Elena Curris Scholarship

Elena Diane Curris Memorial Scholarship

“It is with love and pride that the Family of Elena Curris, member of the 2009 LLB Class, is establishing the ELENA DIANE CURRIS LLB SCHOLARSHIP, in honor and memory of her adventurous spirit, wonderful sense of humor, endless courage and compassion, the love and appreciation she felt from her fellow classmates, and the ongoing support she received as a Leadership Long Beach graduate.”


Working for California State University, Long Beach, Elena was a member of the Leadership Long Beach Institute Class of 2009. When she went through the program, she had been a relatively new resident of Long Beach.  Elena gained and acquired a great fondness for her classmates and the community through the learning and the bonds she made.  She remained active in the community through her Leadership Long Beach connections and contributed some of her volunteer efforts to the organization.  Her untimely death in 2015 was felt by her classmates. 


The family of Elena Curris has established a scholarship fund with Leadership Long Beach to support the organization to continue to accept and nurture women professionals early in their career in the manner that they had done with Elena.  The scholarship is designed to help defray some of the Institute tuition costs that would normally hinder participation in the program to a deserving applicant.


The Elena Diane Curris Memorial Scholarship is intended for professional women early in their career. As the program did for Elena, the purpose is to help foster professional women moving up into community leadership. The scholarship requests will be considered by a scholarship committee and awarded based on financial need and community leadership potential.  The scholarship committee is searching for professional women early in their career who embody the spirit of the beloved Elena Diane Curris:


  • Demonstration of a strong community service background
  • Demonstration of taking on various leadership roles
  • Desire to help and empower others around them
  • Desire to work with others from different backgrounds


Joy Contreras – LLBI 2017

“I am extremely honored and touched to have received this scholarship from the Curris family as it would have been an extreme financial struggle to pay for this valuable program.  I am grateful for gaining a greater appreciation for the City of Long Beach and have made great connections to outstanding individuals doing great work in our community.  I know that I will be able to add to the quality of the city from everything that I have and will gain from my Leadership Long Beach experience.” 


Eydie Pasicel and Monique Kosal – LLBI 2018



The members of the Institute Class of 2009, presented the scholarship awards to Eydie Pasicel of the Women’s Shelter of Long Beach and Monique Kosal of the City of Long Beach at the 2017 Community Welcome Reception on August 28th at Rancho Los Cerritos.  In front of a crowd of nearly 150 people, Sabrina Sanders, Olivia Maiser, Veronica Davalos and Jennifer Wise (all LLBI 2009), spoke to the strength, values, and commitment to Long Beach made by Elena during her time in Long Beach and as an alumnus of Leadership Long Beach. 

The Curris family has generously provided funds for two (2) scholarships in the amount of $1,500. These scholarships will represent 1/2 of the class tuition costs. The scholarships will be awarded by a selection panel made up of friends, colleagues and classmates of Elena.



Jennifer Allen & Alyssa Gutierrez – LLBI 2019



On behalf of the parents of Elena Curris, Constantine and Jo Curris, members of the Institute Class of 2009, presented the scholarship awards to Jennifer Allen of Plan for Good and Alyssa Gutierrez of the City of Long Beach at the 2018 Community Welcome Reception on August 27th at Rancho Los Cerritos.  Inaugural Curris scholarship recipient Joy Contreras (LLBI ’17) was joined by Olivia Maiser and Jennifer Wise (both LLBI 2009), as they expressed the characteristics of Elena as a strong woman and the love of Long Beach she had after becoming an alumnus of Leadership Long Beach.