Jim McDonnell


For the last 50 years, the YMCA of Greater Long Beach has hosted a breakfast on Good Friday morning to inspire the community and begin the Easter weekend.

Time is short to get tickets for this year’s breakfast, which is on April 19. Registration should be made by April 4 to guarantee a seat.

The breakfast has grown greatly in the last 20 years or so, and now fills the Long Beach Convention Center Ballroom with 800 to 1,000 people.

One of the big draws to the breakfast has been the testimony of prominent people, primarily in Long Beach, sharing what their faith means to them. That tradition continues this year, when Jim McDonnell shares as the featured speaker.

McDonnell is a Long Beach resident, and lived here while he rose through the ranks of the Los Angeles Police Department. He was an assistant chief there in 2010, when he was appointed to be the Long Beach police chief.

He served as chief for five years before resigning to run for Los Angeles County Sheriff. He won the election in 2014, and served a four-year term as sheriff.

McDonnell says in a release that his dedication to his convictions and the support of his personal faith have helped him to overcome adversity and lead in difficult times. Those are the stories he will tell on Good Friday.

Individual tickets to the breakfast are $60, with a table sponsorship with 10 seats available for $750. Costs are underwritten by Dr. Mike and Arline Walter.

Other speakers include Henry Walker as master of ceremonies, Brian Russell giving the invocation and Arline Walter reading scripture.

The breakfast runs from 7:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. Friday, April 19. Parking is free.

To register, go to the YMCA website, www.lbymca.org.

Harry has been executive editor of Gazette Newspapers for more than 26 years. He has been in the newspaper business for more than 35 years, with experience on both weekly and metropolitan daily papers in Colorado and California.

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