August 1, 2015

Special Olympics Southern California:
A Proud Long-time Partner of the Long Beach Firefighters’ Association

Founded in 1969 with a competition that attracted 900 individuals, Special Olympics Southern California (SOSC) today enriches the lives of over 19,000 athletes with intellectual disabilities and their communities throughout Southern California through its sports, education, and athlete health programs. It is part of the largest sports organization in the world, Special Olympics International. The Special Olympics World Games were held in Los Angeles and Long Beach from July 25-August 2, 2015.

As a non-profit entity that provides its services free of charge to athletes and their families, SOSC relies heavily on the generosity of individuals and organizations to help it achieve its mission. The Long Beach Firefighters’ Association (LBFFA) is one of the long-time partners on whom SOSC depends to make its annual Summer Games a resounding success for its athletes and their families.

Every year since 1998, on the second Sunday in June, LBFFA members – and often their families – have set up their mobile grill on the Cal State University, Long Beach campus and served a pancake breakfast for 1,200-1,500 family members and friends of the athletes participating in the SOSC Summer Games. This event has become a family tradition for many of the firefighters, whose children and their friends come with them year after year – including those years when the Games fall on Fathers’ Day, which it does frequently.

In these three short videos, you will hear Bill Shumard, CEO of SOSC, talk about his organization’s three-decade relationship with the LBFFA. Bill Fields, SOSC’s Associate Vice President and Director of its Summer Games, notes that without the commitment and dedication of LBFFA members, they couldn’t provide free meals for the athletes’ families. And Cynda Logsdon, Volunteer Director of the SOSC Family Pavilion who is responsible for hosting the athletes’ families, describes the long-time partnership as one characterized by the generosity and friendliness of LBFFA members.

If you would like to learn more about Special Olympics Southern California or find out the many ways in which you can get involved in its programs here in Long Beach, visit its website at


Submitted by:

Pat Lynch, Ph.D.
President, Business Alignment Strategies, Inc.
Long Beach, CA
August 1, 2015

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