has a passion in life to see others brought to health and renewed in hope.
Currently, Charles is enrolled at Crafton Hills College, looking to complete all of his general education requirements before transferring to the university of his choice, The Master’s University. He has maintained a 4.0 GPA thus far and looks forward to pursuing a career in ministry. There will be a great deal of work necessary to obtain a degree in Biblical Studies, but he is ambitious and up for the challenge. He plans on using this degree to further influence his own life and behavior, and thereby utilize his transformative experience as a means to educate and infect the lives he encounters in this field.
All in all, Charles is grateful to be a part of the work at Operation New Hope. He looks forward to opportunities offered in this organization and understanding how he can appropriately contribute to ONH’s flourishment. He is ready to embrace this new season of life and become a righteous community influencer. S.D.G.
Alden Jackson: Prison to Employment Case Manager – Probation Life skills Coach
Ronda Lopez: WIOA Case Manager
Jerry Sifontes – Community Service Manager
Kaylee Madrigal: Career Pathway L4L Manager
“Success is not final; failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” ~Winston S. Churchill
Kaylee Frost: Careeer Pathway Coach
Thomas Webber: Career Pathway Coach